U.S.S. Allen M. Sumner
Lingayen Gulf Action Report
Cover Page of the Report
|DD692/A9||U.S.S. ALLEN M. SUMNER (DD692).|
|Serial 05||c/o Fleet Post Office.|
|San Francisco, Calif.|
|16 January 1945.|
|C O N F I D E N T I A L|
|From:||The Commanding Officer.|
|To:||The Commander in Chief, U.S. Fleet.|
|Via:||(1) Commander Destroyer Squadron 60.|
|(2) Commander Task Unit 77.2.1 (ComBatDiv 3).|
|(3) Commander Task Group 77.2 (ComBatRon 1).|
|(4) Commander Task Force 78 (Com 7th AmphibFor).|
|(5) Commander Task Force 77 (Com Luzon Attack Force).|
|(6) Commander Seventh Fleet.|
|(7) Commander in Chief, U. S. Pacific Fleet.|
|Subject:||Action Report U.S.S. ALLEN M. SUMNER (DD692) for|
|Luzon Attack Force Operation, 2-13 January 1945.|
|Reference:||(a) Commander Task Group 77.2 Operation plan 3-44.|
|Enclosures:||(A) DRT tracks during actions.|
|(B) Extracts from TBS log.|
|(C) Copy of Battle Damage Report.|
|(D) Copy of report on personnel casualties.|
General narrative of the action:
Prior to midnight, 2 January 1945, this vessel got underway in company with DesRon Sixty
to sortie with part of Task Group 77.2 from San Pedro Bay, Leyte, P.I. The portion of the
task group, consisting of USS NEW MEXICO (CTU 77.2.1, Rear Adm. Weyler), MISSISSIPPI,
PORTLAND, MINNEAPOLIS, LOUISVILLE, HALL, SANDS, BRYANT, KIMBERLEY, DICKERSON, PAUL
HAMILTON, CLEMSON, NEWCOMB, W. D. PORTER, DesRon Sixty, two DEs, WINOOSKI,
SALAMONIE, SUANICO, HMAS AUSTRALIA, SHROPSHIRE, ARUNTA, and WARRAMUNGA formed in Leyte
Gulf and made a feint course toward the eastern end of Surigao Strait good, until dawn. On
the 3rd Task Group 77.4 consisting of escort carriers joined in Southern Leyte Gulf. The
two groups exchanged several escorts and proceeded via Mindanao Sea, Sulu Sea, and South
China Sea to Lingayen Gulf, Luzon, P.I. Enemy air attack occurred only once on the 3rd,
while on the 4th, they approached at intervals throughout the day. On the evening of the
4th the USS OMMANEY BAY was hit by a suicide enemy plane and had to be abandoned and sunk.
Shortly after noon on the 5th the search planes ahead of the groups reported two enemy
destroyers. Air strikes were launched and the destroyers reported disposed of. Later in
the afternoon the LOUISVILLE was hit by bombs and later a suicide plane. HMAS ARUNTA was
also hit by a suicide plane, as was the HMAS AUSTRALIA, the destroyer escort STAFFORD, and
the CVE MANILA BAY.
(a) Embodied in paragraph 1.
|and Task Group 77.4 enroute, and of bombarding Blue Beach
prior to the assault landing. SUMNERS doctrine was standard destroyer doctrine; her
plans in accordance with the operation plans as modified by events; and her assumptions as
stated in the operation plans as supplemented by subsequent dispatch intelligence reports.
On the eve of the action the tactical aspects of the situation were as follows:
(1) Hostile surface forces of major composition were unlikely and would probably be intercepted and destroyed or forced to retreat by Third Fleet operating to NE of Luzon. Encounter with small minor units up to DD size are possible but improbable in view of coverage and previous operations in the gulf. Even in the event of a heavy ship attack our forces would heavily outweigh the enemy force.
(2) Hostile minor war vessels are likely to be encountered.
(3) Enemy aircraft will be encountered in spite of heavy CAP, and suicide tactics will be
(4) Shore batteries may be encountered even after the preliminary bombardments and apparently abandoned beaches. Even if these should open up in numbers their fire would be silenced that day by the large fire support units of which SUMNER is a part.
(5) Mines and torpedoes implanted or maneuvered cunningly into position may be encountered in spite of negative sweep results. Limpot mines are possible.
(6) Camouflage in all forms may be expected on the beaches.
(7) Friendly natives may appear within the gulf in numbers in small boats.
(8) Screening of heavy ships and called fire would be our primary duties.
(c) Incorporated in action reports of seniors.
(d) Enemy forces encountered by SUMNER consisted entirely of planes and shore gun positions. One Judy or Zeke attacked from out of the sun, at a position angle of 15°, strafing as he dove and crashed on torpedo tube mount #2. Numerous planes including one Val and one Zeke were also fired upon.
(e) Incorporated in action reports of seniors.
Narrative of action (chronological) from first to last contact with the enemy: First contact with the enemy was made by SUMNER at 1912 on 3 January 1945 (S-6 day) while south of Bohol Island in the Mindanao Sea. The plane, a Zeke was fired upon with the main battery bearing 070° T., at 6,000 yards. The target turned away and withdrew from range. 1914 Ceased firing. 2122 Passed Siquijor Island abeam to starboard, distant 12 miles
4 January 1945
0043 Unidentified aircraft bearing 228° T., distant 12 miles. 0210 Changed course to 330° T., having rounded the southern tip of Negros Island. 0247 Unidentified aircraft bearing 240° T., distant 18 miles. 0325 Unidentified aircraft bearing 040° T., distant 12 miles and unidentified aircraft bearing 098° T., distant 7 miles. 0336 Anti-aircraft fire from van and rear groups. 0620 Carriers launched aircraft. 0648 Unidentified aircraft bearing 060° T., distant 11 miles. 0800 Assumed radar guard. 0834 Off Nasos Point, Negros Island, changed course to 000° T. 1115 CAP intercepted enemy planes bearing 330° T., distant 30 miles. 1227 Unidentified aircraft bearing 030° T., distant 13 miles. 1434 Possible periscope sighted inside formation. Proved to be fishing stake. 1705 Carriers recovered planes. 1717 Enemy planes over van and rear groups; heavy anti-aircraft firing. 1718 Sighted large explosion astern; later found to be USS OMMANEY BAY hit by suicide plane. OMMANEY BAY had to be abandoned and sunk by own torpedoes. 1754 Heavy anti-aircraft fire on enemy planes over van group. 1905 Formed cruising disposition 4RN; fleet axis 330° T. 2000 Entered Mindoro Strait.
5 January 1945
0235 Unidentified aircraft bearing 240° T., distant 9 miles. 0250 changed base course to 340° T. 0320 Sighted flares to southwest about 8 miles. Apparently dropped by planes. 0329 Anti-aircraft firing from rear group; enemy planes over both groups. 0353 Unidentified aircraft bearing 050° T., distant 5 miles. 0610 Unidentified aircraft bearing 357° T., distant 20 miles. 0646 Carriers launched planes. 0705 Changed fleet axis to 000° T. 0713 Passed Cape Calavite, Mindoro, abeam to starboard at 24 miles. 0739 CTG 77.4 assumed tactical command of van group. 0820 Enemy planes reported in vicinity. 1039 Passed Lubang Island abeam to starboard about 30 miles. 1047 CAP reported splashing one Judy. 1051 Unidentified aircraft bearing 250° T., distant 5 miles. 1308 WALKE came alongside to deliver OM mail. 1450 CAP reported two enemy destroyers about 60 miles north of formation. 1545 Carriers launched strike against enemy destroyers reported ahead. 1602 Second strike launched. 1610 Enemy plane reported over the formation. 1652 Anti-aircraft firing from rear group. 1705 Anti-aircraft firing from rear group. 1710 Anti-aircraft firing from van group. 1714 Two low flying enemy planes came into van group between screen stations 4 and 6. One crashed on HMAS ARUNTA in station 6, the other though hit and burning crashed into the LOUISVILLE and exploded. ARUNTA lost steering control and dropped out of formation. INGRAHAM ordered to stand by ARUNTA; screen equalized. 1735 IZARD in station 4 reported that one of enemy destroyers was now 15 miles bearing 029° T. 1740 Sighted one Val bearing 137° T., distant 12 miles. 1747 Enemy planes attacking rear group, heavy anti-aircraft fire; one Val reported splashed. 1750 HMAS AUSTRALIA hit by suicide plane. STAFFORD (DE) hit by suicide plane (in rear group). 1751 Sighted 4 enemy planes bearing 250° T. 1753 CVE MANILA BAY in rear group reported hit by suicide plane. 1838 BARTON, WALKE, and MOALE escorted HMAS STROPSHIRE to rear group and took stations in rear group screen. 1809 Sighted plane as it burst into flames and crashed bearing 040° T., distant 12 miles. 1918 Anti-aircraft firing at 020° T., distant 12 miles. 1930 Heavy anti-aircraft fire from van group. 2000 SUMNER, LAFFEY, and OBRIEN, proceeded to stations in rear group 13 ship circular screen.
6 January 1945
0130 BARTON reported casualty to main battery control. 0242 Unidentified aircraft bearing 135° T., distant 20 miles. 0250 Enemy planes bearing 156° T., reported intercepted by friendlies. 0253 Enemy plane 155° T., distant 7 miles, closing. 0255 Anti-aircraft firing 165° T., distant 5 miles. 0257 Unidentified aircraft bearing 165° T., distant 7 miles, opening. 0310 Unidentified aircraft bearing 270° T., distant 8 miles. 0315 Enemy plane dropped float lights at 120° T., distant 6 miles. 0448 Unidentified aircraft bearing 160° T., distant 12 miles, closing. 0500 Task Group 77.4 and Task Group 77.2 proceeding toward gulf. Task Group 77.2 then divided into Task Unit 77.2.1 and Task Unit 77.2.2; ARUNTA and WARRAMUNGA shifting from Task Unit 77.2.1 to Task Unit 72.2.2. The Lingayen Bombardment and Fire Support Unit (Task Unit 72.2.2) was to bombard Santiago Island and the San Fabian unit (Task Unit 77.2.1) to bombard Poro Point. SUMNER in screen of Task Unit 77.2.1 on circle 7. 0554 Anti-aircraft firing observed bearing 170° T. 0738 North of Cape Bolinao entering Lingayen Gulf with Task Unit 77.2.1. Unidentified plane over formation. 0843 Screen closed to circle 5. 0915 CTG 77.2 ordered CDD 120 in SUMNER to replace CDS60 in BARTON as CTU 77.2.9, screen and fire support for the minesweeping and hydrographic unit. 0930 Enemy shipping reported in San Fernando harbor. 1005 Heavy ships of Task Unit 77.2.1 launched spotting planes. 1024 CDD120 in SUMNER with WALKE left Task Unit 77.2.1 to take station astern of Task Group 77.6 off eastern beach. 1030 Contacted CTG 77.6 for information on swept channel and proceeded to assigned area. 1052 Task Unit 77.2.1 heavy ships firing on assigned targets. 1104 Received report that minesweepers of Task Group 77.6 were being fired upon. 1120 Enemy plane attacked bombardment group and was driven off by heavy anti-aircraft. 1135 Unidentified aircraft sighted bearing 135° T., flying low. 1138 Entered swept channel. 1148 Shell from shore batteries passed over HMAS AUSTRALIA and landed 1500 yards on our port bow. 1153 Sighted explosion at 200° T., distant 15 miles. 1158 Enemy plane coming in from starboard quarter (250° T.). Commenced firing on plane with main battery and radical maneuvers at 25 knots. 1200 Ceased firing on plane bearing now about 080° T., SUMNER headed 270° T. Second enemy plane threatening attack bearing about 075° T. Commenced swinging right slowly. 1201 Third enemy plane approached on port bow (255° T.) strafed and crashed on after torpedo mount after diving through the rigging and hitting No. 2 stack. Bomb dropped on torpedo mount 2, exploding while plane struck main deck starboard side and crashed into water close aboard to starboard. Right full rudder was effected at first sighting of this plane so that the ship was in hard right turn at 25 knots as plane struck. Damage and casualties as shown in enclosures. WALKE was hit by suicide plane on port side of the bridge at same time. 1220 Sighted three unidentified aircraft low on the water bearing 270° T., distant 10 miles. INGRAHAM ordered to relieve SUMNER. 1233 Sighted 2 men in water off the port bow. INGRAHAM arriving as SUMNERS relief picked up men while SUMNER joined Task Unit 77.2.1 taking station No. 3 on circle 3.5. WALKE relieved by OBRIEN. WALKE joined screen of Task Unit 77.2.1 also. 1247 Heavy ships still steaming in column off Poro Point conducting shore bombardment. CDS60 in BARTON relieved INGRAHAM as CTU 77.2.9 in support of minesweepers. CDD120 in SUMNER became screen commander of Task Unit 77.2.1, BARTON remaining with minesweepers until afternoon of S-1 day (8 January 1945). WALKE rejoined Task Unit 77.2.1. Screen now consists of DesRon 60 less BARTON and OBRIEN plus 5 APDs. 1403 Jettisoned adrift torpedo warheads that had been sheared by hit. 1429 OBRIEN hit by suicide plane on port side aft of Mount No. 3. OBRIEN directed to cease minesweeper support duties and rejoin Task Unit 77.2.1 screen. 1435 Three enemy planes reported bearing 075° T., distant 10 miles. 1436 Formation under attack by 3 Judys. Heavy anti-aircraft fire from formation. 1515 Task Unit 77.2.1 with heavy ships still in column, having completed the bombardment of Poro Point, took position astern of Task Unit 72.2.2. Screens of two units combined to form circular anti-aircraft screen for heavies as the units proceeded south into Lingayen Gulf for further shore bombardment by heavies. 1620 Sighted two Jap planes bearing 215° T. 1622 Formation putting up heavy anti-aircraft fire at plane coming in low from the land. SUMNER commenced firing. One Jap plane observed to crash in water. 1623 Ceased firing. 1628 Three unidentified planes reporting coming in from out of the sun (bearing 240° T.). 1630 Minesweepers reported results of sweeps so far were negative. 1720 Suicide plane crashed on NEW MEXICO. 1725 A Val was reported bearing 105° T., distant 10 miles. 1728 Formation under attack by several planes; anti-aircraft fire heavy; SUMNER commenced firing. 1729 Firing on plane on port quarter. 1730 Ceased firing. 1731 HMAS AUSTRALIA reported being hit by suicide plane putting all heavy anti-aircraft guns out of commission. 1733 Three unidentified aircraft bearing 060° T., distant 6 miles. 1732 Unidentified aircraft coming in low from 160° T. 1740 Unidentified aircraft fire from formation on planes approaching from bearing 280° T., SUMNER commenced firing. 1753 Ceased firing. Planes identified as Vals; anti-aircraft fire drove them off. 1755 One Judy sighted at bearing 270° T., distant 11 miles. 1757 Two planes sighted at bearing 190° T., distant 10 miles. 1800 Formation fired on low flying planes approaching; SUMNER commenced firing. 1805 Ceased firing; attacks driven off, one plane being shot down by combined fire. 1830 Jap plane made steep dive on HMAS STROPSHIRE who shot it down. Two parachutes observed emanating from falling plane, one supporting what appeared to be possibly a mine. 1852 Bombardment completed. Heavy ships commenced recovery of spotting planes. Destroyers screened individual heavy ships as planes recovered. 1900 Task Unit 77.2.1 and Task Unit 77.2.2 joined and formed disposition 5RO-1, CDS56 in LEUTZE is commander screen. CDD120 ordered to assign stations 1-12. 1920 Went alongside WEST VIRGINIA to transfer wounded. Darkness enveloped and made the maneuver difficult and slow. Eleven men transferred. 1940 Task Group commenced withdrawal from gulf. 1959 Unidentified aircraft bearing 070° T., distant 6 miles, closing. 2105 Left alongside WEST VIRGINIA and took station No. 1 in screen 4RO-1. 2210 On station No. 1, CDD120 controlling forward semi-circle of screen, CDS56 in LEUTZE is commander screen.
7 January 1945
0119 Unidentified aircraft bearing 190° T., distant 35 miles. 0133 Unidentified aircraft bearing 165° T., distant 20 miles. 0645 Approaching Lingayen Gulf. 0725 Task Group 77.2 split into Lingayen and San Fabian units, the latter forming column on course 160° T., with screen ships to seaward and at the ends of the column. 0835 Entering Lingayen Gulf to conduct shore bombardment. 0915 Conducted burial at sea services for 13 men killed in action on 6 January 1945, in latitude 16-24.5 N, longitude 120-11.8 E. 1012 Heavy ships launched spotting planes. 1105 Heavy ships on individual stations commenced shore bombardment; destroyers screening heavy ships to seaward. 1415 All ships proceeding to assigned stations for fire support of UDTs, DDs screening heavy ships enroute. 1440 All ships on stations off Lingayen and San Fabian beaches. 1528 On station about 3,000 yards off the beach. Commenced firing, again bombarding vicinity of blue beach. 1530 Swimmers of UDTs in water approaching beaches. 1645 Swimmers reported recovered and boats on way back to parent ships. UDT operation apparently successful; very little fire observed from beaches, bombardment ships firing on targets of opportunity. 1740 Ceased bombardment firing and commenced withdrawal to take station in screen of Task Unit 77.2.1. CTU 77.2.1 directed LOWRY substitute for SUMNER in San Fabian night harassing unit. 1810 Took station in screen for disposition 5RO-1 as for previous night. MOALE and LOWRY detached to carry our night harassing mission. 1842 Jap Val sighted bearing 210° T., distant 10 miles, closing. 1845 Unidentified aircraft bearing 140° T., distant 8 miles. 1902 Anti-aircraft firing on starboard quarter on what proved to be friendly plane. 1905 Disposition 5RO-1 completed being formed, SUMNER on station No. 1 of 22 ship circular screen, axis 000° T. 1910 LOWRY reported a Jap Jake dropped a bomb about 500 yards from her and retired to southward. 1915 Formation under attack by enemy planes. Commenced firing with main battery and 40MMs on plane on starboard bow. Plane dropped bomb that landed about 1000 yards on starboard bow. 1917 Ceased firing. Air attacks continued until about 2000. Heavy AA fire from formation at intervals. 2125 Took station on circle 8. Task Group made sortie from gulf and cruised to northwest during the night.
8 January 1945
0457 MOALE and LOWRY rejoined formation as task group stood into gulf and took stations in screen. 0500 Unidentified aircraft bearing 235° T., distant 3 miles. 0610 Lingayen and San Fabian units separated. San Fabian Unit SSs and APDs formed screen on circle 3 around heavy ships proceeding into Lingayen Gulf for further shore bombardment. 0639 Unidentified aircraft bearing 307° T., distant 10 miles. 0644 Observed anti-aircraft firing off port bow. 0718 Another enemy suicider attempted to crash the HMAS AUSTRALIA but was shot down and crashed into the water near the center of the formation. SUMNER fired on this plane, also. 0721 Ceased firing; friendly planes reported overhead. 0730 sighted pilot in water bearing 346° T.; proceeded to pick him up. 0733 Sighted enemy plane dead astern; commenced firing. 0734 Plane made steep dive toward AUSTRALIA from the port quarter through heavy anti-aircraft fire. Plane leveled off into a shallow glide at about 200 feet, hit the water skipped, and crashed into AUSTRALIAs port side, exploding. This makes AUSTRALIAs third suicide hit. 0735 stopped to pick up pilot in water. Pilot proved to be Navy FM pilot from CVE HOGATT BAY shot down when confused with enemy planes attacking. 0805 Heavy ships in column on course 160° T. DDs 1500 yards to seaward of heavies for anti-aircraft support with APDs forming A/S screen at ends of column. 0818 Heavy ships launched spotting planes. 0819 Heavy ships commenced shore bombardment of east coast of Lingayen Gulf, DDs and APDs screening to seaward. 1050 Left screening station to go alongside NEW MEXICO to refuel. CDD120 delegated commander screen to OBRIEN during absence of SUMNER. 1135 Alongside NEW MEXICO on center of gulf. Refueled and transferred wounded pilot; received 75,000 gallons. 1344 Rejoined formation and took station in screen. CDD120 resumed commander screen duties. 1524 LOWRY left screen to give fire support to minesweepers. 1545 Bombardment completed San Fabian Unit formed disposition 7VW on signal of CTU and proceeded to vicinity of Poro Point. APDs were ordered to join Lingayen Unit. 1635 Changed formation to 4CW, screening column of heavy ships; SUMNER in station No. 1. 1740 CDS60 in BARTON rejoined screen and relieved CDD120 as commander screen. 1745 Heavy ships in column bombarded San Fernando and Poro Point; screen 1000 yards to westward. 1841 Bombardment completed, formed disposition 4CW and proceeded to rejoin Task Unit 77.2.2 in southern part of the gulf. 1848 Heavy ships recovered spotting planes. 1850 LOWRY rejoined formation and took station in screen. 1856 Sighted anti-aircraft firing in direction of Lingayen Unit. 1930 Two units joined and reversed course to stand out of gulf for the night. 1932 LAFFEY and INGRAHAM left formation on assigned night harassing mission in place of damaged OBRIEN. 2100 Task Unit 77.2.1 and Task Unit 72.2.2 formed disposition 5RO-1. LAFFEY and INGRAHAM rejoined formation having completed assigned mission. Task Group 77.2 cruised just outside gulf during the night.
9 January 1945
0410 Task Group 77.2 preceding assault forces into Lingayen Gulf. Task Unit 77.2.1 and 72.2.2 separated and proceeded to assigned bombardment stations. 0500 Individual ships proceeding to assigned bombardment stations. 0540 Sighted anti-aircraft firing on port quarter about 12 miles. 0545 Heavy anti-aircraft fire from ships in gulf. 0630 Ships on stations for initial shore bombardment; assault forces moving into gulf from seaward. 0700 Heavy ships commenced bombardment. 0710 CTG 77.2 ordered CTU 77.2.1 to report to CTF 78, Vice Adm. BARBEY, Commander San Fabian Attack Force for duty. San Fabian Bombardment and Fire Support Group became a part of San Fabian Attack Force. 0715 Observed heavy anti-aircraft fire bearing 030° T. 0719 Landing craft began assembly and commenced moving in toward the beaches. 0747 Enemy plane over Lingayen Beach transport area. One Jap plane was shot down by anti-aircraft fire. 0750 Suicide plane dove and crashed into COLUMBIA in Lingayen Beach area. 0845 Bombardment ships moved into close in stations. Assault craft headed for beaches. 0900 Commenced bombardment of left half of Blue 2 Beach off San Fabian town. 0925 ceased firing. 0930 H hour - first assault waves hit the beaches. Heavy ships continued bombardment of targets inland. 0942 No opposition reported on Blue Beach. Boats continued to pour troops ashore with only token opposition at White Beach; remainder of beaches, no opposition. 1002 JENKINS reported being hit by shore battery which she then silenced. 1303 Two Jap suicide planes came in from the south without being detected. One crashed into the MISSISSIPPI. The other strafed a Higgins boat, missed an AK with a bomb and crashed into the forward stack of the AUSTRALIA. This made #4 in 5 days to hit the AUSTRALIA. 1304 Commenced firing on plane that later struck AUSTRALIA. 1306 Ceased firing. 1330 Unidentified aircraft bearing 185° T., distant 15 miles, very high. 1400 Unidentified aircraft bearing 190° T., distant 10 miles. 1715 Received orders with WALKE and OBRIEN from CTG 77.2 to report to CTF 79. CTF 79 in turn ordered ships to remain in present areas until further orders upon the ships reporting as directed. 1825 Sighted on Val bearing 230° T., distant 20 miles. 1834 CTF 79 ordered smoke laid by ships under his command. Commenced making smoke in vicinity of MISSISSIPPI. 1856 Heavy anti-aircraft fire on enemy planes over Lingayen beach transport area, continuing intermittently until about 1925. 1903 Commenced firing on Jap plane. 1906 Ceased firing. 2005 More anti-aircraft firing. Observed one plane go down in flames. 2121 Maneuvered slowly in transport area throughout the night while starshells were fired intermittently throughout the night in the vicinity of the beaches.
10 January 1945
0445 Jap torpedo boats reported in transport area. An LST and an AP were reported hit by torpedoes, and another ship hit by a charge thrown from a small boat. 0653 Enemy air attacks; heavy anti-aircraft fire and on enemy plane shot down. 0712 One Val sighted high overhead going into a dive. Commenced firing. Heavy anti-aircraft fire. Plane hit by heavy fire, tried to dive on a destroyer but missed and crashed into the water. 0714 Ceased firing. 1010 Two man midget submarine reported bearing 210° T., distant 5 miles. 1017 CONY reported having picked up two Japs in the water swimming with explosives strapped to their backs. Additional reports were received of enemy swimmers and a search was conducted of the area to westward by several destroyers. 1030 Ordered to fuel from MT. OLYMPUS. 1100 Attempted to go alongside MT. OLYMPUS but found process too treacherous due to heavy swell causing excessive roll. 1107 Left from alongside and proceeded on patrol in gulf as before. Having fueled from NEW MEXICO the previous day, sufficient fuel remained on hand to make return trip to Leyte without again refueling. 1400 WALKE and OBRIEN fueled to 60% from AGCs in transport area. 1600 Received orders to report to CDD120 doe escort of convoy departing at 1800. 1707 Observed anti-aircraft firing off port bow. 1735 Arrived at rendezvous point and circled awaiting convoy and escorts. 1800 Proceeded with OBRIEN, WALKE, LANG, PEIFFER (DE), SOUTHARD (DMS), BLESSMAN (APD), and HMAS GASCOYNE to form circular screen around column of 5 APAs leaving Lingayen transport area to join others departing San Fabian area. 1850 Screen formed; transports now 8 in number. 1902 Enemy planes overhead; observed anti-aircraft firing bearing 305° T., distant 6 miles. 1903 Commenced firing on Jap Val sighted to northeast. 1905 Ceased firing; observed plane to go into dive out of control and crash into water to northwest. 1915 Heavy anti-aircraft firing over ships within southern part of gulf and at mouth of gulf. 1919 DUPAGE of Task Group 79.14 observed hit by suicide plane to northwest. 1930 Preparing to join 3 columns of ships which comprise the remainder of the convoy. Task Unit 79.14.2 screen formed circle around all four columns. Convoy speed 12 knots. 1935 OBRIEN sent astern to search for survivors of DUPAGE. 1944 Observed large explosion on horizon bearing 101° T. 2040 Passed out of Lingayen Gulf convoy of 17 APAs, 2 AKAs, 2 LSDs and 1 KA formed in 4 columns with screen of 8 ships formed on circle 3 equally spaced; SUMNER on station #1. 2125 Changed screen to concentrate more ships forward for anti-submarine purposes. 2330 Passed Lingayen bound convoy.
11 January 1945
0128 LANG, SOUTHARD and 3 APAs left convoy to return to Lingayen Gulf. 0130 Reformed screen to move stations #4 and #5 out to 4,000 yards circle. OBRIEN was designated FD ship. Passed another Lingayen bound convoy. 0730 CAP overhead taken over by OBRIEN. 0953 Convoy slowed to 5 knots to permit exchange of passengers between large ships. 1053 WALKE left station to investigate sound contact on starboard beam of convoy. 1100 WALKE reported good contact and dropped pattern of depth charges. 1105 WALKE made reattack dropping a second pattern. 1135 WALKE reported no further contact and proceeded to rejoin formation. 1635 Rounded Lubang Island, changed course to 147° T. 1826 CAP reported Jap plane in area. Enemy plane did not make appearance in vicinity of convoy. 2230 Contacted convoy bearing 125° T., distant 10 miles. 2319 Passed friendly convoy of LSTs and LCIs abeam to port off central Mindoro.
12 January 1945
1050 Passed Ambulong Island abeam to port 7 miles. 0300 FOOTE and NICKEL (DE) joined formation. Screen was reoriented to accommodate two more ships. 0540 NICKEL and FOOTE detached from screen to join disabled submarine off San Jose, Mindoro. Screen reoriented to former status. 1439 OBRIEN procured CAP of 8 planes which were unable to find their designated convoy. 1817 Unidentified aircraft reported bearing 192° T., distant 45 miles. 1825 Unidentified aircraft bearing 205° T., distant 12 miles, closing. 1835 Unidentified aircraft commenced opening without attacking convoy. 2000 Changed course to 090° T., having passed southern tip of Negros Island. 2235 Passed Silino Island abeam to starboard 8 miles.
13 January 1945
0125 Surface contact astern of convoy; identified as FOOTE and NICKEL rejoining. 0145 FOOTE and NICKEL rejoined and took stations as previous night. 1344 HMAS GASCOYNE detached to proceed to destination. 1209 Convoy commenced to disperse off Dulag, Leyte, P.I. Convoy ships and escorts proceeding to destinations.
Performance of Own Ordnance Material and
(c) Gunnery effectiveness is considered satisfactory, except against suicide planes.
Evasive tactics and radical maneuvering employed by the enemy presents a very difficult
anti-aircraft fire control problem. The shore bombardment problem was conducted from the
director selecting targets visually by means of the optics. Ranges and bearings to the
assigned target area were sent up from Combat. Fire was evidently very effective judging
from the little or no opposition encountered by the troops upon landing.
2. The only enemy ordnance equipment observed by this ship was that of the suicide plane. His strafing was accurate if he attempted to hit the main deck amidships on the port side, however it is logical to assume that he was attempting to strafe the bridge. In this case his fire was ineffective. Only two men were hit by the strafing. One 40MM director sight and one 36" searchlight were hit by the strafing. One of the planes wing guns which remained aboard after the explosion was examined and found to be of about 17MM caliber and constructed very similar to the 20MM Oerlikon. It is believed to be designed almost entirely from the Oerlikon gun, slight modifications being made necessarily to accommodate the design for aircraft fixed position use. The bomb or shell carried by the plane was not actually seen but is believed to have been about 500 pounds or a 14-16" shell. Enclosure (c) speaks for its effectiveness.
Own Battle Damage:
(a) Sound powered telephone
circuits and interior communications were satisfactory.
Personnel Performance and
|N. J. Sampson|
A sincere Thank You to Ron Babuka who supplied us with this report