U.S.S. Leopold (DE-319)


Dublin Core


U.S.S. Leopold (DE-319)

Alternative Title

USS Leopold (DE-319)


World War, 1939-1945


A photograph of the USS Leopold, which was an Edsall Class destroyer escort that was laid down in Orange, Texas, in March 1943 by the Consolidated Steel Corporation. A destroyer escort’s mission included escorting merchant shipping and protecting them from submarines. The USS Leopold was named for Ensign Robert Lawrence Leopold, who was killed on the USS Arizona on December 7, 1941. The USS Leopold launched on June 12, 1943, sponsored by Miss Helen S. Leopold, who was the sister of Ensign Leopold. After commissioning ceremonies on October 18, 1943, the USS Leopold was delivered to Galveston, Texas, for firing tests. It made its maiden voyage to the port of New Orleans, Louisiana. The ship completed its shakedown training in Great Sound, Bermuda, in November 1943. After completing crew training in December 1943, the ship deployed as a destroyer escort for naval convoys. The USS Leopold was hit by a torpedo fired by the Kriegsmarine (German Navy) U-255 on March 9, 1944. The ship was badly damaged and the crew abandoned ship. The USS Leopold remained afloat until March 10, 1944, when it officially sank south of Iceland during a storm.

A notable crewmember of the USS Leopold was Francis Patrick Currey. Currey was born on August 9, 1924, in Buffalo, New York. On December 12, 1941, Currey enlisted in the United States Coast Guard, where he served on the USS Leopold as a Petty Officer Third Class. Currey’s duties included transmitting, receiving, encoding, decoding, and distributing messages obtained via the visual transmission systems of flag semaphore, visual Morse code, and flag hoist signaling. After the USS Leopold was struck by a torpedo, Currey was declared Missing in Action or Lost at Sea, presumed dead, in the Atlantic Ocean, about 400 miles south of Iceland on March 9, 1944.

In 2017, the University of Central Florida was one of three universities selected to launch the National Cemetery Administration’s Veterans Legacy Program Project. The program engaged a team of scholars to make the life stories of veterans buried in the Florida National Cemetery available to the public. The project engages UCF students in research and writing and fosters collaboration between students, faculty and local Central Florida schools to produce interactive curriculum for k-12 students. The corresponding website exhibit uses RICHES Mosaic Interface to create a digital archive of related data. The public can use the project-developed augmented-reality app at more than 100 gravesites at the Florida National Cemetery, where they can access the UCF student-authored biographies of veterans.


United States Department of the Navy


Original black and white photograph.


United States Department of the Navy

Date Created





975 KB


1 black and white photograph


Still Image


Orange, Texas

Accrual Method



History Teacher


Originally created and published by the United States Department of the Navy.

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Stoddard, James
Cravero, Geoffrey

External Reference

Abney, Barb. "VA Selects UCF Historians to Archive Stories of Deceased Veterans Veterans." UCF Today, March 13, 2017. Accessed August 9, 2017. https://today.ucf.edu/va-selects-ucf-historians-archive-stories-deceased-veterans/.
Black, Jeremy. World War Two: A Military History. London [u.a]: Routledge, 2003.


United States Department of the Navy, “U.S.S. Leopold (DE-319),” RICHES, accessed May 22, 2024, https://richesmi.cah.ucf.edu/omeka/items/show/10121.