Marshall Ralph Doak Chief Pharmacist's Mate United States Navy


Marshall R. Doak was born on 3-3-1921 in Sturgis Michigan. He spent his entire youth there, and graduated from Buchannan High School.

In 1938 he enlisted in the Navy at age 17. He went to basic training in Newport, R.I. and was assigned as a seaman 2nd class.

His first assignment was on the USS Houston and had time on other ships, including the USS Salt Lake City, USS Arapaho, and the USS Wakefield, on which

He suffered injuries from a Japanese bombing raid in Singapore while evacuating civilians during the siege of Singapore. He was one of only a few in the sick bay that survived this attack, and it changed his life. Marshall suffered a tramatic brain injury "TBI" (concussion) and schrapnel wounds from two different air attacks within 24 hours in Singapore, and has suffered from seizure disorder all his life after being discharged from the service on 10-8-1945.

Marshall served on the USS Arapaho during the time it supported the invasion of the island of Tarawa, and supported the troops on the beach in which the U. S. suffered more fatalities than on D-Day in Normandy. Marshall attended to wounded on the beach there. He also served on the USS Wakefield during the famous secret mission that ferried British troops to Singapore in the unsuccessful attempt to stop the Japanese from over taking Singapore, called Task Force 14.

Marshall also survived the famous Typhoon named "Cobra" while on the USS Arapaho, and the events on that day, in which the Captain was detained in his cabin, was, according to Mr. Doak, the background that lead to the Novel named "The Caine Mutiny" which became a movie starring Humphrey Bogart.

Mr. Doak spent his working years after the service selling medical surgical supplies and x-ray equipment until his retirement in 1982.

He married his childhood sweetheart Lorraine and had three children. In a side note, Lorraine lost her only brother over Germany while he was on his first mission as a crew member on a B-17 Flying Fortress bomber. They were on a raid over Berlin when his plane was shot down.

Marshall spends his time now attending veterans functions and is an avid reader of History, particularly on naval history, for which he was an I witness to one of the most trying times in our history, the pre and post Pearl Harbor timeline.

Marshall now lives in ST Josseph Michigan.

Marshall on the right with his brother Harold in the summer of 1945.