Sept 13, 2014
While I am tempted to continue the chronology of the last several posts and talk about Occupation duty, I have chosen instead to look at Sept. 1944.
After spending the entire month of August, 1944 anchored in the lagoon at Eniwetok (Marshall Islands) – during which time the ship was reprovisioned, their Admiral (Crudiv 10) was changed, and their Task Force was changed from TF 58 to TF 38 – the ship headed south for the raid on enemy stronghold Palau. By Sept. 8, the ship headed north and would stay involved off the shores of the Philippines for months.
The following are excerpts from Frank Studenski’s diary:
September 12, 1944: We hit targets on Negros Island today. Tomorrow troops will land on Cebu Island. Radar picked up some bogies and kept us at general quarters.
September 13, 1944: Today we headed south to assist in the landing on Cebu Island 300 miles south of the Philippines.
September 14, 1944: Planes continued to hit Cebu Island. Troops also landed on Palau Island today. Carrier planes are supporting the troops.
September 15, 1944: Today we refueled from tankers and received some mail from home. Army troops also landed on the Island of Morotai and the Marines landed on Peleliu Island.
September 16, 1944: Today we hit targets on Zomboanga Island. This is the rainy season and it rains everyday, as we pass through the rain squalls.
September 17, 1944: This morning Army troops landed on Anguar Island. The weather is wet and rainy.
September 18, 1944: This morning while at general quarters, bogies were in the area. Task Force 38.2, which is on the horizon, opened fire. None of the planes came in close enough for us to fire at.
September 19, 1944: Today bogies are in the area, the planes stayed out of range which kept us at general quarters all day.
September 20, 1944: Today we are heading for Luzon and tomorrow morning planes will hit Manila.
September 21, 1944: This morning at 0800 hours planes took off to bomb Manila Harbor. The task force is about 80 miles from Luzon. The Japs did not discover our ship so far. Our Task Force 38.1 was assigned to Manila Bay, while the other two groups were assigned to Clark and Nickels fields. We had two air attacks this morning, but they did not do any damage to the ships. The rest of the day was pretty quiet, except for bogies all around us. We were at general quarters all day. A lot of ships were hit and sinking. The rest of the day and night were quiet with no bogies around.