Journal of Lt. Charles Eli Price, M.D., U.S.S. Montauk
(As transcribed by grandson, Matthew M. Price, on 2/6/2006. NOTE: My comments are in italics. Generally, I am stating when I have guessed what his “doctor’s writing” actually said. Much is not punctuated either. There are just statements. So, I used semi-colons for new thoughts, and hyphens for continued thoughts. Where possible, though, I have also added background info that I knew.)
Commissioning Oct. 6 (1944) – 1430 Todd Erie Basin, Brooklyn
Loading 35st Brooklyn
Trials Long Island Sound; Oyster Bay
To Norfolk 14 Oct. (1944)
Shakedown Chesapeake; Solomans Amphibious; Cove Pt.; Cape Charles City; Annapolis; Gunnery Practice; Norfolk & Re.; 31 Oct to 7 Nov (1944)
7 Nov—to sea with convoy; Roosevelt elected for 4th term. Seasick for 1st.
9 Nov—Crooked Passage; Flying Fish (He drew a rendition of the fish, as well. Not great, but you get the general shape.) San Salvatore L.H.—Columbus landed
10 Nov—Windward Passage; the mountains of Cuba off starboard
Sun. 12 Nov—Colon; entrance to Panama Canal; “Dirtiest” City in the World; had duty; stories from fellows.
Mon. 13 Nov—Thru the Canal. Army outposts along Electric “Mules” Way; Capt. on thru into Pacific; “Our next port of Call—San Diego Calif.”
Tuesday 14 Nov 44—Water, water, water; Set T. back 1 hr. at 1800.
16 Nov. Thurs—Set clocks back 1 hr; Now on Mountain Time.
17 Nov. Fri—Off Capulca (Mexico Atlantic City); San Paige Water Spout (He was living in the Atlantic City, New Jersey area prior to service. He also drew a rendition of the water spout. I wouldn’t have known what it was though, because it’s pretty bad.)
18 Nov Sat—Clocks back 1 hr. Now on Pacific Time. ‘Versary. (I believe he means it’s his wedding anniversary.)
20 Nov—San Diego. U.S. Grant Hotel; Called Re. (That’s short for his wife’s name, Marie.)
23 Nov—Thanksgiving; Golden Gate; San Francisco; Called Re. Mark Hopkins Hotel; “Top of the (can’t read this word…possibly, Made or Mask)”; Fisherman’s Wharf; Palace Hotel—Happy Valley Bar (The menu pictures I took are a souvenir from this visit. They are dated with the same date, and the address is on Fisherman’s Wharf.)
25 Nov—Business & Shopping in ‘Frisco—no luck; Called Re; Off for Pearl Harbor; “Don’t go away ‘Frisco, We’ll be back.”; Treasure Island; Alcatraz; Golden Gate Bridge; San Francisco—Oakland Bridge; Pilot on and off by schooner & skiff.
1 Dec—Into Pearl Harbor; aground—damaged port screw; Saw Bob (This is his brother-in-law, who is also in the service. I believe it was the Army, though.) Honolulu Disappointment, Curfew 2200—Close 1800
2 Dec—Unloaded DUKU’s; Broke formal mooring line—adrift—ok.
3 Dec—Off for San Francisco.
8 Dec.—1 day away from phoning Re and getting letters; Sea finally settled down
9 Dec—S.F. California
13 Dec—Underway at 1600 for -----; Fully loaded; transporting; “So long” to Re last night 24 Navy Officers via phone.
14 Dec—On way to Guadalcanal
18 Dec—‘Versary 8 years; Off Hawaii
Dec. 22—Crossed Int. Date Line 2330; Lost (shipped) Sat the 23.
Sun. 24 (Dec. 1944)—Shellbacks activities begin; cleaning scullery
Mon. 25 (Dec. 1944)—X-mas out here. Christmas Tree & wonderful presents from Re (this was what he called his wife, Marie). Tears over card & letter. fo'castle .) watch and other watches. "Tecumseh" haircut by Shellbacks.
Tues 26 (Dec. 1944)—X-mas at home. 0800 Shellback initiation before Court Royal. Crossed equator at 0650. Trials at end of court. Exec remains consistent. The revolt that failed. Passed between Nauru & Acean Jap held Islands. Too far away to see. Rain all day—slow continuous drizzle.
28—Anchored at Guadalcanal; (Another guess word...could be Lunga, Lunza, Lringa, Lrinza, etc.) PT. ® Terry visited Island; Peaceful beaches; mute testimony of the little (Another guess word...could be grovey ard’s.); The vastness of the jungle & visibility to see thru it. Wonderful mail from home.
29—Moved over to (Another guess word...could beTulagi) to (Another guess word...could be direct) boats; Rain and to (Another guess word...could be bnv, bm, bow, etc.)
31 Dec—Under way to Pearl
Jan 4 (1945)—Crossed Date Line
2nd Jan 4th (1945)—Appendectomy—Arnold; Ac. Supp.
Jan 7th—At pearl; Picnic’s—beer (In the letters he wrote home, he indicates he is also the morale officer, and that he was responsible for organizing this event for “the boys.”); Mauna; Waikiki; Diamond Head
Jan 12th—Pearl to Honolulu Dock #25
Jan 13th—Under Weight to Eniwetok and ® Guam (Duva)
Jan 17th—Skipped by crossing date line
Sat. Jan 20th—Arrive Eneivetok. Amazing little or “big” atoll. (There’s a drawing of six islands in a ring around a lagoon.)
Sun 21—Officer’s Club & tour of Eniewetok; Head for “guys” and “gals” (no “gals”) (In a letter, he indicates that they had two bathrooms at this place, one for each sex. But, there were no women, and he found it funny to have had a bathroom for them.)
Mon 22—Left in 11 ship—4 escort 10K. convoy for Guam; Montauk is Commodore.
Fri 26 Jan—Arrived Guam
Sat 27 Jan—Met Chaplain Gee; Tour of Island; Agana’—the city near base utter ruins; Bloody Ridge; Mobile Hospital wiped out; red D on buildings meant Japs about to occupy; attractive Chamoran natives (Spanish in descent); Terrific wealth of material supplies at this one near base; caves and tanks; story of why no enlisted men allowed ashore; The Tank that sat around “bloody ridge”; The National Cemeteries where some 5,000 of our boys are buried; Gen. McNair’s son & Governor (Guess…Saltons) Tall’s (Mass.) son included; Still lots of Japs around—approx. 4,000 have not been accounted for; lots of Jap ammunition and materials about.
Wed. Jan 31—Underway for P.H. via Enieǘetok; 3 escorts 6 ship convoy. 9K; 70 Jap P.O.W.—6 officers.
Sat 3 Feb—Submarine contact. F knots on surface—submerged. Reported to escorts of another convoy. Later report, “Having good hunting.”
Sun 4 Feb—Report wireless from other escort that they believe they sunk the sub. Good hunting—boys!
Sun night 4 Feb—Another “sub” contact; DE could not find it.
Monday 5 Feb—Left convoy without going in to Eniwetok; up to 17 ½ K. and on alone to P.H.; 2 circumcisions.
Wed 7 Feb—passed 180º. Tomorrow is still Wed 7 Feb.
Thurs 8 Feb—passed 25,000 mile mark; 25,000 m. in just over 4 mos. Oct. 6 to Feb. 8
Sunday 11 Feb—Arrived P.H. Saw Bob P. (Pontierre…his brother-in-law)
Sunday 18 Feb—off for 3 day “training” cruise around islands. To try everything—and every kind of drill. Gunnery today excellent—cut sleave in half.
Fri. 2 March—Underweigh to Honolulu. Docks for loading.
Mon 5 March—Underweigh to Saipan—escort A.P.D.; 10th Army Island Command; 3 Generals—30 colonels—40 Lt. Cols.—570 troops—vehicles, etc. etc.
Sat 10—Skipped because of dateline
Fri 16 March—arrived Saipan; B-29’s all over the place
Sun 19—Around the Island with Col. Jennings; wonderful intelligence photos. Camp (Guess…Susupe)—18,000 natives. The wonders of the B-29’s all load(ed) for the nights mission
24 March—Met Howard Stauffer on D.D. 706 (Guess…Garnerd.) ó ó ó óóó (These are supposed to be drawing of six stars…I assume he was off by at least one star!) Last letter to Re.
26 March—Last day at Saipan before Iceberg Show. Fun at club.
27 March—Off to Iceberg (dawn); 24 ships—plus 6 DD’s—2 APD’s; B-29’s dip wings coming in bet. Convoy; TAM Medical & Strategy thru out day; wonderful planning; Capt. announces destination; April 1st, Easter Sunday; “Biggest Show on Earth”
28 March—Word that operation progressing O.K.; more med. Briefing; little island off S.W. of “Iceberg” taken; another day closer; convoy intact; Report of suicide planes at target
29th—Resistance to naval units we hear is increasing. Briefing continues.
30th—1 Sub contact—lost; 1 surface contact investigated 9 miles dead ahead of DD; Proved to be 1 of our own subs recharging batteries
31st—passed floating mine; several friendly planes patrolling sky; news from target area good & encouraging; yesterday Radio Tokyo said our convoy (26 ships) was sunk; Today “Tokyo Rose” gave our lat. And long. And “welcomed” us to target; morale, tense but excellent this D; end 30th and 6th ‘Versary. (now, I don’t know what ‘Versary is because this is a different date and number.)
1st April—(This is one of the pages I sent a photo of, so you can see his writing. I have been punctuating as best as I could, in order to keep some continuity to his bullet statements)Easter Sunday; L-Day; G.Q. at 5:00; (Baptism of Fire) Lead ship Hinsdale took 30 casualties in engine room—a suicide as did an LST; Hinsdale taking water; LST ablaze; Demonstration group otherwise o.k. with no other resistance; A.P.D. escorted us around S. tip of Okinawa into China Sea. 07:25 to 1015; ships everywhere; BB’s shelling beaches; H-hour 8:30; Ships all over the place (1800 plus); All beaches made easily; Casualties exceptionally light; no resistance; Chaplain, “I hope so.”; Beside El Dorado; 50,000 men hit beaches; 3 days ahead of schedule; GQ tonight; 2 planes over—all Hell broke loose—sky red & solid with tracers—1 shot down—1 a suicide into West Virginia (BB); Shore fighting progressing thru out night; star skills; batteries; machine gun fire; all Jap troops have apparently taken to the hills; 2 air strips have been secured; Biggest and most rapid action to date in Pacific
2nd at GQ all night 0025 to almost 0700; some plane in in early a.m .; landings on beaches progress with no opposition; all the CB’s on LST’s going in with all their equip.; more planes in the area; condition “white” all day; casualties continue unusually light; artillery fire heard all day; 7th Div. Army have cut island in half; no sizeable force of Japs have been found yet; most of pill boxes and emplacements, etc. “dummies”; Early G.Q. this evening when radar picked up plane coming in. Uneventful. More & more ships appearing in area thu out day. Moved up with Eldorado to with 2500 yds. of beach—“grandstand seat”; Planes sprayed areas taken to date with DDT 5% in diesel oil for insect an malaria control. Operation approx. 5 days ahead of schedule. Heard tonite that “news” was “broken” at home probably on Easter Sun night. At G.Q. all night.
3 April—everything continues on rapidly; more ships in many have left; ships unloading rapidly; supplies pouring ashore; Marines & Army cut island in half today reaching L+15 lines on this day L+2. Casualties remain light. 230 Marines wounded. 9 KIA; Army reports not in yet; Hear (Guess…Perama Reta) took bombing last night & 4 of our convoy ships hit but not seriously; many more fighter planes over area; 2 G.Q. tonite in rapid succession at dusk; dogfights 25 miles away—our planes “splashed” 4 Japs—chased others; all quiet now; “Cond. White”; moonrise later 2300 tonite—so G.Q. should come about 0200.
4 April—G.Q. at 0810 and again at dawn; slept most of day—nothing much doing; weather clouding up & sea becoming rough; Total casualties on beach 630 WIA 109 KIA; one of ships to(ok) bomb in wardroom during last night’s raid killing most of command of regiment aboard. Heard tonight we are going to “sit” here until harbor secured & Is. Com. & 10th Army Hdqts. can make 1 move into permanent location. Boy from AKA ahead of us lost overboard in unloading—spotlights revealed nothing. Word of Marine looting on beaches and desecration of burial vaults & keeping small vases of ashes for souvenirs. Jeep driver (10th Army) hit in shoulder by Jap sniper. More and more supplies pouring ashore all day; Overcast eliminated dusk G.Q. for first tonite.
5 April—No “flash red” all night; slept straight thru; very cold and N.E. all day water rough; midget sub caught (?) 3 miles above us; Marines at Peninsular line; Army within one mile of Naha and still no Japs army of any force or many civilians; 66,000 Japs Army + 350-400,000 civilians have literally “vanished”—only the aged have been left behind; a few planes tried to come over today but were intercepted and either chased or “splashed”; had warning this a.m. from “Delegate” to prepare for mass air attack but nothing evolved; Tonight is cold but clear & starry—maybe they’ll be over
6 April—Mass air attack began 1310 today—planes & more planes seemed to be over all the time. LSV-6 taking credit for shooting down 1; Attack kept up ‘til nightfall. Enemy planes shot down in entire area (island, screen, & attach force) total 287; Most of destroyer screen sustained hits and casualties; took 3 casualties aboard from a destroyer (Hitchins)—1 died shortly after coming aboard (L.L.Q. blown out)—1 had comp. fract. post. (Guess...mallealus) at ankle with loss of Achilles tendon & puncture wound lf. Lower leg—1 Lt. had piece of shrapnel size of silver $ in lf. buttock (joking about telling his children for what he received “purple heart”), “shot in a__.” Operated on cases until 0330. 2 or 3 of our planes shot down by ship fire from harbor.
7 April—G.Q. at 0330; “Bomb” (?) went off just beside ship at beginning—rest uneventful; spent morning squaring away for PT’s transfer to hospital ship and burial of Anderson on beach (20 years old—wife same age—1 child about 1 yr.); Slept till late afternoon; Heard tonight army is meeting organized resistance just above Naha—this is the first real fight; Our fleet is supposed to be going out to meet Jap fleet; Story has it that one of Jap planes shot down yesterday pilot was only wounded—was strap locked in cockpit—had only enough gas for 1 way trip & in funeral garb—had been flying only 10 days; Fighter squadrons(about 80 Corsairs) landed on fields today.
8 April—700 G.Q. tonight; cloudy all day; Airmail service began today and will be daily; Fleet last night destroyed a small Jap task force of BB cruiser, and several destroyers; All jeeps off vehicle deck; more material and personnel going ashore tomorrow; Dr. (Guess...Safield) (Shriner’s Hosp. Chicago) brought me a rice bowl as souvenir from beach; Japs have lost a total of 391 planes in past 3 days activity.
9 April—G.Q. for 1 hr early this a.m. & again this evening; more fighter planes (night fighters) landed on strip this a.m.; Began to unload ship in earnest today; 96th Corps. has been meeting all resistance alone Naha; each 0700 Jap artillery & mortar fire would open up—this has been most methodical for past 4 days—this a.m. at 0500 96 Corp charged position—found guns & mortars but no Japs—surrounded each emplacement at just before 0700—Japs began coming out of underground hiding places—result: no more Japs in this sector; Our casualties are increasing but no definite no. has been announced; 10 Vals attacked one of our radar screen DD’s tonight putting it out of commission—4 Vals “splashed” others chased.
11 April—Not much happening last 2 days; foul weather and high seas have delayed all unloading; 1st Echelon came in today LSV-3 with it. Small island northern part of eastern bay secured today with 6 KIA, 3 WIA, and 150 Japs KIA—no P.O.W.; Warning tonight of mass air raid tomorrow (Formosa & Japan); “Radio Tokyo” continues to rave on about our terrific losses. Each daily broadcast becomes more and more absurd.
12 April—A beautiful spring day much like it would be at home—sky cloudless water calm; unloading did not go well in area because of lack of boats; mass air attack at 1330 and lasted until 1730—our fighters shot down 73 planes in area—we lost 2—many dog-fights—no ship’s fire—Japs came over in successive waves; We had 1 DD sunk and 1 AE sunk and 4 or 5 others hit—casualties ? but presumed light—1 DD transferred 6 casualties to Pinkney (Guess...APN 2 or APH 2; Went to G.Q. at 1945 to 2015—“Nuisance Raids” which our fighters handles; Reports from beach that 10th army 27 corps. are meeting real opposition above Naha where Japs are entrenched in real fortifications—concentrically placed to protect all sides; Big pushed scheduled for for Saturday 14 April; 6 complete army divisions are now ashore; Casualties approx 1500 W.I.A. with 300 K.I.A.—Evacuating 150 daily in 5 ambulance C-46’s—hope to increase this to 250—Evac. To Marrianna’s (Guam & Saipan 7 ¼ hours); Many psychneurotics & battle neuroses cropping up on front lines probably from heavy & continuous artillery fire of both sides.
1945 13 April Friday—Received news of Pres. R’s sudden death yesterday afternoon; Quiet all day—several nuisance raids 1700 to 2300; Unloading going as slow as ever
14 April—Unloading completed at long last. Only few nuisance raids today; “Big Pushed” at Naha live deferred until can get more ammunition moved up to front lines. Rumor—Germany Surrenders. Russia declares war on Japan.
15 April Sunday—Quiet all day but at night had practically an “all night” at g.q. with several planes coming in having gotten past our fighters. 5 shot down in immediate island area.
16 April—Order came during night to get under weigh. Left with 15 ships 5 escorts Convoy at 0900; on way out fighters shot down a Jap bomber off our port beam; remainder of day uneventful; Okinawa had another heavy air attack with 250 planes shot down.
17 April—Routine day; 420 miles out at 1800.
19 April—News of Ernie Pyle’s death at Iwo Jima (above Okinawa yesterday)
20 April—Arrived Saipan (1500); Mustang’s welcome us “home” at 35—400 miles/hr.
25—Left Saipan with Osage #3 for Peilileu (?), Palau Is.
29—Across bay to Anguar
30—Around Island—Dr, Imas, Dr. Flagg, Lt. Lagi—jeep around island—native village—B-24 bomber strips—amazing coral & volcanic formations one end of island—Little Pali (hill with 4 wheel drive up & down)—the Bowl (bloody gulch)—2 or 3 Japs being found every so often—Lighthouse “cut” in half by 16” shells—Phosphate & Boxite mill—(Guess…Yanis, Yarvis) T.B. & G.C. in natives; Officer’s mess—skull of Jap lookout on roof—still “looking out”
2 May—Underway to Saipan
4 May—Radio order that we are to go to S.F.—we are all keeping our fingers crossed!!!
5 May—Arrived Saipan
6 May—Underway to S.F.—E.T.A. 20 May
9 May—VE Day out here (the 8th at home); at 0100 heard Truman & Churchill proclaim it to the world.
15 May—Passed P.H.; thru channel between Oahu and Molakai
19—Rendez-vous with submarine; acute appendix
20—Arrive S.F.; people on Golden Gate waving
23—To Dry-dock Hunter’s Point for repair hull + screw
25—Out of dry-dock; spent day with “Genks”
26—Underway 1200 for
31 May—Arrived Kahului, Maui; Immediately to Lanehuli Rds opposite side of island
1 June—Discharged LVT;s Underway for Honolulu 1000
3 June Sun—Underway for S.F.; 575 casualties—Oki, Iwo; 400 odd passengers—“pointers’ etc.
9 June—Arrived S.F. 1400—Pier 7; Discharged PT’s most expeditiously; Called Re.
10 June—Moved out into stream
19 June—To Pier #92 to load
20 June—Underway to P.H.; 750 Navy Aviation Corp & 18 dags (Coast Guard) plus LVT’s.
23 June—Circumcision; Fungus infection foreskin & glans
25 June—Arrival P.H.
27 June—Did not leave today because gyro compass 2º off !!!!!!!!!!!
28 June—Underway for Maui to discharge LVT’s
29 June—Underway for S.F. with 600 odd casuals and 80 odd officers to arrive arn. 4 July
4 July—Arrived S.F.—called Re—talked to Bobby (This was my father, Robert Price, who would have been two-years-old. Charlie is Bobby’s brother, and is about a year older) on his birthday & Charlie & everybody.
11 July—Underway to P.H. (1286 Navy passengers) & Guam; We are wondering what happened to East Coast “scuttlebutt.” (One of the letters home says he thinks they are going to New York.)
15 July—Arrived P.H. 1430.
16 July—Underway to Duva 1800; 80 Academy boys aboard in addition to others.
23 July—Arrived Eniwetok; Sat 21 July—(Shipped)
24 July—Underway for Duva; DD escort; “Errol Flynn, esc. Skin (Guess…Show)”
27 July—Arrived Duva
28 July—Left Duva for S.F. alone non-stop; 480 some passengers “goin’ home” for first time in too many years
6 Aug—Enroute to S.F.; Advent of atomic bomb.
9 Aug—Jap “offers” to surrender if keep Hirohito
Sat 11 Aug—Terms repeated to Japan; V-J day expected tomorrow or Mon.; Arrived S.F.; Welcome Home Tug with band & girls; Days over 30-42 mos.
Tues 14 Aug—Peace at 400 p.m. Calif Time; (written very large) Riots & celebration in S.F.; “Officer Souvenirs”; Point system out (does not include medicos.)
Sat 25 Aug—Underway to Manila via (Guess...Ulttri); 1250 Army replacements aboard (Av. Age 19 yrs)
Sun 26—Appendectomy on Army boy
Sat 1 Sept—Heard official surrender signing aboard U.S.S. Missouri (2 Sept Tokyo time); Truman declared tomorrow 2 Sept “Official” V-J Day
2 Sept Sun.—Official V-J Day
3 Sept (Labor Day)—Skipped by crossing 180º
4 Sept Tuesday—Censorship off—civilian clothes permitted after hours in Cont. U.S.; “Sales Talk” about medicos turning U.(Guess…G).N.
7 Sept—First night of “light”; ship underway (Merchant Marine order?)
8 Sept—Arrived Ulithi; big anchorage with all kinds in lagoon of atoll; anchored 10 miles from beach 76 fathoms of anchor chain out; Mail from Re.
9 Sept—Underway at 1700 for Manila—in convoy with DE, CVE (Siloney), us, then Dutch merchant—15 Knots; “Light” ship order now official; we are to leave convoy at Leyte & proceed alone.
12 Sept—Left convoy—proc. 20K; Passed Leyte; Mandinao Sea; Sulo Sea; around Los Negros Is. And north toward China Sea; to Manila tomorrow
13 Sept—Arrived Manila; many many ships. Liberty at night; trip in thru breakwater showed hulks of many Jap ships sunk in harbor; City a shambles—death, destruction, strange putrifying odors—pimps & prostitution chief occupation of natives—inflation rules—restaurants & taps rooms poisonous—drenching rain; to 7th Fleet officers club; back to ship
15 Sept—Still sitting around; to beach today for want of something to do; Jeep to San Tomas Base Hsp. #120; “Shopping”; Natives won’t handle “Raleighs”—other brands (some sort of symbol that looks like this¶…which I assume means “pack”) (50.¢)
16 Sept—Troops off today
17 Sept—(Guess…Bug Lee, Buz Lee, Brig Lee) over from Trego AKA 79
19 Sept—Order to go to Okinawa; 8 men 1 off 8 Jeeps 1 Olds 1 Packard; 1800 Underway with APA Noble & Escort DE Eichelberger & us.
21 Sept—Search for C-47 crashed 1500 yesterday—sweeping area—planes around too (we saw flare from something this a.m.—could have been from PC); 2 on 1 raft—6 on 2 rafts picked up between 17-1900.
22 Sept Sat—Arrived Okinawa 1700.
23 Sept—Ashore; mud & dust; left message for Bob (brother-in-law)
24 Sept—Bob aboard all morning
27 Sept—Word of Typhoon coming our way; to load tomorrow instead of waiting until 1st
28 Sept—Moved north to Noho Wan; loaded marines, trucks, & (guess…ducks). all night
29 Sept—Underway for Tientsin; 7 ship convoy with APD Escort. Thru “prohibited” area 1900-2100 (Jap (guess…sown) mines); Typhoon apparently going east of Okinawa & we are running away from it
2 Oct—Arrived Tientsin; no “incidents; Yellow Sea—yellow; Fairly large task force; Exchange $1800 for $1 American.
6 Oct Sat—Unloaded today; Orders to get underway with 15 mins. Notice; 2200 bound for Manila; 8 ships & escort
7 Oct—Orders change for #6 to Okinawa-Guam-Tsingtao
8 Oct—sighted mine but could not explode it. Warning of typhoons of Okinawa; Sea rougher & rougher
9 Oct—Reversed course at 0200; Rock & rolled all night; outskirts of typhoon. 0400 the “turn of turns”
10 Oct—since 0400 have been up “hangin on”; ward room chairs all over; rock & roll all day; Left convoy with DE at 1800; breaking sea & in traugh most of time toward Okinawa; up all night—impossible to sleep
11 Oct Thurs—at Okinawa 1030; ships returning from “riding out” storm; lay to until 1600 then underway to Guam; Storm well over; Word that F.P.O. at Okinawa ruined—our mail probably there.
15 Oct—Arrived Guam; no mail—all at Okinawa
18 Oct—Underway alone for Okinawa; “Ducks” & vehicles 6th Mar. Div. bound for Tsingtao; to pick up personnel at Okinawa
22 Oct—Arrived Buckner Bay Okinawa; late mail from home Oct. 11; first mail in long time Sept. 5 & more than welcome.
Thurs. 25 Oct—Around “the end” to Yellow Beach in afternoon; Underway to Tsingtao with DE (706) Holt as escort; left Okinawa 2100.
Sun 28 Oct—Arrived Tsingtao at noon; modern; (Guess…“bum-boats”) out to meet us and peddle wares; Word we are to be here until 15 Nov.
29 Oct (1945)—Ashore in Tsingtao for first - Chinese all over the place Rick-sha's as numerous as fleas & coolies run all the time. Restaurant area horrible. Cute little kids all over begging. Souvenir stores predominate - most of the stuff like 5 & 10 - "Made in Japan" - No young girls except some white Russians around - all the others working in "houses" - no destruction - city stinks. Exchange 3000 to 1.
1 Nov—Couldn't do appt. on merchant mariner because O.R. painted - took him to 6th Batt. Hosp. (Navy) at Shantumg Univ. - Jap plumbing. Jap billiard table lower than for ours. Lt. Stevens coming Sun. + for dinner (still on C rations so chicken will be good for them.)
4 Nov—Drs. didn't show up. - guess they had duty - no word
8 Nov—Gil's birthday with thoughts (His nickname for himself was "Billiam." And, he called his wife, "Gilliam." This is a reference to her birthday.)
24 Nov—Finally moved from Pier T to Anter Harbor to await orders - states?
29 Nov—Underway at 1500 for Saseko Japan. Entered service 18 mos. ago today.
30 Nov—Noon—passed Island tip of Korea; headed South
1 Dec—Arrived Sesebo, Japan; much departing in harbor; extra precautions; Word we would probably take 5th Marines “home” to San Diego; Japan pretty terrain with rolling hills & high peaks. Jap “pilot” brought us in.
4 Dec—Laurie’s Coronary.
11 Dec—Laurie’s sl. Attacks from “too well too quick”
12—Underway for Diego direct; Called back to be routed to Okinawa; left again only to turn back after 1 hour because of something slapping against starboard side of ship beneath waterline; diver cut of 12 ft. of bilge keel apparently broken at Tsingtao beside dock with listing for paint ship.
13 Dec Thursday—Underway at 0700 for Okinawa for additional passengers
14 Dec Friday—Arrived Okie; Mail (rifles home) barges alongside on arrival; race against time but could not finish loading by 1730
15 Dec. Sat—Underway 0630 for San Diego to ETA 1300 29th
20—Got (guess…Aluav) from passing ship from States
21—Lieutenant “official” Friday (he’s talking about his promotion). Crossed 180°—2 Fridays
29—Arrived S.D.; Laurie to Hosp; nice reception—hands & tears
2 Jan 46—Assigned to 16th Flt. Goin’ round “as soon as ready for sea.”
15 Jan 46—Underway for Panama Canal; Laurie has progressively improved; Still not sure what is in store for us of the “Mighty M”; “Inactive Reserve 15th Fleet.”? Orleans; Orange Texas
Jan 23—Arrived Panama 1130; anchored out; to “transit” tomorrow 0730
Jan 24—Panama Canal—0830; Coco Solo 1830; Bottleneck at last (Gutan) (guess…Cocks, Codes, Coches); Officer’s Club & “slumming” in Colon
Jan 25—Underway alone & empty for New Orleans (1530)
29—Arrived N.O.; no customs inspections started
31 Jan—Home on leave
2 Feb—30th St. Station; Gilliam my Gilliam home—home—home
24 Feb—So long to Gilliam at 30th St.; Ship to Houston
26 Feb—930 p.m. arrived Houston plane from N.O.; Ship at Brown Shipbuilding 18 miles out of city.
27th—Word of reconversion to AKN
28th—Going to Boston for recon; Boston recon delayed to 1 July; meanwhile to haul “ammo” out of Earle N.J.—nearer and nearer to home.
8 March—Refueled 300,000 gals; Sinclair docks; overnight layover
9 March—Underway to Earle N.J. 0630; ETA 1000 14 Mar.
Home for weekend of 16th and weekend of 24th.
25th March—Started loading bombs for sea-disposal today at Earle; last week spent at N.Y. Port of Embarkation having “shorring” put on vehicle deck.
29th Fri—Home for short week-end; Underway Sun. 31st at 1000. Birthday party on 30th for Re—insists it is not our “versary”; Bumpy ride up in early a.m. to Leonardo Pier—made trip in 2 hrs—Jim & Anne’s (guess…V-8, V-s…I don’t know who these people are. I’ll have to refer to the letters.) of all days to go to sea (symbols which may mean swearing).
4 April 46 Thurs—Janee’s (his youngest child, Jane “Jayne” Price Springer) 1st Birthday.
5 April—Home again for the week-end—will May 29th ever come?!!
12 April—Home again!!!
15 April—To Leonardo’s to start loading again.
19 April—Home again for wonderful Easter Sunday—so different from last Easter!
27 April—Sat. home again; in too late for dumping “ammo” to get off Fri
3 May—Home Again
Patterson takes over as
10 May—Home again; Mother’s Day 13th