The decommissioned World War 2 era destroyer named after the five Sullivan brothers from Waterloo is taking on water and listing in a Buffalo harbor. The Des Moines Register reports that crews were working to keep the USS The Sullivans from sinking. The ship had been open for tours before taking on water.

Officials working on rescuing the ship have said that "failure is not an option". The Register reports that there was an apparent breach on the right side of the hull on Wednesday night. Crews are pumping out 13,000 gallons of water per minute trying to save the ship.


More than $1 million was raised last year to repair the ship's hull. Crews had to pause their work for the winter but resumed efforts on Monday. The USS The Sullivans is one of four decommissioned Navy vessels on display at the park, according to the Register.

The ship was named for the five Sullivan brothers from Waterloo, Iowa. The Register reports that even though it was Navy policy to separate siblings who enlisted, the five Sullivans enlisted together in 1942 under the provision they could all serve together. They died when the USS Juneau was sunk by the Japanese in the South Pacific during World War 2.


Officials called the loss of the five brothers "the heaviest blow suffered by any single-family since Pearl Harbor, and probably, in American naval history".

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