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Page 20 text:
By this time, the crew was calling their ship, "The Fighting Foreman," and even now,
they speak affectionately of her by this name.
She departed for Manus, a worn ship with a weary crew. Replenishment and rest was
During the remainder of the year 1944, the little Navy ship "turned to" once again on
missions of escort between Hollandia, Dutch New Guinea and Seadler Harbor at Manus
in the Admiralty Islands. The ships she escorted brought supplies and much-needed
equipment to the rapid-expanding New Guinea base.
Christmas Day was spent at Manus. A festive holiday dinner was served, including
traditional turkey and the fixings. All hands enjoyed a full day of rest by order of the
Skipper, and opened packages received from home. Despite gay decorations in the
crew's mess hall, and their attempts to feel happy, it was evident that many were the
thoughts of "those Christmases at home." Few spoke of it, but all were thinking of the
next Christmas, and wondering whether it, too, would be spent in Far Pacific waters.
By the end of 1944, the Foreman and her crew were veterans of the Pacific war,
participants in three invasions, accomplished .travelers of the South Pacific, experienced
in the battle tactics if the enemy, had known war weariness, and witnesses of the
inception of the new Japanese air techniques of "Kamikaze fDivine Windy Attacks."
They were to see more of this technique as their efforts in the war continued.
During 1944, major events had taken place aboard ship. Her commissioning Captain,
her commissioning Executive Officer, and her original Engineering Officer had been
replaced. So had the first ASW officer. Many new faces were to be seen among her
crew, and a few of the old ones were missing. A new battle-witness was evident. This
was to be an advantage in days to come.
As the year 1945 opened, the Philippines clampaign was almost complete. The big
ships were engaging the enemy in the last big naval battle of the war, and the last
phase of the Pacific war was beginning.
The outlook for action for the DE appeared not very bright as it continued its usual
escort runs between Hollandia and Manus for the first weeks in January.
However, the crew need have had no worries about inaction and boredom, as later
events were to prove.
A slight diversion was offered when on January 22nd, she -was ordered on escort to
Eniwotok in the Marshall Islands, and enroute picked up another sound contact, which,
after several hours, proved not to be a submarine. This was new duty, and the crew's
interest was renewed. The Foreman returned to Manus, and immediately was returned
to Majuro, also in the Marshalls, on another escort mission, which almost resulted in her
Page 19 text:
The Philippine Campaign
Arriving at Leyte Gulf on the morning of October 30th, the Foreman was immediately to
learn the rugged character of the campaign upon which she had embarked.
For that very morning she went to General Quarters twice because of air alerts, and
battle stations were manned three times in the afternoon. The Foreman's crew
witnessed their first "Kamikaze" attack, then the newest weapon the Japanese enemy
was employing its desperate struggle to retain its hold in the former American territory.
Many if these suicide attempts were observed and AA fire was a common sight in Leyte
Gulf. On the morning of October 31st, the ship again went to General Quarters, and her
crew was at their Battle Stations at various times of the day and night, remaining from 3
minutes to 3 hours at each.
The ship was ordered on escort duty to Hollandia on November 1, and proceeded with
her convoy, but enroute was recalled to Kossol Passage, Palau Islands for
replenishment and another escort mission for return to Leyte Gulf. Enroute Palau, a
definite undenrvater contact was made, and an 8-hour tracking ensued in company with
another escort. Several patterns of anti-submarine charges were loosed with no
From Palau, the Foreman retuned to Leyte Gulf on November 7. On the morning of
arrival, she sighted an enemy plan, but the friendly combat air patrol "tally-hoed,"
chased, and shot it down before it approached her group.
Cn the afternoon of 12 November, the crew of the small destroyer observed suicide air
attacks on one LST and a merchant vessel in the San Pedro harbor. The Foreman
opened fire on an enemy plane, but a friendly P-38 shot the attacker down.
On 14th of November, she observed 3 enemy planes shot down during an air raid.
Early on the day of her departure from the Leyte Gulf Area fNovember 16015, she
observed enemy strafing and bombingattacks on shore installations near-by.
The Foreman has survived still another invasion, and proudly she points to her
participation in the Philippine Liberation.
During the period of 7 November to 16 November alone, she manned her battle stations
for air raid alerts and for actual combat some 32 times. Her men were awakened at all
hours, some slept with their clothes on, and the resounding "Clang, clang" of her
general alarm could have been heard in her passage-ways many times during that
second most strenuous period in her career. Her roughest campaign was yet before
Page 21 text:
return to the United States. Events negating this happyjuncture, she returned to Manus
on February Gm. '
After a few days at anchor, the Foreman was again undenlvay. Her orders read Ulithi
Atoll in the Caroline Islands, and the crew read between the lines and realized that this
was the end to rear area duty for her. This time they back in the fight.
On the 20th of February she returned to lVlanus for replenishment, joined again with her
sister ship, the USS England, and together they sailed to Ulithi, saying goodbye to
Manus Island forever.
Their new base was just then assuming a tremendous role in the last step of the war-
the strikes against the Jap homeland, and all about her, the Foreman saw bustling
activity, and felt the thrill of knowing that she, too, was to play her part in the crushing of
the Nip empire. On all sides, she saw the might of the U.S. Navy drawn together, and
knew that big things were afoot. Here, at last, she was the "fighting Navy."
From now on, the destinies of the Foreman were to be closely allied with those of the
Fifth Fleet, the striking fleet of one of the leaders of the Naval war, Admiral Raymond A.
Arriving on the 5th of lVlarch at the nerve center of future attacks on Japan, the Foreman
knew she was through with merchant escorting and other "rear area" tasks. Now she
was with the "heavies" and that meant action.
This conception was not wrong, for after a few days, at Ulithi, and another brief period at
Palau, and a one-day trip to Pelelieu, the Foreman was ordered to rush back to the
Ulithi and there was ordered to join Task Force 54, composed of battleships, cruisers,
destroyers, and one or two other destroyer escorts. The orders left no doubt. This was
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