Tucson, Arizona 2021-12-02 20:37:00 –
Florence, Arizona (KVOA)-Tucson’s former resident, Adolfo “Harpo” Seraya from Florence, died in the arms of his caretaker Eilin Daniels on Thanksgiving Day.
Harpo survived the worst naval disaster at sea aboard the USS Indianapolis, which was sunk by a torpedo in the Philippine Sea on the last day of World War II.
“Indy” broke speed records across the Pacific as it carried parts to the atomic bomb, leading to the unconditional surrender of the emperor and ending the bloody war.
Harpo is one of nearly 900 men, and the other 300 have died.
Overcoming hunger, shark attacks, delirium from salt water, and the lack of life jackets to float, Seraya was finally rescued almost four days and after night. Only 316 men came out of the sea to talk about them.
Harpo shared his experience with News 4 Tucson in 2018.
On his way back to the mainland, he said police officers punished and abused him because of his Mexican career.
Seraya said she was served only bread and water. Racism caused more psychological damage than a disaster at sea, Harpo said.
After the war, he returned to Florence High School and led the basketball team to the state championship against all difficulties.
In later years he was a basketball coach, professional cowboy and educator.
The amiable and charismatic Seraya always joked and smiled on his face. News 4 Tucson’s chief meteorologist Matt Brode presented Congressional Gold Medal to Celaya in the summer of 2020.
After the death of Seraya, only three Indy survivors are alive today.
Adolfo was 94 years old.
Remembering the late Arizona native, Adolfo ‘Harpo’ Celaya | News Source link Remembering the late Arizona native, Adolfo ‘Harpo’ Celaya | News