(DD-90: dp. 1,060; l. 314'5"; b. 31'8"; dr. 8'6"; s. 35 k.; cpl. 100; a. 
4 4", 2 1-pdrs., 12 21" tt.; cl. WICKES)

The first MCKEAN (DD-90) was laid down by Union Iron Works, San 
Francisco, Calif., 12 February 1918; launched 4 July 1918; sponsored by 
Miss Helen La Monte Ely; and commissioned at San Francisco 2O February 
1919, Lt. Comdr. Raleigh C. Williams in command. 

MCKEAN served in the Atlantic from 1919 to 1922; made a cruise to 
European waters between May and July 1919; operated primarily out of New 
York and Charleston; and decommissioned at Philadelphia 19 June 1922. 
Reclassified APD-5 on 2 August, 1940, she recommissioned at Norfolk 11 
December 1940, Lt. Comdr. Thomas Burrows in command, and resumed duty 
with the fleet. 

Following the outbreak of war in the Pacific 7 December 1941, MCKEAN 
departed the east coast 10 May 1942 and reached the South Pacific 20 
July to prepare for the invasion of the Solomons. She landed troops at 
Tulagi 7 August and during the next several months made escort and 
supply runs from bases in New Caledonia and the New Hebrides to American 
positions in the southern Solomons. She departed the South Pacific 31 
January 1943; and, after completing a cruise to the west coast for 
overhaul, she resumed escort and patrol operations between the New 
Hebrides and the Solomons 21 June. Between July and November she took 
part in amphibious operations in the central Solomons, landing troops at 
beachheads on New Georgia and Rendova. In addition she patrolled the 
waters off Guadalcanal and up the Slot to New Georgia. 

In October she completed preparations for operations n the Treasury 
Islands and Bougainville. She landed fighting men on Mono Island 27 
October, including a construction team which installed a vital search 
radar in less than a week's time. Following the brilliant American naval 
victory over Japanese forces in the Battle of Empress Augusta Bay during 
the darkness of 2 November MCKEAN steamed with a reinforcement convoy to 
Bougainville and on the 6th landed marines near Cape Torokina, Empress 
Augusta Bay. She carried additional troops to Bougainville 11 November, 
thence returned to Guadalcanal for yet another troop run.

With 185 marines embarked, MCKEAN sailed up the slot late 15 November. 
As she approached Empress Augusta Bay early 17 November, she was 
attacked by a torpedo plane which launched a torpedo off the starboard 
quarter. MCKEAN turned to avoid the deadly weapon; but at 0350 the 
torpedo struck the starboard side, exploding the after magazine and 
depth charge spaces and rupturing fuel oil tanks. Flaming oil engulfed 
MCKEAN aft of the No. 1 stack, and she lost all power and 
communications. Burning oil on the water killed men who were blown or 
jumped overboard. Her skipper, Lt. Comdr. Ralph L. Ramsey, ordered her 
abandoned at 0355; at 0400 she began to sink by the stern. He went over 
the side 12 minutes later, her forward magazine and oil tank exploded at 
0415; and her stacks disappeared at 0418. 

Sixty-four of her complement and 52 of her embarked troops died from the 
explosions or flames. The survivors were picked up by rescuing 

MCKEAN received four battle stars for World War II service.