Forrest O. Rednour

Forrest O. Rednour (1923–1943) was a United States Coast Guardsman who received the Navy and Marine Corps Medal posthumously for his actions during World War II.

Forrest Oren Rednour[1]
Service record photo
Born(1923-05-13)May 13, 1923
Cutler, Illinois
DiedJune 13, 1943(1943-06-13) (aged 20)
North Atlantic Ocean, off Ivituut, Greenland
AllegianceUnited States of America
Service/branchUnited States Coast Guard
Years of service1941–1943
RankShip's Cook Second Class
UnitUSCGC Escanaba (WPG-77)
Battles/warsWorld War II
AwardsNavy and Marine Corps Medal


Forrest Oren Rednour was born in Cutler, Illinois, on 13 May 1923. He enlisted in the United States Coast Guard at Chicago, Illinois, on 19 June 1941.

During the predawn darkness of 3 February 1943, Rednour, wearing a rubber suit to ward off hypothermia, was among the members of the crew of the United States Coast Guard Cutter USCGC Escanaba (WPG-77) who voluntarily subjected themselves to pounding seas and bitter cold in the winter North Atlantic darkness for nearly four hours to rescue survivors from the torpedoed troop transport Dorchester. Realizing the "... danger of being crushed between the rafts and the ship's side, or of being struck by a propeller blade if the engines backed, he swam in under the counter of the constantly maneuvering Escanaba and prevented many floating survivors from being caught in the suction of the screws, in one instance retrieving a loaded raft."[2] Rednour worked the longest of all retrievers and accounted for the greatest number of survivors, but finally had to quit when his rubber suit became torn.

Rednour perished early on the morning of 13 June 1943 when Escanaba disintegrated in a massive explosion of undetermined cause in the North Atlantic Ocean off Ivituut, Greenland, with a loss of 101 of the 103 men aboard.


Rednour was posthumously awarded the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for heroic action during the Dorchester rescue operations of 3 February 1943.


The United States Navy destroyer escort USS Rednour (DE-592) was named for Forrest Rednour. She was converted into a high-speed transport during construction and was in commission as such as USS Rednour (APD-102) from 1944 to 1946.

The United States Coast Guard's Forrest O. Rednour Memorial Award Program For Excellence in Food Service/Food Service Specialist of the Year also is named for Rednour.

In 2015 it was announced that the Sentinel-class fast response cutter USCGC Forrest Rednour (WPC-1129) would bear his name.[3][4]


  1. Havern, Christopher (12 February 2015). "Coast Guard Heroes: Forrest O. Rednour". Coast Guard Compass. Retrieved 2017-12-30.
  2. This quotation, from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (at is unattributed.
  3. "Acquisition Update: Coast Guard Reveals Names of FRCs 26-35". US Coast Guard. 2015-02-27. Archived from the original on 2015-03-05. Retrieved 2017-03-25. The Coast Guard recently announced the names of the 26th through 35th Sentinel-class fast response cutters through a series of posts on its official blog, the Coast Guard Compass.
  4. "Acquisition Update: Coast Guard Reveals Names of FRCs 26-35" (PDF). U.S. Coast Guard. 27 February 2015. Retrieved 2017-12-30.


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