Doug Covill,

USS KAWISHIWI AO-146 Ship's Company
and Eye Witness of the "Emergency Breakaway"

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Recollections of a Former Kawishiwi Shipmate on the "Emergency Breakaway" during Operation 'Frequent Wind' in '75 as reported by William John Miller (Kawishiwi), Bill Shipley (Hancock), and NCCM "Corky" Johnson (Hancock).

(Thanks Doug for entering this discussion - Jake)

Jake: It is with sadness that I must report that Kawishiwi Shipmate Doug Covill passed away at the age of 52, December 31, 2005
This sad news was provided the Yeoman on 20 August 2010 by Deborah Cunefare (DACunefare(at)aol(dot)com). Thank you Deb.


I don't really remember the exact links or how I took them, but I found the story starting from the Hancock site, along with the claim that the "Special K" (the USS Kawishiwi AO-146) and the Hancock had collided. Just browse around there and you'll find it.

The story I gave of what happened on the bridge is factually questionable because of how fast the whole thing was hushed up. Very shortly after we tied up to the pier after that incident they put down liberty call for the crew (unheard of at 10am!). After that there was never an "official" statement (that we heard, anyway) about what caused it. However, the Kawishiwi was a fairly small ship (we had a crew of less than 200), there were few real secrets aboard her. I do believe as fact that the "Special K" had gotten 6 degrees off course and the helmsman simply put her back on it without consulting anyone. I know for certain that there were no problems with the engineering plant until All Back Emergency was ordered.

The experience definitely left a lasting impression on me - I'll never forget looking UP to see the Hancock's flightdeck...

Doug Covill

Note: From the Yeoman: Doug had asked that his email not be published. I recently tried to contact Doug using the Email he furnished me, and it came back to me not delievered. If you are Doug, please contact me via Email and give me your new Email Address, please. It will continue to be held in confidence. =- Jake


From Jim Thoel, former KAWISHIWI Sailor
Jim Thoel writes:


Interesting story. Give my best to Doug. He was my replacement on the

Jim Thoel

Submitted 08/20/2003
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This Event seems to still be causing conflicting views - Jake

Other References to this Emergency Breakaway

Click here for some Off-Site info on Emergency Breakaways