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In what has become an annual tradition, Deltona’s American Legion Post 255 will conduct its Four Chaplains service.

The ceremonies begin at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 6, in the fellowship hall of Deltona Lakes Baptist Church, 2886 Elkcam Blvd. The public is welcome to attend.

The program honors the four U.S. Army chaplains who perished in the icy waters of the North Atlantic Feb. 3, 1943, when the USAT Dorchester sank after being torpedoed by a German submarine. The chaplains were remembered for restoring some calm after the fatal attack and handing out life jackets to soldiers abandoning the doomed ship. When the available supply of life jackets was exhausted, each of the chaplains — two Protestant ministers, a Roman Catholic priest and a Jewish rabbi — took off their own life jackets and gave them to others.

As the ship went down shortly after the attack, witnesses said the chaplains stood on the deck, locked arms and prayed.

The guest speaker for the program will be Jerry McDaniels, the international literacy coordinator of Ethnos 360. Music will be provided by the Galaxy Middle School Choral Ensemble, under the direction of Mrs. Sharon Wade.

The four chaplains’ devotion to duty and service to others became one of the memorable stories of World War II.


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