USS PT 159
Motor torpedo boat of the ELCO 80' class
|Navy||The US Navy|
|Type||Motor torpedo boat|
|Built by||Electric Launch Company Ltd. (Elco), (Bayonne, New Jersey, U.S.A.)|
|Ordered||26 Mar 1942|
|Laid down||27 Aug 1942|
|Launched||10 Nov 1942|
|Commissioned||24 Nov 1942|
|History||Destroyed on 24 November 1945.|
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Notable events involving PT 159 include:
10 Jun 1944
Around 1430K/10, a convoy departed Langemak Bay (Megum Island anchorage) for Humboldt Bay (Hollandia).
This convoy was made up of the (troop) transports; Charles M. Russell (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), David C. Shanks (American, 12097 GRT, built 1943), Edward Lander (American, 7176 GRT, built 1944), Esso Pittsburgh (American (tanker), 11236 GRT, built 1943), I.N. van Nuys (American, 7207 GRT, built 1944), James H. Lane (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), James M. Clements (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Lewis L. Dyche (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Sea Pike (American, 7949 GRT, built 1943) and Yunnan (British, 2812 GRT, built 1934).
Also the landing craft USS LCI 444 (Lt. F.C. Gebhart, USNR) and USS LCI 446 (Lt.(jg) H.T. Coller, USNR) were with the convoy as were ten PT boats from MTB Squadron 9, these were; USS PT-126, USS PT-154, USS PT-155, USS PT-156, USS PT-157, USS PT-159, USS PT-160, USS PT-161, USS PT-162 and USS PT-187.
The convoy was escorted by the destroyer escorts USS Witter (Cdr. A.C. Davis, USNR, SO of the escort), USS Bowers (T/Lt.Cdr. F.W. Hawes, USN), USS Foreman (Lt.Cdr. C.A. Manston, USNR), destroyer HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J.S. Mesley, RAN) and minesweeper HMAS Strahan (Lt.Cdr. L.D. Williams, RANR).
Around 1650K/10, the Yunnan parted company with the convoy to return to Langemak Bay.
Around 1800K/10, the transport Tarakan (Dutch, 8183 GRT, built 1930) joined the convoy.
Around 2210K/10, the transports Jean P. Chouteau (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943) and Hanyang (British, 2865 GRT, built 1940) joined the convoy. They were escorted by the patrol vessel USS PC 1123 (Lt. W.R. Plage, USNR) which also joined the convoy.
Around 0520K/12, the James M. Clements parted company with the convoy to proceed to Aitape escorted by USS PC-1123.
The convoy arrived at Humboldt Bay around noon on the 13th. (1)
1 May 1945
Operation Oboe I, Allied landings at Tarakan.
The Cruiser Covering Group and Fire Support Group (Rear-Admiral R.S. Berkey, USN), known as Task Group 74.3, was made up of the light cruisers USS Phoenix (T/Capt. J.H. Duncan, USN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral R.S. Berkey, USN), USS Boise (T/Capt. W.M. Downes, USN), HMAS Hobart (Capt. R.S. Dowling, RAN) and the destroyers USS Nicholas (T/Cdr. D.C. Lyndon, USN, with COMDESRON 21, T/Capt. J.K.B. Ginder, USN on board), USS Fletcher (T/Lt.Cdr. R.R. Green, USN), USS Jenkins (T/Cdr. P.D. Gallery, USN), USS O'Bannon (T/Lt.Cdr. J.A. Pridmore, USN), USS Taylor (T/Lt.Cdr. H.H. de Laureal, USN) and HMAS Warramunga (Cdr. M.J. Clark, DSC, RAN).
The Tarakan Attack Group (Rear-Admiral F.B. Royal, USN) was made up of the following units; Task Group 78.1 was made up of the Amphibious Force Command Ship USS Rocky Mount (T/Capt. F.A. Hardesty, USN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral F.B. Royal, USN). Task Group 70.1.9 was the MTB support unit, which was made up the Motor Torpedo Boat Tender USS Wachapreague (Lt.Cdr. H.A. Stewart, USNR, with COMMTBRON 36, Lt.Cdr. F.D. Tappaan, USNR on board) and the following Motor Torpedo Boats, MTBRON 9 made up of USS PT-156, USS PT-157, USS PT-159, USS PT-160, USS PT-161, USS PT-162, USS PT-187, USS PT-318 and USS PT-319 as well as MTBRON 36 made up of USS PT-522, USS PT-523, USS PT-524, USS PT-525, USS PT-526, USS PT-527, USS PT-528, USS PT-529, USS PT-530, USS PT-531 and USS PT-532. MTB RON 9 was to operate from Malamaui and MTB RON 36 was to operate from Tawi Tawi. Task Group 78.1.11 was the transport unit made up of Landing Ships HMAS Manoora (A/Capt. A.P. Cousin, RANR(S)), HMAS Westralia (A/Cdr. E.W. Livingston, RANR(S)), Landing Ship Dock USS Rushmore (Lt.Cdr. E.A. Jansen, USNR) and the Attack Cargo Ship Titania (T/Cdr.(Retd.) M.W. Callahan, USN). Task Group 78.1.12 was the LST unit, which was made up the following LST's; USS LST-466 (Lt. B.M. Bryant, Jr. USCG, with COMLSTFLOT 7, T/Capt. G.A. Sinclair, USN, on board), USS LST-67 (Lt. R.L. McGirl, USNR), USS LST-171 (Lt. M.B. Taylor, USNR), USS LST-467 (Lt. M.B. Taylor, USNR), USS LST-562 (Lt. F.P. Lawrence, USNR), USS LST-584 (Lt. D.B. Russell, USNR), USS LST-585 (Lt. A.P. Morse, USNR), USS LST-590 (Lt. B.J. Arnett, USN), USS LST-613 (Lt. H.P. Rollinck, USNR), USS LST-626 (Lt. M.J. Codoner, Jr., USNR), USS LST-637 (Lt. R.A. Vielhaber, USNR), USS LST-667 (Lt. W.S. Biernat, USN), USS LST-697 (Lt. J.E. Tanner, USNR), USS LST-711 (Lt. F.C. Huntley, USNR), USS LST-742 (Lt. W.W. Holmes, USNR), USS LST-743 (Lt. F.H. Emerick, USNR), USS LST-924 (Lt. L. Tinsley, USN), USS LST-993 (Lt. A.W. Bates, USNR), USS LST-1025 (Lt. C.L. Curfman, USNR), USS LST-1027 (Lt. P.J. Shropshire, Jr., USNR) and USS LST-1035 (Lt. M. Perry, USNR). Task Group 78.1.13 was the LSI unit, which was made up the following LSI(L)'s; USS LCI(L)-624 (Lt. E.F. Harris, USNR, with COMLCIFLOT 24, Cdr. A.V. Jannotta, USNR, on board), USS LCI(L)-625 (Lt.(jg) C.E. Bole, USNR), USS LCI(L)-626 (Lt.(jg) L.H. Keckler, USNR), USS LCI(L)-634 (Lt.(jg) A. Gain, USNR), USS LCI(L)-655 (Lt.(jg) E. Kingdon Hurlock, USNR), USS LCI(L)-699 (Lt.(jg) P.B. Gates, USNR), USS LCI(L)-700 (Lt.(jg) J.E. Howe, USNR), USS LCI(L)-712 (), USS LCI(L)-1008 (Lt.(jg) R.I. Basch, USNR), USS LCI(L)-1025 (Lt.(jg) W.C. Kingsley, USNR), USS LCI(L)-1072 (Lt.(jg) M.B. Kirby, USNR) and USS LCI(L)-1076 (Lt.(jg) H.S. Fish, USNR). Task Group 78.1.14 was the LSM unit, which was made up the following LSM's; USS LSM-269 (Lt. H.T. Turner, Jr., USNR, with COMLSMGR 19, T/Lt.Cdr. W.A. Burgett, USN, on board), USS LSM-151 (Lt. W.H. Fitzgerald, USNR), USS LSM-224 (Lt. D.B. Wrensch, USNR) and USS LSM-267 (Lt. R.F. Ruben, USNR). Task Group 78.1.15 was the LCT unit, which was made up the following LCT's; USS LCT-1317 (With COMLCTgR 74, Lt. DeMoss, USNR on board), USS LCT-1310, USS LCT-1312, USS LCT-1314, USS LCT-1316, USS LCT-1319, USS LCT-1321, USS LCT-1323, USS LCT-1325, USS LCT-1327, USS LCT-1329 and USS LCT-1331. [LCT's were being towed to the landing area.] Task Group 78.1.21 was the Screen, which was made up of the destroyers USS Waller (T/Cdr. H.leR. Thompson, Jr., USN), USS Philip (T/Cdr. J.B. Rutter, Jr., USN), USS Bailey (T/Lt.Cdr. A.F. Johnson, USN), USS Bancroft (T/Lt.Cdr. C.E. Pond, USN), USS Caldwell (Lt.Cdr. D.R. Robinson, USNR), USS Drayton (T/Lt.Cdr. V.A. Dybdal, USN), USS Smith (T/Lt.Cdr. E.H. Huff, USN). and the frigates HMAS Barcoo (A/Lt.Cdr. C.G. Hill, RANR(S)), HMAS Burdekin (Lt.Cdr. T.S. Marchington, RD, RANR(S)) and HMAS Hawkesbury (Lt.Cdr. H.J. Weston, RANR(S)). Task Group 78.1.22 was the Destroyer Escort Unit, made up of the escort destroyers USS Formoe (T/Lt.Cdr. J.C. Spencer, USN) and USS Charles E. Brannon (Lt.Cdr. O.M. Shirey, Jr., USNR). Task Group 78.1.3 was the Support Unit which was made up of the following units. Task Group 78.1.31 was the LCS Unit and was made up of the following LCS's; USS LCS(L)-50 (Lt. B.T. Clark, USNR, with T/Cdr. D.H. Day, USN on board), USS LCS(L)-8 (?), USS LCS(L)-28 (Lt. R.H. Bost, USNR), USS LCS(L)-43 (Lt.(jg) E.A. Blakley, USNR), USS LCS(L)-44 (J.M. Leggat, USNR) and USS LCS(L)-48 (Lt. D.E. Widel, USNR). Task Group 78.1.32 was the LCI(R) Unit and was made up of the following LCI(R)'s; USS LCI(R)-71, USS LCI(R)72, USS LCI(R)74 and USS LCI(R)338. Task Group 78.1.33 was the LCI(M) Unit and was made up of the following LCI(M)'s; USS LCI(M)-359 (Ens. T.S. Adair, USNR) and USS LCI(M)-362 (Lt.(jg) R.W. Kearns, USNR). Task Group 78.1.34 was the Demolition Unit and was made up of the following USS LCI(D)-29 (Lt. J.F. McNamara, USNR) and USS LCI(D)-228 (Lt.(jg) R.W. Kearns, USNR). Task Group 78.1.41 was Control Unit Red and was made up of; USS PC-1120 (Lt. J.R. Goodrich, USNR) and USS LCI(L)-624 (this last was assigned to this unit for the assault only). Task Group 78.1.42 was Control Unit Green and was made up of; USS SC-698 (?) and USS SC- 746 (?). Task Group 78.1.5 was the minesweeping unit and was made up of the high speed transport USS Cofer (Lt. H.C. McClees, USNR) and the minesweepers (YMS's) USS YMS-51 (Lt.(jg) A.L. Giesenschlag, USNR), USS YMS-68 (Lt. G.L. O'Neil, USNR), USS YMS-73 (Lt. J.H. Frederick, USNR), USS YMS-313 (Lt.(jg) W.H. Reibold, USNR), USS YMS-314 (Lt.(jg) J.W. Easton, USNR), USS YMS-329 (Lt. W.L. Ballew, USNR), USS YMS-334 (Lt.(jg) P.G. Rafferty, USNR), USS YMS-340 (Lt. P. Schminke, USNR), USS YMS-363 (Lt. F.A. Struve, Jr., USNR), USS YMS-364 (Lt. C.K. Soper, USNR) and USS YMS-481 (Lt.(jg) t.D. Anglin, USNR). These were split up into four Task Groups; Task Unit 78.1.51 was made up of four of the YMS's, Task Unit 78.1.52 was also made up of four of the YMS's, Task Unit 78.1.53 was made up of three of the YMS's and Task Unit 78.1.54 was made up of the USS Cofer and four LCVP's. Task Group 78.1.6 was the Service Unit, made up of Task Unit 78.1.61 (the Survey Unit) made up of the survey vessel (frigate) HMAS Lachlan (Lt.Cdr. G.D. Tancred, RAN, with Cdr. K.E. Oom, RAN on board) and the net tender USS Satinleaf (Lt. Lt. P.F. Taylor, USN). Task Unit 78.1.62 (the Salvage Unit) made up of the tugs USS ATR-61 (Lt. W.M. Heywood, USNR) and USS Vireo (Lt.(jg) M.E. Seymour, USNR). Task Unit 78.1.63 (the Fire Fighting Unit) made up of the LCI(L)'s, LCI(L)-185 [this can't be correct as this LCI had been transferred to the Royal Navy on completion and was sunk of Normandy on 6 June 1944.], USS LCS(L)-961 (?), USS LCS(L)-1000 (?) and USS LCS(L)-1071 (?). Task Group 78.1.7 was the Press Unit, which was made up of the patrol vessel USS PCE(R)-849 (Lt. C. Sanders, USNR), USS LCI(L)-635 (Lt. H. Hopkins, USNR) and the small army cargo ship FP 47.
The Cruiser Covering Force and Fire Support Group departed Subic Bay on 24 April 1945. The minesweeping and hydrographic groups left Leyte on 22 April, joined at Zamboanga with other units coming from Malabang, Mindanao, and arrived at the objective on 27 April, and commenced minesweeping and hydrographic survey.
Minesweeping was difficult, because the many types of mines encountered and water conditions. The approach of the main force through preferred ' Track Baker ', south of Menoeloen Island, had to be abandoned because of the possibility that mines there had not yet been swept. This necessitated approaching though ' Track Able ' which afforded deeper water, but was much less in width. A red conical top buoy and a black top buoy of Japanese origin were found by the Hydrographic Group and left remaining, the latter buoy being the mid-channel. A buoy was planted at Point Whirlaway, buoy 2 south of Point Equinox, and buoy 3 was planted marking the break-off point for Tracks Able and Baker. Buoys 1 and 4 were also planted, as ordered, in positions as previously charted. The Hydrographic Group on the afternoon of ' Peter minus One day ' [Peter Day was 1 May 1945] installed fixed whire lights on the mid-channel buoy (Point Whirlaway) and numbers 2 and 4 buoys to aid the approach of the Attack Group. The harbour entrance range was lighted. Beach reconnaissance and marking of gaps through obstacles for assault waves and slots for LST's were completed on 30 April, without casualties, despite enemy mortar and machine gun fire from the beach. These groups retired each night prior to ' Peter Day ' at the objective.
On 27 April, ten motor torpedo boats arrived at Tawi Tawi and commenced operations on the east coast of northern Borneo the following day.
On 26 April 1945, the ' Pulau Sadau ' attack echolon daparted Morotai Straits. The Sadau attack echolon was known as Task Group 78.1.16 and was made up from ships from other units which were to rejoin their repective units on ' Peter Day '. The following ships were part of Task Group 78.1.16; USS Philip, USS PC-1120, USS LST-667 with USS LCT-1331 in tow, USS LSM-151, USS LSM-359, USS LSM-362, USS LCI(L)-172, USS LCI(L)-185 [???], USS LCI(L)-961, USS LCI(L)-1000, USS LCI(L)-1071, USS LCS-8 and USS LCS-48.
The main assault force departed on the 27th. Both echolons involved in the two separate assaults arrived in their respective areas off the designated beaches on time, the main assault force arriving one hour ahead of time to allow for the transit to the anchorage area of the last ships of the strung out approach formation through the narrow track ' Able '. The landings proceeded exactly as had been planned.
The preliminary naval bombardment was conducted by the Cruiser Covering Group on ' Peter Day ' [1 May 1945] with only the destroyers participating. This Group had also covered the Minesweeping Group in their activities from 27 April to 1 May. The Minesweeping Group on 27 April first made exploratory sweeps from the hundred fathom curve to ' Point Whirlaway ' with negative results. They then next obtained negative results in sweeps of Areas ' Fork ', ' Spoon ' and ' Knife ' to Point ' Baker '. One thousand yards north and south of the sides of Area ' Knife ', west of Point ' Baker ', four magnetic mines were swept. LCVP sweeps, the same day, explored Spatula and swept two chemical horned type mines south-west of Menoeloen Island, apparently newly laid. The Covering Force could not safely proceed west of ' Point Baker ', so did not. On 28 April, three magnetic mines in area ' Knife ', and seven enemy horned mines were swept in area ' Spatula ', south-west of Menoeloen Island. Two magnetic mines were still known to be in area ' Spatula ' and not yet swept. One of these magnetic mines self detonated near a YMS in area ' Knife ', west of ' Point Baker ', approach ' Track Baker ', after two days of sweeping, was still not considered safe for the passage of the Cruiser Covering Force.
On 29 April, magnetic sweeps were negative in areas ' Knife ' and ' Spatula '. A floating mine was sunk by gunfire four miles east of No.2 buoy. Nine additional enemy contact mines were swept south-west of Menoeloen Island. A one-thousand yard check sweep was made on both sides of ' Approach Track Baker '. Area ' Plate ' was swept within 1200 yards of the beaches and the LCVP's made two sweeps within 400 yards of the pier, all negative. By this time, five magnetic mines in area ' Knife ' were still unaccounted for, as well as two west of the southern tip of Tarakan. Sweepers on 30 April were to continue their magnetic and acoustic sweeps in areas ' Knife ', ' Spatula ' and ' Plate ' and leave by the north channel (' Track Able ') alone. The cruisers could not yet safely venture into area ' Knife '.
On 30 April, two influence mines were swept west of the south tip of Tarakan, and two additional enemy mines south-west of Menoeloen Island were swept after the landing and fire support parties had passed through route ' Baker '. Later, one of the fire support destroyers, USS Jenkins, on retiring, struck a mine 1000 yards off the center of ' Track Baker '. The sweepers swept two more mines in ' Approach Track Baker ' immediately after this incident. Five ' influence ' mines were reported removed at an unknown location. Because ' Track Baker ' was now not considered safe, the sweepers concentrated on ' Track Able ' which was still found negative. That night the Attack Group safely transited ' Track Able ', as had been recommended, and began the assault on ' Peter Day ', 1 May 1945.
The Sadau Attack Force meanwhile had landed around 0800I/30 which was on shedule. They landed without opposition. The landings were completed two hours later.
At 1527I/30, the Commander Task Group 74.3, reported the USS Jenkins having been mined. Casualties were light despite the destroyer being extensively damaged.
Around 1730I/30, two mines were reported swept in the area where USS Jenkins had been mined. This was on ' Approach Track Baker '.
Around 1900I/30, USS Wachapreague and MTBRON 36 (minus six of the MTB's) departed Tawi Tawi for the objective area.
Around 2000I/30, USS Jenkins was reported to be dead in the water and leaking.
At 2010I/30, USS Waller reported hearing a torpedo noise and went on to investigate. Four minutes later she attacked a good sound contact with depth charges. Half an hour later she reported oil on the water and then delivered another depth charge attack on that spot. At 2045I/30, she lost contact. USS Formoe was then ordered to remain in the area and conduct an A/S search.
At 0520I/1, the order ' Deploy ' was given to go ahead with the landings. Ten minutes later USS Rocky Mount anchored in berth 4 in Area ' Mike '.
At 0630I/1, USS LST-562 reported a torpedo passing underneath her bow. The torpedo came from the direction off Cape Pasir. Nine minutes later destroyers opened fire at the mouth of the river near Cape Pasir as it was considered likely the torpedo had been fired from here. At the same time USS LST-562 reported a small submarine surfacing astern of her which immediately submerged again. HMAS Barcoo was ordered to investigate.
At 0646I/1, USS LST-637 launched the first LVT [Landing Vehicle Tracked] as the landing operations commenced. By 0705I/1, all LVT's from various ships had been launched.
At 0651I/1, USS Rushmore launched LCM's and USS Titania had launched all her boats.
At 0654I/1, HMAS Manoora reported her boats in the water. At the same time USS Rushmore reported a torpedo glanced off her port beam without damage. It came from the direction of Cape Pasir.
At 0655I/1, the dawn Combat Air Patrol arrived on station. At the same time USS LST-467 launched LVT's. All LVT's was launched by 0659I/1.
At 0700I/1, All assault causeway LST's and USS Rushmore on station in ' LST Area Two '. HMAS Manoora, HMAS Westralia and USS Titania were all on station in ' Transport Area Mike '.
At 0702I/1, USS LST-1027 launched the first causeway.
At 0705I/1, CTU 78.1.12 (LST Unit) reported all LVT's to have been launched.
At 0707I/1, the Support Line formed up.
At 0712I/1, USS Rushmore reported all her boats to have been launched while boat waves from HMAS Manoora were observed proceeding to the Line of Depature.
At 0714I/1, LCM's from USS Rushmore were observed forming up well behind ' LST Area ' so as to remain out of the way.
At 0722I/1, USS SC-746 reported to be on station on the ' Line of Departure '.
At 0724I/1, All waver for landing area ' Green ' were formed up.
At 0725I/1, USS LST-637 stood out beyond ' LST Area Two ' to clear the area.
At 0726I/1, USS LST-584 and USS LST-585 launched causeways. The causeways from USS LST-590, USS LST-711, USS LST-743, USS LST-993 and USS LST-1027 had meanwhile also been launched.
At 0731I/1, the ' Line of Departure ' was formed.
At 0733I/1, waves 1, 2 and 3 for ' Red Beach ' were formed up and were moving to the ' Line of Departure '.
At 0736I/1, the LCS Support Group was ordered into position ahead of the ' Line of Departure '.
At 0738I/1, CTG 78.1 ordered CTU 78.1.5 to resweep area ' Spatula ' in ordered that ' Track Baker ' may be made safe. Area ' Platter ' also was to be swept for mines.
At 0739I/1, B-24's were observed coming in for air strikes on the beach area. At the same time the Engineer Demolition Party was dispatched from USS LST-667.
At 0742I/1, all waves for ' Red Beach ' were formed up.
At 0747I/1, CTU 78.1.3 reported all ships of the Support Unit ready and on station.
At 0750I/1, air strikes on the beach area commenced, though this was a little late.
at 0756I/1, the first wave was dispatched to ' Red ' and ' Green ' beaches. LCI(M)'s opened mortar fire. At the same time four B-24's came over for an air strike on the beach area.
At 0800I/1, LCS(L)'s opened fire with 3" and 40mm guns.
At 0801I/1, the second wave was dispatched to ' Red ' and ' Green ' beaches.
At 0802I/1, six B-24's came over for an air strike on the beach area. Their bombs landed right on the target.
At 0806I/1, the third wave was dispatched to ' Red ' and ' Green ' beaches.
At 0809I/1, Red flares were sent up by support craft, to direct naval gunfire to shift inland.
At 0811I/1, wave four was dispatched to ' Green ' beach.
At 0815I/1, the first wave landed on ' Green ' beach followed one minute later by the first wave on ' Red ' beach.
At 0818I/1, the second wave landed on ' Green ' beach.
At 0819I/1, the Reserve Battalion from HMAS Westralia was observed moving up to the ' Line of Departure '.
At 0820I/1, the second wave landed on ' Red ' beach.
At 0822I/1, CTG 78.1 directed the reserves to be held at the ' Line of Departure '.
At 0824I/1, USS LST-590 moved up to the ' Line of Departure '.
At 0825I/1, the third wave landed on ' Green ' beach followed one minute later by the third wave on ' Red ' beach.
At 0826I/1, the fifth wave was despatched to ' Red ', ' Yellow ' and ' Green ' beaches. Also the fourth wave landed on ' Green ' beach.
At 0829I/1, USS LST-697 and USS LST-711 moved up to the ' Line of Departure ' with causeways.
At 0831I/1, the sixth waves were dispatched to ' Red ' and ' Green ' beaches. Also USS LST-993 moved up to the ' Line of Departure '.
At 0833I/1, Task Unit 78.1.3 ceased immediate gunfire support scheduled firings.
At 0836I/1, troops reported covering positions were taken without opposition. Bridge was intact and landings were made practically dry.
At 0839I/1, the fifth wave landed on ' Red ', ' Yellow ', and ' Green ' beaches.
At 0844I/1, the sixth wave landed on ' Green one ' beach followed one minute later by the sixth wave on ' Red two ' beach.
At 0845I/1, Red Beachmaster Unit reported ' Red two ' beach to be obstructed, with large logs and a defensive wall on the beach.
At 0847I/1, haze, smoke and dust obscured the beach area.
At 0848I/1, the Air Force requisted permission to make another air strike.
At 0850I/1, the Australian Principal Beachmaster Advanced Command Post indicated the condition of LST slots on ' Yellow ' beach. Extensive bull-dozing was required on some slots. He also indicated that ' Red ' beach was not ready for LST's. Also at this time all causeway LST's were observed on the ' Line of Departure '.
At 0906I/1, CTG 78.1 ordered CTU 78.1.4 to ' land the reserves '.
At 0907I/1, USS LST-584 was ordered to beach.
At 0915I/1, the seventh wave, containing the reserves was sent into ' Green ' beaches. Also USS Rushmore reported that her LCM's were completely unloaded.
At 0918I/1, USS LST-584 beached on ' Red ' beach slot 1 with causeway beached dry.
At 0920I/1, the eight wave was dispatched to ' Green ' beach.
At 0921I/1, USS LST-585, with causeways, beached on ' Red ' beach slot 2.
At 0923I/1, USS LST-590 was ordered to beach.
At 0925I/1, the ninth and last wave was dispatched to ' Green ' beach.
At 0927I/1, a B-25 strike on enemy barracks commenced. Also the seventh wave landed.
At 0930I/1, USS LST-171 was ordered to beach.
At 0931I/1, USS LST-743, with causeways, beached on ' Yellow ' beach slot 5.
At 0932I/1, the eight wave landed.
At 0936I/1, USS LST-590, with causeways, beached on ' Red ' beach slot 3.
At 0937I/1, CTG 78.1 ordered general unloading.
At 0939I/1, the ninth wave landed.
At 0941I/1, USS LST-711, with causeways, beached on ' Yellow ' beach slot 4.
At 0955I/1, USS LST-993, with causeways, beached on ' Yellow ' beach slot 6.
At 1001I/1, USS LST-1027, with causeways, beached on ' Yellow ' beach slot 7. The line up of LST's was now as follows; Slot 1, Red Beach, USS LST-584, Slot 2, Red Beach, USS LST-585, Slot 3, Red Beach, USS LST-590, Slot 4, Yellow Beach, USS LST-711, Slot 5, Yellow Beach, USS LST-743, Slot 6, Yellow Beach, USS LST-993, Slot 7, Yellow Beach, USS LST-1027.
At 1020I/1, CTU 78.1.4 directed LCI's to proceed to north pier and unload two at a time.
At 1022I/1, enemy mortar fire landed in the water off ' Green Two ' beach.
At 1024I/1, USS LCI(L)-625 and USS LCI(L)-1025 were observed alongside USS LST-590 on the beach.
At 1025I/1, artillery fire was observed near ' Green Two ' beach.
At 1030I/1, USS LST-584 and USS LST-590 started unloading.
At 1034I/1, LCI Fire Support Craft observed heading back from the beach to form a picket line. Also Brigadier Whitehead and his staff went ashore.
At 1035I/1, USS SC-698 directed USS Titania and HMAS Westralia to head towards ' Green Two ' beach.
At 1042I/1, HMAS Manoora ordered to direct small craft with cargo to ' Green Two ' beach for unloading.
At 1104I/1, USS LCI(L)-634 and USS LCI(L)-1076 were observed alongside USS LST-584 on ' Red ' beach.
At 1106I/1, Captain Dugan, Chief of Staff, and party left USS Rocky Mount for an inspection of the beaches.
At 1125I/1, a huge explosion was observed to the right of ' Green ' beach.
At 1142I/1, mortar fire was observed falling on the beachhead area.
At 1143I/1, USS LCI(L)-1076 was unloaded and retracted from the beach.
At 1145I/1, USS LST-742 ordered to beach on the starboard side of USS LST-584.
At 1150I/1, nine LCI(L)'s have unloaded. USS LCI(L)-699 was awaiting instructions.
At 1154I/1, USS LST-171 beached 650 feet off the beach aft of USS LST-584 and USS LST-585 on ' Red ' beach.
At 1157I/1, USS LCS-44 was fired upon by enemy mortar one mile south of ' Green Two ' beach.
At 1204I/1, the Commander 26th Brigade, 9th Australian Division, assumed command ashore of his troops.
At 1216I/1, USS LST-171 retracted from ' Red ' beach still unable to beach in a cleared area.
At 1230I/1, the ' Line of Departure ' was dissolved.
At 1308I/1, USS O'Bannon was relieved of fire support duties and was ordered to stand by USS Jenkins.
At 1315I/1, USS Wachapreague and MTB RON 36 (minus 6 PT boats) stood in and reported to CTG 78.1 for duty.
At 1325I/1, the Principal Beachmaster indicated that it was now impossible to unload more LCM's and LCT's.
At 1339I/1, it was reported that the docks ware usable by hand labor only. The crane on the long pier was reported to be unserviceable.
At 1349I/1, the unloading of LCVP's and LCM's stopped due to the rapid falling of the tide and consequent stranding of the boats.
At 1356I/1, the unloading of LCT's bogged down by mud.
At 1401I/1, it was reported that unloading at the piers was limited to the landing of bulk stores. Damage hindered unloading at the southern pier.
At 1437I/1, it was reported that the northern pier was found to be intact but that the tide was hindering unloading.
at 1454I/1, CTG 78.1 directed no night retirement from the objective area because of the slowness in unloading and so that good advantage might be taken of the high tide. No real enemy opposition had been encountered so far.
At 1500I/1, USS Cofer and the YMS minesweepers reported to CTU 78.1.2 in USS Waller for duty as A/S screen for the night.
At 1524I/1, CTG 78.1 ordered all ships to maintain sufficient armed sentries for protection against hostile small craft and swimmers.
At 1538I/1, Captain Dugan and party returned to USS Rocky Mount after inspecting beachhead and conferring with Landing Craft Control Officer, Beach Group Commander and the Commander, 26th Infantery Bridgade.
At 1539I/1, USS SC-746 reported that there was a possible ' Q ' boat unmannned in bushes north of Cape Karis.
At 1557I/1, Rear-Admiral Berkey came aboard USS Rocky Mount.
At 1600I/1, HMAS Hobart and HMAS Warramunga were released by CTG 78.1 and departed the Tarakan area for Hollandia via Morotai.
At 1610I/1, USS ATR-61 ordered to tow USS Jenkins alongside USS Phoenix and remain to assist.
At 1715I/1, Rear-Admiral Berkey left USS Rocky Mount.
At 1736I/1, two LCS's were stationed off Sadau to prevent movement of enemy craft into the anchorage during the night.
At 1942I/1, CTG 78.1 advised all ships that general unloading would continue during the night and that recognition of our own small craft was mandatory.
At 2008I/1, all beached LST's turned on lights and illuminated the beach and docks.
At 2044I/1, USS LST-697 was ordered to proceed to Causeway 1.
At 2045I/1, USS LST-924 was ordered to proceed to Causeway 6.
At 2047I/1, all ships and craft were ordered to use full running lights in the Transport Area.
At 2052/1, USS LST-613 was ordered to proceed to Causeway 4.
At 2100I/1, USS LST-171 was ordered to proceed to Causeway 2.
At 2120I/1, USS LST-626 was ordered to proceed to Causeway 4.
At 2130I/1, USS LST-171 beached.
At 2137I/1, USS LST-613 beached. By 2200I/1, USS LST-626, USS LST-697 USS LST-924 were also beached.
At 0048I/2, the beach was reported to be under mortar fire.
At 0155I/2, HMAS Manoora reported that she was completely unloaded.
At 0653I/2, CTG 78.1 ordered USS VireoUSS LST-584 to assist in retracting any of the LST's from the beach.
At 0710I/2, CTG 78.1 ordered USS LST-1025 and USS LST-1035 to assist other LST's in retracting from the beach.
at 0746I/2, CTG 78.1 ordered USS ATR-61, unless required by USS Jenkins, to report to CTU 78.1.4 to aid in retraction of LST's.
At 0800I/2, B-25 bombers commenced a call air strike 1000 yards in front of own front lines.
At 0906I/2, CTG 78.1 ordered USS LCS-8 to destroy two small boats east of Cape Pasir.
At 0916I/2, PT'boats with B-25 cover commenced operating to the north of Tarakan island.
At 1028I/2, Major General Wootten, General Officer Commanding 9th Australian Division, came aboard USS Rocky Mount having been flown in from Morotai.
At 1045I/2, the destroyer USS Robinson (T/Cdr. R.E. Malpass, USN) arrived.
At 1050I/2, USS Vireo was ordered to relieve USS ATR-61 and reported to CTG 74.3 to tow USS Jenkins to Leyte. USS ATR-61 was to return to the Transport Area to assist LST's.
At 1100I/2, Major General Wootten went ashore to the Brigade Headquarters.
At 1125I/2, an air strike by three B-25's was observed north-west of the beach area.
At 1127I/2, the tanker USS Winooski (Lt.Cdr. T.B. Christenson, USNR) arrived.
At 1130I/2, Rear-Admiral Berkey came aboard USS Rocky Mount.
At 1200I/2, HMAS Manoora, HMAS Westralia and USS Rushmore escorted by USS Bancroft and USS Charles E. Brannon departed the Tarakan area for Morotai to reload and then return.
Also around 1200I/2, enemy shells landed near USS Wachapreague. PT boats alongside shifted berth to avoid being hit by gunfire of splinters.
At 1220I/2, CTU 78.1.13 reported that all LCI(L)'s were unloaded.
At 1258I/2, only one LCT was reported unloaded, four LCT's were waiting for LST's on the beach to retract.
At 1310I/2, Rear-Admiral Berkey left the flagship with Rear-Admiral Royal. They went ashore to confer with Brigadier Whitehead and inspect the beachhead.
At 1322I/2, CTG 78.1 directed six LCI(L)'s for screening duty to report to CTU 78.1.3 prior to 1700I/2.
At 1530I/2, camouflaged batteries at Cape Djoeata (in the north-west of Tarakan Island) sank USS YMS-481 and damaged USS YMS-334 and YMS-364. USS Cofer and USS LCS-8 and USS LCS-28 silenced the battery. USS LCS-44, USS LCI(L)-1008 and LCVP's rescued survivors close inshore under direct enemy fire. USS YMS-51 and USS YMS-340 which were also sweeping in the area were not hit.
At 1530I/2, Rear-Admiral Royal and Major General Wootten returned to USS Rocky Mount.
At 1543I/2, four B-25's strafed and bombed the Cape Djoeata area. after they were finished, USS Fletcher bombarded the same area.
At 1555I/2, COMLSTGR 44 shifted his flag to USS LST-924.
At 1600I/2, Major General Wootten departed for Morotai by aircraft with Captain Hains, Assistant Chief of Staff to Rear-Admiral Royal.
At 1630I/2, four P-38's also made low bombing and strafing runs on gun emplacements on Cape Djoeata.
At 1635I/2, USS YMS-340 and USS YMS-364 put wounded men from the YMS engagement on board USS Rocky Mount.
At 1740I/2, USS LCS-44 sighted a mine in position 03°23'8"N, 117°30'E. CTU 78.1.3 was later ordered to search for and destroy this mine.
At 1811I/2, USS Fletcher took on board wounded from the YMS engagement from USS LCS-44. She later transferred them to USS Rocky Mount.
At 2015I/2, CTG 78.1 directed all LST's to illuminate all causeways and beaches but at ' Flash Red ' to darken ship until alert is over.
At 0751I/3, USS ATR-61 stood in to assist LST's retracting from the beach.
At 0830I/3, USS Phoenix proceeded to the vicinity of Sadau Island to fire on enemy coastal batteries and installations in the Cape Djoeata area. She opened fire at 0850I/3.
At 0920I/3, USS LST-697 retracted from the beach.
At 0925I/3, USS LST-711 retracted from the beach.
At 0928I/3, USS LST-626 retracted from the beach.
At 0929I/3, PT-boats made runs parallel to the beach to create waves to assist in retracting the LST's.
At 0931I/3, USS LST-171 retracted from the beach.
At 0940I/3, USS LST-613 retracted from the beach.
At 1000I/3, CTU 78.1.2 assumed control of naval gunfire support.
At 1010I/3, USS LST-924 retracted from the beach. USS LST-584, USS LST-585, USS LST-590, USS LST-711, USS LST-743, USS LST-993 and USS LST-1027 remained on the beach.
At 1025I/3, Rear-Admiral Berkey came aboard USS Rocky Mount. He departed again at 1103I/3.
At 1033I/3, USS Phoenix returned from the Sadau Island area on completion of her bombarding duties.
At 1300I/3, USS Phoenix, USS Boise, USS Nicholas, USS Taylor and USS O'Bannon departed the Tarakan area to return to Subic Bay where they arrived around 1100I/5.
At 1700I/3, CTG 78.1, in USS Rocky Mount, escorted by USS Caldwell, departed Tarakan for Morotai where they arrived around 1400I/5. Command had been turned over to Captain Gray (CTG 78.1.16) on board USS Formoe.
At 1830I/3, CTG 78.1.92 with COMLSTGR 44 in USS LST-924 with USS LST-171, USS LST-613, USS LST-626 and USS LST-697 departed the Tarakan area escorted by USS Philip, USS SC-746, USS YMS-51 and USS YMS-363. Seven LST's were still fast in the mud on the beach. The remaining eight other LST's had commenced to unload from the stream. Unloading continued slowly but steadily as did the fighting on the island against increasing opposition. CTG 78.1.92 arrived at Morotai around 1730I/5.
[The report of CTG 78.1 ends here.]
At 0700I/5, HMAS Manoora and HMAS Westralia departed Morotai to return to Tarakan with reinforcements and supplies. They were still escorted by USS Bancroft and USS Charles E. Brannon. They arrived at Tarakan around 0830I/7.
At 1800I/5, CTG 78.1.93 made up of USS LCI(L)-624, USS LCI(L)-625, USS LCI(L)-626, USS LCI(L)-634, USS LCI(L)-655, USS LCI(L)-699, USS LCI(L)-700, USS LCI(L)-712, USS LCI(L)-1008, USS LCI(L)-1025, USS LCI(L)-1072, USS LCI(L)-1076, USS LCI(R)-71, USS LCI(R)-72, USS LCI(R)-74, USS LCI(R)-338, USS LCI(M)-359, USS LCI(M)-362, USS LCI(D)-29, USS LCI(D)-228 departed the Tarakan area for Morotai where they arrived around 1700I/8. They were escorted by USS Waller, USS Cofer, USS PC-1120, USS YMS-6, USS YMS-68, USS YMS-73, USS YMS-313, USS YMS-314, USS YMS-329, USS YMS-334 and USS YMS-364.
At 1200I/7, CTG 78.1.94, made up of the tanker USS Winooski and the frigate HMAS Hawkesbury departed Tarakan for Polloc Harbour where they arrived around 1430I/8.
At 1730I/7, USS LST-924, USS LST-171, USS LST-613, USS LST-626, USS LST-697, escorted by USS Philip and USS Caldwell, departed Morotai for Tarakan with supplies.
At 1730I/7, having unloaded, HMAS Manoora and HMAS Westralia departed Tarakan to return to Morotai. They were still escorted by USS Bancroft and USS Charles E. Brannon. They arrived at Morotai around 1600I/9.
At 0800I/8, CTG 78.1.96 made up of USS LST-466, USS LST-467, USS LST-562, USS LST-637, USS LST-742, USS LST-1035, USS LCI(L)-635, USS LCI(L)-961, USS LCI(L)-985, USS LCI(L)-1000, USS LCI(L)-1071, USS ATR-61 towing USS YMS-51 departed Tarakan for Morotai where they arrived around . They were escorted by USS Robinson, USS Rudderow, USS PCE(R)-849, USS PC-1120 and USS SC-698.
Fighting on Tarakan continued until 19 June. The island was declared secure on 21 June 1945. [Up to this time supplies kept coming in but it goes to far to list these shipping movements here.]
- Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for June 1944 + War diaries for June 1944 from USS Witter, USS Bowers, USS Foreman and MTB Ron 9