RALPH E. JACOBS


Ralph E. Jacobs was born on November 29, 1915, and is from Lafayette, Indiana. He attended boot camp in Great Lakes, Illinois, and received gunnery training at the Chicago Naval Armory. He was an instructor at gunnery maintenance school for the 5-inch 38 caliber gun and attended hydraulic school, NOB, in Norfolk, Virginia, and also gunner's school in Washington, D.C. Ralph sailed on the SS PENNSYLVANIA to Liver- pool, England; Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; the Panama Canal; Capetown, South Africa; and Port Said, Egypt. On the way back, he got a 5-hour shore leave in Havana, Cuba. He also sailed on the JOHN G. CARLISLE to Cardiff, Wales. His most memorable experience was from September 1943 to December 1943, when he was in the St. Albans Hospital in New York with yellow jaundice. Ralph received the American Area Medal, the Europe- an-African-Middle Eastern Area Medal and Good Con- duct Medal. He was discharged from the Navy September 11, 1945, as a Gunners Mate 1/C. He returned to the Aluminum Company of America as a press operator in September 1945, and now enjoys retire- ment and traveling. He has a wife, Helen D.; a daughter, Janice Jean Steele; and a grandson, Justin Jacobs Steele, who lives in PurceUville, Virginia. His current address is 1400 Holloway Drive, Lafayette, Indiana 47905. ROLAND JERVE


Roland Jerve was born January 2, 1926, in Chippewa County, Montevideo, Minnesota. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy December 29, 1943, and went to boot camp at Far- ragut, Idaho. He then was sent to Treasure Island, San Francisco, California, February 15, 1944. At Treasure Island he was assigned to the Armed Guard crew of the MV BLOEMFONTE1N, a Dutch troop carri- er. He sailed on the BLOEMFONTEIN until March 1945, at which time he was assigned to the SS ROBIN WENTLY. He made seven complete trips across the Pacific, carrying troops to most of the islands from New Zealand to Okinawa. They also carried troops back to the States and also brought Japanese prisoners to Hawaii. He returned to San Francisco, Pier 28, in 1946, and was dis- charged in spring 1946 at Fort Snelling, St. Paul, Minneso- ta. Roland married his wife, Violet, in April 1949. They have two sons and five grandchildren. He retired in 1988 after owning his own motel and restaurant for a number of years. His address is 516 North 10th Street, Montevideo, Minnesota 56265. ALLEN E. JOHNSON


Allen E. Johnson was born October 7, 1923, in Little Rock, Arkansas. He lived and attended school in Vimy Ridge, Arkansas, and left the eighth grade to join the CCC's to help his family during the depression. He joined the U.S. Navy in May 1941, and trained at the San Diego training center. He reported aboard the USS PENNSYLVANIA BB 38 at Pearl Harbor, Oahu, and served as a signalman striker. Allen was aboard the USS PENNSYLVANIA in dry dock at the time of the attack on Pearl Harbor December 7, 1941. The ship was hit with one bomb. The Destroyers CASSIN and DOWNES were hit, exploded forward of the PENNSYLVANIA in the dry dock and were destroyed. After emergency repairs, the PENNSYLVANIA trans- ferred to San Francisco for further repairs. The secondary guns were also changed from 5-inch 25s to 5-inch 38s and 3-inch to 40mm quads. A lot of 20mm single mounts were also installed. After repairs, the PENNSYLVANIA made one trip south between Mexico and the Hawaiian Islands, returning to San Pedro, California, where Allen was trans- ferred to the Armed Guard Center at New Orleans. He then went to Key West, Florida, making three trips to Norfolk, Virginia, and two trips to Key West with thc Commodore. Allen made one additional trip to Key West and back to New York with the Vice Commodore, then was assigned to the USATJ .W. MCANDREWS in Octo- ber 1942. Allen was at the invasion of North Africa at Casablanca and earned a battle star. He was wounded on a third trip to Oran, Algiers and received the Purple Heart as a result of a straffing by a German plane. He then transferred to a Liberty Ship, the SS LAURA KEENE, and made 3rd class signalman. The KEENE was waiting to get loaded for a Murmansk Convoy when it was rammed. The convoy sailed while the ship underwent repair. On another trip returning to New York from Liverpool England, the ship cracked 0:om the #3 hold to the water line on the starboard side. The crack was secured with 100 feet of wire cable and turnbuckles, and returned to New York in time for Christmas. The KEENE spent the next six months shuttling in the Mediterranean and was in on the invasion of Southern France for which Allen received his second battle star. While on the KEENE, he also made sec. ond class. Allen was then transferred to the SS ST. ALBANS VIC- TORY, making three round trips carrying supplies. In all. Allen made 15 round trips across the Atlantic Ocean. After the third Atlantic crossing on the VICTORY, Allen received 30 days leave and reported to the Armed Guard Center at Treasure Island. He made first class before being assigned to the SS HEGIRA, which was built in World War I at Hog Island. He made one trip down to South America to Santiago, Chile, but missed getting on the ship for the return journey and had to ride a bus to the next port where the ship was putting in. Allen says it was quite an adventure to ride across the desert with all the people and their animals crowding aboard. Allen then was transferred to the USS BANNER APA 60, destination Bikini Atoll via Pearl Harbor. The BAN- NER was one of thc target ships for Operations Crossroads Atom Bomb test in July o1' 1946. Allen was transferred to the USS FALL RIVER CA 131 (Flag Allow, CTG 1.2) and went back to Pearl, where he was again transferred to Staff of Service Forces Administration, and sent on Shore Patrol, serving two years. Allen then served Comserpac as assistant master of arms for three months, and was transferred to the USS SERRA- NO ATF-112, USS DELIVER ARS-23 and the USS CONSERVER ARS-39. After getting out in 1948, he joined the Naval Reserve. He worked for four months on the Southern Pacific rail- road as a brakeman, then started to work for Pacific Gas and Electric Company in 1949. He was recalled to the Navy for the Korean War, serving 18 months on the LST- 840 and LST-855. Allen met and married Jeanette Lake in Burney April 1950. They have two daughters, Betty and Florence, and one son, Thomas. Thomas is a FCC in the Navy with 12 years. Allen has five grandchildren and one great- granddaughter. He and his wife live at 605 Acacia Lane, Chico, California. His phone number is (916) 345-1729. Allen retired from PG&E with 40 years of service as an Electric Technician. HAROLD T. JOHNSON


Harold T. Johnson was born January 8, 1927, on a farm near Kanawha, Iowa. He grew up in Goldfield, lowa. In January 1944, he volunteered for naval service and was sent to the Farragut, Idaho, Naval Training Base for boot camp. In June 1944, he was sent to San Diego repair base for gunnery school. Alter four weeks, he was sent to Trea- sure Island and received orders to report on board the SS CAPE PERPETUA, a C-3 troop transport. His first trip was to Seattle, where he met Frances VanPelt, an employee of Boeing aircraft, whom he later married in February 1946, while he was on leave. In July 1945, he was ordered aboard the CHARLES M. CONRAD, a Liberty Ship. While in the Pacific in Octo- ber 1945, a typhoon hit Okinawa where the ship was anchored and for 36 hours the ship received a real bounc- ing. In November 1945, he arrived at Treasure Island and was taken to the base for guard duty of German POW's. Harold was discharged in May 1946. Harold and Frances have two married daughters, Karen Louise and Beverly Rose, and three grandchildren; Kar- line, Bill, and Terri Sue. After the war, Harold went to Anoka Technical Insti- tute for landscaping. He worked for Hennepin County Park Reserve District, and for the last 16 years for the City of Coon Rapids in the golf course and park department. He retired December 31, 1988, and traveled a lot since then. He also volunteers at the Animal Humane Society. He now lives at 7904 NE Quincy Street, Spring Lake Park, Minnesota 55432. WALTER EDWARD JOHNSON


Walter Edward Johnson was born June 14, 1916, in Palermo, North Dakota, to Edwin and PalmaJohnson. He made his home in Minot where he was employed as a loco- motive engineer for the Great Northern Railroad, which later became the Burlington Northern. On April 1, 1942, Walter enlisted in the U.S. Navy at Minot. He had six weeks of boot camp at San Diego, two months of Signal School at the University of Illinois, a month at the Naval Armory in Los Angeles and then was sent to the Armed Guard Center in San Francisco. He was assigned to the SS LILOLA, carrying supplies to the Aleutians. While unloading cargo at Attu, the Japa- nese planes appeared and bombs fell all around but a direct hit was never made. He served two months on the USAT ALASKA, which sailed up the inside passageway to Sew- ard, Alaska, and was named Signalman 2/C. About March 1, 1944, he arrived at the Armed Guard Center in New Orleans where he served aboard the USAT FLORIDA. His next ship was the SS LUNSFORD RICHARDSON, which he boarded at Wilmington, North Carolina. They crossed the Atlantic five times, docking in England, France and Belgium. The crew was surprised at the calm the people of these countries dis- played when they heard "buzz" bombs overhead. On Sep- tember 25, 1945, he was discharged at the Naval Station in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Walter is a past president of the Minot World War II Last Man's Club and is presently on the Board of Directors of the Minot Railroad Museum. In 1977, he retired from the railroad. He purchased a motor home and he and his wife, Verna, have spent many summers traveling and visit- ing their daughters, Janice and Manette. They still main- tain their home in Minot and plan to spend more time at the cabin at Lake Metigoshe on the Canadian border. His current mailing address is 1612 7th Avenue NW, Minot, North Dakota 58701. WILLIAM E. JOHNSON


William E. "Bill" Johnson was born April 7, 1923, in Hoquiam, Washington. He was raised in the little town of Humptulips, which in Indian means "hard to pole." Humptulips is also the name of the river that runs through the town. Bill was a farm boy and his passion was and is hunting and fishing. Bill enlisted in the U.S. Navy November 24, 1942, in Aberdeen, Washington. He went to San Diego for boot camp. His first ship was a Chinese lend-lease ship the SS CHUNG CHENG which was torpedoed February 4, 1944. He and his mates spent 12 hours in the hl~e boat los- ing one mate and much of the Chinese crew. They were picked up by a British cargo ship and taken to a hospital in the Bay of Aden, where Bill spent the next 18 days. Bill was put on a Dutch transport ship to the Suez Canal, then went by bus to Port Said. He was issued new clothing and on March 14, 1944, was assigned to the SS ELI WHITNEY to come to New York and a long awaited leave. He boarded his third ship, the SS FORT GEORGE, June 9, 1944, at San Pedro. He left the States again on June 20 tor Pearl Harbor through the Panama Canal, New Guinea, the Coral Sea and the Admirahy Islands. Next he went to Australia, the Indian Ocean, the Persian Gulf and spent some time in India. Bill boarded his tourth ship, the SS OCCIDENTAL VICTORY, on May 21, 1945 in San Pedro and spent the next nine months on that ship. He was discharged March 22, 1946, at Bremerton, Washington with the rank of Gunners Mate 3/C. Upon returning home, Bill tried his hand at ranching and logging. He later went to work tbr the City of Hoquiam. He retired from that job in 1986 afier 30 years service. He married his wife, Anne, in 1946. They have a son and a daughter and five grandchildren. Bill and his wife have attended a number of reunions and their first National this year in Seattle. Much to his disappointment, he has not met any former ship mates. His current address is 801 Third Street, Hoquiam, Washington 98550. LaVERN W. JOHNSTON


LaVern W. Johnston of Medford, Oregon, enlisted in the U.S. Navy January 20, 1942. Ships he served on included the SS JAMES B. STE- PHENS and the THADDEUS S.C. LOWE. A Liberty Ship, the STEPHENS, was torpedoed twice and sunk by the German Submarine U- 161) on March 8, 1943, about 150 miles northeast of Durban, South Africa, while LaVern was aboard. LaVern recalls abandoning ship and floating around in the oil and debris loosened by the blast. He says he really didn't think there was much of a chance he'd survive, however, rescue eftbrts were success- ful. The crew was taken to Portland, England, and the ship was reboarded by the crew on June 30, 1943. LaVern was discharged December 14, 1945. He can be reached at 928 W. Second Street, Medfbrd, Oregon 97501. SAMUEL R. JOHNSTON


Samuel R. Johnston was born February 11, 1926, in Harlingen, Texas, but was raised in Toledo, Ohio. He entered active duty in the U.S. Naval Reserve at the age of 18. He attended boot camp at Great Lakes and entered Armed Guard School ar Gulfport, Mississippi, September 24, 1944. His first assignment was a Liberty Ship, the SS WIL- LIAM H. PRESCOTT. He boarded in New Orleans on October 24, 1944. The only casualty on the ship was a winch director who was killed when he fell into the # 5 hold which was being filled with crated ammunitions and the hatch covers fell on him. The ship was carrying 7,500 tons of ammunition, mostly 500 pound bombs. The Armed Guard Captain on the PRESCOTT was Lieutenant j.g. J.L. Irvin. He headed up about 28 enlisted men. The ship went through the Panama Canal to Finschhafen, New Guinea; Biak, Morotai and Sansapor. While anchored in Hollandia Bay with thirty Aussies aboard, Samuel was unable to swim for exercise since his buddy W.W. Wilson of Bear, Delaware, had a cold. As it turned out, a 20-foot tiger shark was spotted where they would have been swim- ming. Brisbane, Australia, was a wonderful stop; then the PRESCOTT sailed to Biak, Morotai, Hollandia, Manus, and into San Francisco. After the war, S3.muel sailed on the USS VOLANS AKS 9, another Liberty Ship. He sailed to Japan, Manus, China, Korea and back to San Francisco. He was discharged May 25, 1946. He retired from the Grand Rapids, Michigan Police Department in 1986 after 38 plus years of service. He now works part time for a school security program during the school year. He reads about the Navy, World War II, guns and sharks. He married Monica Mary Sullivan. They have four children and eight grandchildren. His present address is 1408 Rathbone, Southwest, Wyoming, Michigan 49509. WALTER CUSHARD JOHNSTON


Walter Cushard Johnston was oldest of three children born to Walter William and Dorothy Cushard Johnston in Clearfield, Pennsylvania, December 16, 1922. Walter graduated from Clearfield Senior High School in 1941, and joined the Navy on April 21, 1943, receiving boot training at Camp Dewey at the Great Lakes Training Base, Illinois. He was company #551 bugler at Camp Dewey during basic training (April 1943 to June 1943), from there, he was picked to be a member of battalion Drum and Bugle Corps marching unit which later participated in annual regimental Drum and Bugle competition at the Great Lakes Training Base. His team won. Walter graduated from gunnery school at Gulfport, Mississippi, in August 1943, and was attached to the Armed Guard Center at Brooklyn, New York. He sailed on the FAC MULENBERG from Philadelphia shipyard in September 1943. The MULENBERG was bombed in January 1944 in the harbor at Naples, Italy. He then returned to the United States and was sent to rest camp at Deland, Florida. Walter was assigned to the Armed Guard Dance Band at Brooklyn Center from spring 1944 'til fall 1944, when he was assigned to the SS AFRICAN DAWN and sailed from New York te Africa, Europe, and lndia until the war in Europe ended. He was then assigned to the Armed Guam Transfer Center at Port Said, Egypt, from mid 1945 until the Pacific War ended when he returned to the United States and was discharged November 8, 1945, from Sampson Naval Base, Geneva, New York. He married Delma K. Thompson October 14, 1942, and in 1943 was blessed with one daughter, Patricia Lee. He graduated from Pennsylvania State University in 1955, with a BS degree in Horticulture; certification in Agriculture Education in 1959, and M.Ed. in Counseling in Education in 1962. He returned as a teacher and coun- selor for 25 years at his high school alma mater, Clearfield High School. He is retired from teaching and he owns and operates Johnston's Berry Farm with his wife in Clearfield, Pennsyl- vania. His address is RD #3, Box 1209, Clearfield, Penn- sylvania 16830. CLIFTON E. JONES


Clifton Jones was born in Caldwell County, Kentucky, December 10, 1921. He enlisted in the Navy, July 5, 1942, and was first sent to Great Lakes, Illinois, to boot camp. From there, he went to gunnery school at Little Creek, Virginia. After gunnery school, he was sent to the Armed Guard Center at Brooklyn, New York. His first ship was the tanker, SS PAN CAROLINA. He went aboard at Carteret, New Jersey, September 25, 1942. After two or three trips to Texas City, Beaumont, and Port Arthur, Texas, the tanker was rammed by a British aircraft carrier in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Clifton was taken off the ship and sent to the Armed Guard Center, New Orle- ans, and was given a delay en route to leave back to Brook- lyn. He then went aboard the USAT MEXICO. They sailed to Casablanca with a load of troops and brought back a load of wounded Army and Navy service men and italian prisoners. Clifton was taken off the MEXICO and assigned to the SS JAMES W. NESMITH, for another trip to Oran, back to the States and then to Naples, Italy. He was taken offthe NESMITH on September 10, 1943, and given leave home. He reported back the end of September anti was assigned to the Post Office at the Brooklyn Armed Guard Center until December 30, 1943. He was then assigned to the SS JOHN WOOLMAN. The WOOLMAN sailed to Scotland, where a convoy was made up, sailing to Murmansk, Russia. He arrived back in Portland, Maine, May 1944. He was then pulled down to Boston, and got Port Directors leave. He then made a trip to Liverpool and Manchester, England, with a return trip to the States. He was then given leave. He reported back to the Armed Guard Center in Brook- lyn for assignment to the SS JOHN ARMSTRONG for a trip to Italy, and a return to Norfolk, Virginia. Clifton had an emergency leave home in January 1945. Clifton again reported back to Brooklyn and was trans- ferred to Shoemaker, California, in March 1945. From there, he went to Pearl Harbor, then to the Mariana Islands, Guam, Saipan and Tinian. He was on Tinian when the war ended. He was discharged at Great Lakes in October 1945. He married Mary K. Orange of Caldwell, Kentucky, May 16, 1944, while on leave. They have four children Michael, Steven, Deborah, and Daniel, and six grandchil dren -- four boys and two girls. After the war, Clifton worked for the Veteran's Admin istratiun at Outwood Hospital near Dawson Springs, Ken tucky, for five years. He then worked one year for Genera Motors in Saginaw, Michigan, followed by a return t. Kentucky to work for coal companies for 25 years as: mechanic and welder. He is now retired from Island Creek Coal Company Clifton has bought a cabin on Lake Beshears and plans t. spend time with his children and grandchiklren fishing He has lived at his present address for .32 years. His current address is RR #.3, Box 203, Dawso, Springs, Kentucky 42408. THOMAS W. JONES, JR.


Thomas W. Jones, Jr., was appointed Lt. (jg), in the U.S. Naval Reserves in May 1944. He received orders to Naval Training School in June and reported to NTS at Princeton University. Thomas trained at Gulfport, Missi- sippi, and had his appendix removed before reporting to Norfolk for further training. His initial training was very intensive and included seamanship, navigation, ordnance, communications, gunnery and watch standing sea. He reported to the U.S. Naval Armed Guard Center in Brooklyn, New York, for duty in January 1945. He went aboard the SS VOLUNTEER, a merchant ship with 10 guns, as an Armed Guard Commander of 26 men. He was the only man aboard who had not been to sea. In March 1945, he sailed via Halifax to Liverpool, England, in a con- voy of 40 ships with no lights at night. After being in Liv- erpool one week, the convoy returned to New York May 20, 1945. Thomas received a message that Germany had surren- dered, but the U.S. was still at war with Japan. In June 1945, he sailed to Cuba on a lone ship, and arrived in Cien- fuegas, Cuba, on June 9, 1945. The ship took on 10,000 tons of sugar anti returned to New York June 26, 1945 Later on July 6, 1945, he was detached from the ship and after leave at home, reported to the Armed Guard Center in San Francisco, California. Japan surrendered Aug. 11, 1945, and although Jones had been assigned to a ship with an Armed Guard crew that was to sail to Japan, he was detached before the ship sailed. On October 5, 1945, he received orders to report to Port Director, New York, for further duty afloat the SS MOR- MACPORT. The ship was used for returning soldiers from overseas, It was a merchant-operated ship under the Navy Transportation Service, which maintained a military department aboard for communications, messing and quartering troops. The ship first returned with 2,500 men from Karachi, India. He recalls the trip through the Suez Canal en route to India as interesting. The second trip, brought back 2,500 men from Marseilles, France. In January 1946, he was detached from the ship's home port in Baltimore, just two days before it was scheduled to sail for the Philippines to gather more troops. That was the end of his sea duty. He ultimately was ordered back to the Fourth Naval District and home in Philadelphia. He per- formed various administrative assignments there until he was separated from active duty in September 1946, and went back to work for the Army Corps of Engineers until June 1974. He remained in the Naval Reserves for 20 years and retired as a Lt. Commander. Thomas' current address is 211 W. Wayne Avenue, Wayne, Pennsylvania 19087. WILFRED JORDAN


Wilfred "Bill" Jordan was born May 22, 1926, to Mili- an and Gladys Jordan in Keene, New Hampshire. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy June 16, 1943, and took boot training at Newport, Rhode Island, September 7, 1943. He completed two days of training on 20mm at Prices Neck AA Base in Newport, Rhode Island. On September 14, 1943, he reported to the Armed Guard Center in Brooklyn, New York. On October 10, 1943, he got his first ship, the SS WILLIAM MARCY, bound for Murmansk, Russia. He got his second ship April 3, 1944, the SS EDWARD B. HAINES, sailing for England. Bill was then transferred to the SS WILL ROG- ERS for the invasion of Normandy. On January 16, 1945, he was assigned to the SS STEPHEN B. ELKINS in Balti- more and sailed to the Philippines. He returned home, left the Armed Guard June 28, 1945, and transferred to the U.S. Naval NAD Base Hawthorne, Nevada, and then to the U.S. Naval Repair Station Base San Diego, California. He was discharged May 18, 1947. Bill received the American Campaign, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign, European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign, Bronze Star, Philippine Liberation, Good Conduct and World War II Victory awards. He returned home where he met and married his wife, Joyce, in 1948. They have three children, Stephen, Jerry and Sharon, and four grandchildren, Samantha, Stephen, Laura, Marisa. He is a retired machine tech and lives at 45 Anthony Circle, W. Swanzey, New Hampshire 03469.



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