Wake Island file photo

USS Wake Island

CountryUnited States
Ship ClassCasablanca-class Escort Carrier
Hull NumberCVE-65
BuilderKaiser Shipyards, Vancouver, Washington, United States
Laid Down6 Feb 1943
Launched15 Sep 1943
Commissioned7 Nov 1943
Decommissioned5 Apr 1946
Displacement7800 tons standard
Length512 feet
Beam65 feet
Draft22 feet
MachineryTwo 5-cylinder reciprocating Skinner Unaflow engines, four 285psi boilers, 2 shafts
Power Output9000 SHP
Speed19 knots
Range10,240nm at 15 knots
Crew916
Armament1x127mm 38cal dual purpose gun, 8x2x40mm Bofors guns, 28x20mm Oerlikon cannon
Aircraft28

Contributor: C. Peter Chen

USS Wake Island was commissioned into service in Nov 1943. She departed for the east coast of the United States in Jan 1944. Between Feb and May 1944, she made a round trip to Karachi, India. She spent most of May 1944 being overhauled. On 15 Jun, she set from Norfolk, Virginia, United States for a patrol in the Atlantic Ocean. En route back from her patrol area in the Gulf of Guinea, one of her TBM Avenger aircraft, piloted by Ensign Frederick L. Moore, sank German submarine U-543 between the Canary Islands and Cape Verde Islands; the sinking was not detected, however, and the carrier's air crew spent the following two weeks hunting for the submarine that had already been destroyed on the first day. On 2 Aug, Task Group 22.6 in which Wake Island was sailing with detected a German submarine and proceeded to attack; the group failed to sink the submarine, and during the attack destroyer escort Fiske was struck by the submarine and sunk at 1235 hours. Returning to the east coast of the United States, she conducted carrier qualification operations until 30 Oct. She returned to San Francisco, California, United States on 28 Nov and moored at Naval Air Station Alameda to take on two new air squadrons for delivery to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, United States. She then went on to transport supplies to Manus Island, Admiralty Islands, arriving on 27 Dec. She took on ammunition and other supplies at Kossol Roads, Palau Islands and departed on 1 Jan 1945 for the Luzon, Philippine Islands invasion. During the invasion, her aircraft performed scouting missions and provided shelter for survivors of friendly sunken ships. She was damaged by a bomb in Lingayen Gulf on 13 Jan, and retired from the front lines on 17 Jan for repairs. She sailed with Task Group 52.2 in Feb for the Iwo Jima operation, during which she performed spotting and ground attack operations. Between Mar and Apr, she provided support for the Okinawa operation, during which, on 3 Apr, she was struck by two or three Japanese special attack aircraft, causing damage but few casualties. Upon the completion of repairs at Guam, Mariana Islands, she returned to the Okinawa, Japan area in late May 1945. On 19 Jun 1945, she was removed from the front lines due to concerns that battle damage, particularly that received on 3 Apr 1945 when she was struck special attack aircraft, made USS Wake Island unsafe for combat operations. She performed aircraft ferry and cargo transport missions for the remainder of WW2. After the war, she remained in service until 1946.

Source: Wikipedia

Escort Carrier USS Wake Island (CVE-65) Interactive Map

USS Wake Island Operational Timeline

6 Feb 1943 The keel of escort carrier Wake Island was laid down in Vancouver, Washington, United States.
15 Sep 1943 Escort carrier Wake Island was launched, sponsored by the wife of Rear Admiral Frederick Sherman.
7 Nov 1943 USS Wake Island was commissioned into service with Captain Hames R. Tague in command.
27 Nov 1943 USS Wake Island departed Astoria, Oregon, United States.
28 Nov 1943 USS Wake Island anchored at Bremerton, Washington, United States to take on supplies.
6 Dec 1943 USS Wake Island departed waters off Bremerton, Washington, United States.
10 Dec 1943 USS Wake Island arrived at San Francisco, California, United States.
12 Dec 1943 USS Wake Island departed San Francisco, California, United States.
14 Dec 1943 USS Wake Island arrived at San Diego, California, United States.
11 Jan 1944 USS Wake Island departed San Diego, California, United States.
26 Jan 1944 USS Wake Island arrived at Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
14 Feb 1944 USS Wake Island departed Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
16 Feb 1944 USS Wake Island departed at New York, New York, United States.
1 Mar 1944 USS Wake Island arrived at Recife, Brazil.
29 Mar 1944 USS Wake Island arrived at Karachi, India.
3 Apr 1944 USS Wake Island departed Karachi, India.
12 May 1944 USS Wake Island arrived at Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
15 Jun 1944 USS Wake Island departed Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
2 Jul 1944 A TBM Avenger aircraft from USS Wake Island sank German submarine U-543 between the Canary and Cape Verde Islands.
11 Aug 1944 USS Wake Island detached from Allied convoy UC-32.
15 Aug 1944 USS Wake Island arrived at Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
25 Aug 1944 USS Wake Island completed her repairs at Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, Virginia, United States.
29 Aug 1944 USS Wake Island departed Norfolk, Virginia, United States for Quonset Point, Rhode Island, United States.
31 Aug 1944 USS Wake Island departed Quonset Point, Rhode Island, United States.
1 Nov 1944 USS Wake Island arrived at Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
11 Nov 1944 USS Wake Island departed Norfolk, Virginia, United States.
28 Nov 1944 USS Wake Island arrived at San Francisco, California, United States.
29 Nov 1944 USS Wake Island took on two new air squadrons and departed San Francisco, California, United States.
5 Dec 1944 USS Wake Island arrived at Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii and disembarked the aircraft she was ferrying.
15 Dec 1944 USS Wake Island departed Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii.
27 Dec 1944 USS Wake Island arrived at Manus Island, Admiralty Islands.
1 Jan 1945 USS Wake Island arrived at Kossol Roads, Palau Islands, loaded ammunition and other supplies, and departed for the Philippine Islands.
3 Jan 1945 USS Wake Island transited the Surigao Strait in the Philippine Islands.
4 Jan 1945 An aircraft from USS Wake detected a Japanese floatplane in the water off Panay Island, Philippine Islands and strafed the Japanese aircraft.
5 Jan 1945 USS Wake Island took on 19 survivors of sunken USS Ommaney Bay. In the afternoon, the task group she sailed with was subjected to heavy air attacks; her anti-aircraft gun crews claimed three Japanese aircraft shot down.
13 Jan 1945 USS Wake Island was attacked by two Japanese aircraft in Lingayen Gulf, Luzon, Philippine Islands; she shot down one, but suffered a bomb hit by the second.
17 Jan 1945 USS Wake Island was detached from Task Group 77.14.
23 Jan 1945 USS Wake Island arrived at Ulithi, Caroline Islands for repairs.
31 Jan 1945 USS Wake Island completed her repairs at Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
10 Feb 1945 USS Wake Island departed Ulithi, Caroline Islands with Task Group 52.2.
11 Feb 1945 USS Wake Island participated in an exercise in the Mariana Islands.
13 Feb 1945 USS Wake Island was designated the flagship of Task Unit 52.2.1.
14 Feb 1945 USS Wake Island set sail for Iwo Jima, Japan.
16 Feb 1945 USS Wake Island arrived 49 miles southwest of Iwo Jima, Japan and provided spotter aircraft for the battleship gun crews for the next three days.
22 Feb 1945 USS Wake Island was detached from Task Group 52.2 at Iwo Jima, Japan.
23 Feb 1945 USS Wake Island refueled east of Iwo Jima, Japan.
24 Feb 1945 USS Wake Island launched 55 spotting sorties 56 kilometers south of Iwo Jima, Japan; 205 rockets were fired on targets of opportunity.
5 Mar 1945 Rear Admiral Clifton Sprague commended the "efficiency, smoothness and good judgement" of USS Wake Island and the crew.
9 Mar 1945 USS Wake Island departed the Iwo Jima, Japan area.
14 Mar 1945 USS Wake Island arrived at Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
21 Mar 1945 USS Wake Island departed Ulithi, Caroline Islands.
25 Mar 1945 USS Wake Island arrived about 100 kilometers south of Okinawa, Japan.
3 Apr 1945 USS Wake Island was struck by two or three Japanese special attack aircraft, causing damage but little casualties.
6 Apr 1945 USS Wake Island departed Okinawa, Japan.
10 Apr 1945 USS Wake Island arrived at Apra Harbor, Guam, Mariana Islands for repairs.
20 May 1945 USS Wake Island completed her repairs at Apra Harbor, Guam, Mariana Islands.
21 May 1945 USS Wake Island departed Guam, Mariana Islands for Okinawa, Japan.
2 Jun 1945 USS Wake Island received supplies at Kaika Harbor, Kerama Retto, Ryukyu Islands, Japan.
6 Jun 1945 USS Wake Island returned to her front line position off Okinawa, Japan.
15 Jun 1945 Rear Admiral Calvin Durgin visited USS Wake Island at Okinawa, Japan and presented awards to 16 of her pilots.
16 Jun 1945 USS Wake Island was removed from the front lines at Okinawa, Japan.
17 Jun 1945 USS Wake Island received supplies at Kaika Harbor, Kerama Retto, Ryukyu Islands, Japan.
19 Jun 1945 USS Wake Island was detached from Task Group 32.1.
24 Jun 1945 USS Wake Island arrived at Apra Harbor, Guam, Mariana Islands. Personnel of her air group were transferred to Naval Air Base Agana.
25 Jun 1945 At Guam, Mariana Islands, USS Wake Island loaded 9 F6F Hellcat fighters, 24 F4U Corsair fighters, 11 Avenger torpedo bombers, and two Piper J-3 Cub observation aircraft for a transport mission to Okinawa, Japan.
17 Jul 1945 USS Wake Island arrived at Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii with 300 sacks of mail and 30 defective aircraft from Guam, Mariana Islands.
18 Jul 1945 USS Wake Island departed Pearl Harbor, US Territory of Hawaii after taking on 187 passengers.
25 Jul 1945 USS Wake Island arrived at San Diego, California, United States.
5 Nov 1945 The first carrier landing by a jet aircraft took place on the flight deck of USS Wake Island, off San Diego, California, United States.
5 Apr 1946 USS Wake Island was decommissioned from service.
17 Apr 1946 Escort carrier Wake Island was struck from the US Naval Register.
19 Apr 1946 Escort carrier Wake Island was sold for scrap to the Boston Metals Company of Baltimore, Maryland, United States.

Photographs

Thanksgiving holiday dinner menu aboard USS Wake Island, 25 Nov 1943USS Wake Island at rest, 1940s; note Camouflage Measure 33, Design 10AUSS Wake Island, 1940s; note Camouflage Measure 33, Design 10A and TBM Avenger and FM-2 Wildcat aircraft probably of VC-58Port side view of USS Wake Island, 9 Nov 1944
See all 6 photographs of Escort Carrier USS Wake Island (CVE-65)



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More on USS Wake Island
Event(s) Participated:
» Philippines Campaign, Phase 2
» Battle of Iwo Jima
» Okinawa Campaign


Escort Carrier USS Wake Island (CVE-65) Photo Gallery
Thanksgiving holiday dinner menu aboard USS Wake Island, 25 Nov 1943
See all 6 photographs of Escort Carrier USS Wake Island (CVE-65)



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