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Oral History interview of James L. Long. Interview conducted by Orth, Sue at Village on the Green in Longwood, FL.


0:01 Introduction; 0:43 Childhood; 2:12 Decision to Join Navy; 3:49 Boot Camp Experience; 4:45 Naval Fire Training; 5:47 Temperature and Pressure Maintenance; 6:44 Assignment to the U.S.S. Strong; 8:08 Testing the New Ship; 8:40 Type and Class of the U.S.S. Strong; 9:27 Types of Missions for Destroyers; 9:48 Role in North Africa Campaign; 10:56 Earning the Nickname "Night Raiders"; 12:32 "The Suicide Task Force"; 13:38 Sinking of the U.S.S. Strong; 17:20 Naval Buddy System; 19:32 U.S.S. Chevalier Intentionally Rams Damaged U.S.S. Strong; 20:45 Personal Location and Events During Sinking; 21:30 Abandoning Ship; 22:50 Depth Charge Explosion and Rescue; 25:48 Casualties; 26:41 Personal Injuries; 28:37 "Japanese Charlie"; 28:28 Red Cross Phone Call Home; 30:05 Transfer to New Caledonia; 30:52 Treasure Island and Return to States; 32:17 Observation at Long Island Hospital; 33:20 Discharge from Navy; 33:47 Feelings About the End of the War; 34:44 Becoming an Electrician; 35:47 Navy's Impact on Future Employment; 37:00 Navy Radar's Impact on Naval Warfare; 39:52 Forming Personal Business; 40:18 Casualties in the Engine and Fire Room; 41:44 Final Thoughts and Conclusion.

Date of Birth


Place of Birth

Orlando (Fla.)




White - Non Hispanic

Home State


War or Conflict

World War II



Begin/End date of Service - 1st



Video; MovingImage


Entrance into Service


Branch of Service

U.S. Navy

Unit of Service

U.S.S. Strong: Commissioned 1942-08-17, Sank 1943-07-05

Location of Service

U.S.S. Strong; Solomon Islands

Highest Rank

Fireman 1st Class; F1

Prisoner of War


Service Related Injury



Solomon Islands Campaign; New Georgia Campaign


Bronze Star Medal


Was a member of "The Night Raiders;" Survived the torpedo of the torpedo of his ship by the Japanese.


Was awarded 4 Bronze Battle Stars; Was a member of Task Force Eighteen which consisted of 7 destroyers and 3 light cruisers (Honolulu, Helena, and St. Louis); His ship was in action 6 times in 6 months and was a member of the group called “The Night Raiders“; In a daylight battle, 96 Japanese planes were shot down between Guadalcanal and Tulagi; His ship was the first to be equipped with new SG Surface Radar and latest air search and fire control radars which revolutionized naval warfare; On April 7, he and his group sank a Japanese submarine; On the 4/ 5 of July, he abandoned ship because it was torpedoed on the port side. The explosion made a large hole, sinking the ship within 30 minutes.

City of Birth


Country of Birth

United States


Orth, Sue

Interview Date


Location of Interview

Village on the Green, Longwood, FL.


Long, James L.; World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal narratives; United States. Navy

Collection Description

Contains logs, audio and video recordings of interviews with Central Florida's veterans as part of a history class project for the students at the University of Central Florida (UCF). The UCF Community Veterans History Project(CVHP) started in fall 2010. It collects, preserves, and makes accessible to the public the experiences of Central Florida's veterans so that future generations will better understand the realities of conflict. It is a collaborative endeavor supported by multiple departments and offices at UCF. The veterans' histories are archived and made digitally available through the UCF library and selected materials are contributed to the Veterans History Project at the Library of Congress.

Contributor Affiliation / Organization

RICHES; University of Central Florida


Orth, Sue

Length of Interview

43 Minutes


Department of History, University of Central Florida




All rights are held by the respective holding institution. This material is posted publicly for non-profit educational uses, excluding printed publication. For permission to reproduce and/or for copyright information contact Special Collections and University Archives, University of Central Florida Libraries, (407) 823-2576. http://library.ucf.edu/about/departments/special-collections-university-archives/


University of Central Florida Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives

Contributing Project

UCF Community Veterans History Project

Document Type