USS Montrose (APA-212)
The USS Montrose (APA-212) was a Haskell class attack transport that saw service with the US Navy in World War II, the Korean War and Vietnam War. USS Montrose Awards: One battle star for World War II service, three for the Korean War, and six for the Vietnam war. Montrose participated in the landings in Kerama Retto 26 March, and on 2 April, shot down two kamikazes. She steamed to Menna-shima off Okinawa 15 April, and disembarked units of the 306th Field Artillery. Four days later she took part in a diversionary feint on the southwest tip of Okinawa, returning to Menna Shima 23 April. Leaving the Ryukus she sailed to Ulithi with Army casualties, en route to San Francisco to embark more troops. She debarked these units at Manila 27 July.
After hostilities: For the next 2 months she shuttled troops between the Philippines and Hawaii. From 25 August to 24 October, Montrose was busy carrying occupation troops to Sasebo, Kyūshū. She was decommissioned on 26 October 1946, and was assigned to the Pacific Reserve Fleet at Stockton, California.
Korean War: After hostilities broke out in Korea, Montrose recommissioned 12 September 1950, and arrived Yokosuka, Japan, 8 January 1951 to help repel the invasion by North Korea. She took troops to Inchon early in 1951; and, in April, after a run to Hong Kong, she steamed for the California coast. She returned to Yokosuka 30 July 1952, and joined TF 90, supporting operations off Korea, until returning to San Diego 6 December. She returned to Japan in March 1954 and took part in training exercises from Iwo Jima to Korea.
Peacetime operations: Operation Passage to Freedom. When war threatened in Indochina, she sailed to Saigon. Leaving Saigon 9 August, she proceeded to Haiphong to evacuate refugees from there to Saigon as part of operation "Passage to Freedom." By 12 September Montrose had evacuated 9,060 people. She sailed home, arriving San Diego 21 November.
Transport and training missions: In March 1955, Montrose traveled again to Japan, disembarking members of the 3rd Marine Division. Between April and November she helped train South Korean amphibious forces and operated off the Japanese coast, until steaming to San Diego in November. She spent the early part of 1956 in training, before proceeding to the Far East for operations in the Bay of Siam in October. She arrived San Diego 13 April 1957, and operated off the California coast for the next 5 months. In September she took part in cold weather landing exercises near Kodiak, Alaska, then remained on the west coast until 12 June, when she sailed for Japan. Between 1958 and 1965, she operated off the California coast, and made several voyages to the Far East.
Vietnam War: With the situation in South Vietnam becoming more precarious, Montrose left San Diego 23 August 1965, to begin training off Okinawa. In November, she conducted several successful strikes against the Vietcong, the first attack coming at Lang Keaa. The following month she participated in a massive attack on the Vietcong near Da Nang. She sailed 25 January 1966 for Gu Lao Re, and assisted in an attack on a Vietcong stronghold there. She arrived 14 April at San Diego, and returned for her 12th deployment in the western Pacific early in 1967. She anchored at the mouth of Long Tau River, South Vietnam, on 23 March, and took part in the establishment of a powerful riverine force. While delivering supplies at Dong Ha 25 May, Montrose came under hostile fire. She arrived 16 September 1968 at San Diego, and began preparation for a return trip to the western Paciflc into 1969.
Final decommission: Montrose was struck from the Naval register on 2 November 1969 and returned to the Maritime Administration, who sold her for scrapping to the Ziddell Corporation of Portland, Oregon in 1970.
The USS Pine Island (AV-12), a Currituck-class seaplane tender, is the only ship of the United States Navy to hold this name. The ship was named after Pine Island Sound (off the coast of Lee County, Florida).
World War II: Departing California on 16 June 1945, Pine Island steamed to Okinawa. There she tended seaplanes engaged in air-sea rescue operations during the final phases of World War II. At the end of the war, she entered Tokyo Bay and contributed seaplane flight operations to the occupation of Japan in 1945. Following occupation duty in Japan, she conducted seaplane flight operations in the Whangpoo River near Shanghai, China. She left the Pacific in 1946, and steamed via the Suez Canal to Norfolk, Virginia.
Operation Highjump: Departing Norfolk on December 4, she crossed the Antarctic Circle on 25 December 1946. Carrying three PBM-5 Mariner seaplanes; one Sikorsky HO3S-1 helicopter and one Curtis SOC Seagull amphibian, she contributed to the aerial exploration of Antarctica in Operation Highjump, and saved several downed aviators from the hostile climate. In addition a bay in Antarctica, Pine Island Bay, was named in honor of the ship. A glacier on Thurston Island was also named after the ship. Departing the Antarctic in March, she traveled from Rio de Janeiro via the Panama Canal to San Diego, California, arriving there in April. Leaving California for the Far East in August 1947, she spent the winter at Tsingtao, China and the summer of 1948 in the Northern Pacific. Awaiting a major overhaul in 1949, she was decommissioned on 1 May 1950.
Korean War: Recommissioned on 7 October 1950 at Alameda, California, in response to the Korean War, she departed for the Western Pacific in December. She tended seaplanes that flew missions over enemy-held territory in Korea, before returning to San Diego in September 1951. She was away from California on WestPac deployments January to September 1952, February to September 1953, January to August 1954, and February to August 1955. Deployed to WestPac in June 1956, she visited Brunei, Borneo, in August, before returning to San Diego in December. From April to December 1957 she operated again in WestPac. Sailing for WestPac in May 1958, she visited Bangkok, Thailand, and was at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, during the Second Taiwan Strait Crisis. She returned to San Diego in December, and departed for WestPac in June 1959. During 1960 and 1961 she continued her Pacific duties. Deployed to WestPac from January to June 1962, she embarked news media personnel from several countries in March in connection with the SEATO exercise "Tulungan." Steaming for WestPac in March 1963, she operated out of Okinawa, received visitors at Chinhae, Korea, in June, and delivered fresh water to Hong Kong in August, before returning to San Diego in September. In January 1964 she departed San Diego for the Galapagos Islands, where she provided assistance to scientists before returning to San Diego in February.
Vietnam War: Deployed to WestPac in June 1964, she served at Da Nang, South Vietnam, in August. In September 1965, she returned to WestPac, conducted seaplane operations in Cam Ranh Bay, South Vietnam, and participated in the 1966 Coral Sea anniversary festivities in Australia and New Zealand before returning to San Diego in June. It also took place in Operation Market Time. Decommissioned in Puget Sound Naval Shipyard on 16 June 1967, Pine Island entered the Maritime Administration's National Defense Reserve Fleet, at Suisun Bay, CA, where she remained until stricken on 1 February 1971, and was later sold to Zidell Exploration of Portland, Oregon on 7 March 1972. Pine Island received one battle star for World War II service, and service medals for Korea and Vietnam.