|Ship Class||Casablanca-class Escort Carrier|
|Builder||Kaiser Shipbuilding Co., Inc., Vancouver, WA|
|Laid Down||27 Sep 1943|
|Launched||22 Dec 1943|
|Commissioned||3 Feb 1944|
|Decommissioned||12 Dec 1946|
|Displacement||7,800 tons standard; 10,400 tons full|
|Machinery||Four boilers with two screws|
|Armament||1x5-in Anti-aircraft, 8x40mm, 12x20mm|
Contributor: C. Peter Chen
ww2dbaseSavo Island was originally planned as the aircraft escort vessel Kaita bay, but was reclassified on 15 Jul 1943 as a Casablanca-class escort carrier. She was commissioned in Feb 1944 with Captain C. E. Eckstrom in command. She held her shakedown cruise off San Diego, California, and then sailed twice for the South Pacific with replacement aircraft. Her first combat assignment was during the Palaus campaign against the island of Peleliu, where her aircraft strafed Japanese positions as United States Marines landed. In Oct 1944, her aircraft provided aerial support during the Leyte campaign in the Philippine Islands. In the morning of 25 Oct 1944, her escorts came under fire when Admiral Takeo Kurita's powerful surface fleet reached the relatively unprotected American escort carriers. Despite intense air pressure, the Japanese scored a tactical victory at the Battle off Samar, but Savo Island emerged unharmed. In Nov 1944, she operated further off Leyte to protect the convoy lanes leading to the Philippines. Her aircraft supported the landings at Mindanao in Dec 1944 then Lingayen Gulf landings at Luzon in Jan 1945. During the latter action, a special attack suicide aircraft grazed her flight deck, giving her crew a brief scare. In Mar and Apr 1945, she provided air support for actions against Kerama Eetto, Okinawa, and Sakishima Gunto during the Okinawa campaign. On 29 April, Savo Island returned to San Diego for an overhaul. She emerged from the shipyard shortly before the Japanese surrender. After the war, she supported the occupation of northern Japan and performed as one of the Magic Carpet transports that brought American servicemen back to the United States. Her final Magic Carpet duty ended at Seattle on 14 Jan 1946, and she was inactivated at Boston on 16 Mar. She was formally decommissioned from service on 12 Dec 1946. She was sold to Comarket, Inc. for civilian service and was broken up in Hong Kong in Jun 1960.
Last Major Revision: Feb 2007
Savo Island Operational Timeline
|3 Feb 1944Â||Savo Island was commissioned into service.|
|12 Dec 1946Â||Savo Island was decommissioned from service.|
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