O'Neill DE-188

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This Month in Naval History
O'Neill DE-188

O'Neill
(DE-188: dp. 1,620, 1. 306'; b. 36'7"; dr. 11'8" s. 21 k.; cpl. 216; a. 3 3", 6 40mm; cl. Cannon3

O'Neill (DE-188) was laid down 26 August 1943 by Federal SB and Drydock Corp., Newark, N. J., Launched 14 November 1943; sponsored by Mrs. W. T. O'Neill, commissioned 6 December 1943, Lt. David S. Bill, Jr. in command.

Following a shakedown cruise to Bermuda, O'Neill reported to the U. S. Atlantic Fleet for duty. Her first major assignment was a convoy operation from New York to the United Kingdom. This was followed by a series of similar operations, shepherding convoys between U. S. ports and: Casablanea, French Moroceo, Bizerte, Tunisia, and Belfast North Ireland. All Atlantic crossings were made without the loss of a single vessel.

On October 31st O'Neill transited the Panama Canal and reported to the Pacific Fleet. Arriving in the forward area in December, she joined the Third Fleet under Admiral Halsey and took part in the operations which culminated in the reeonquest of Luzon.

In February 1945, O'Neill became a unit of the 5th Fleet under Admiral Spruanee, and served as an escort for the transports which landed the Third Marine Division at Iwo Jima. This landing took place on February 24th, and thereafter O'Neill served in the anti-Submarine screen around the island.

After a passage to Milne Bay, New Guinea, O'Neill joined the force assigned for the invasion of Okinawa. The initial landings were made on 1 April. In the prolonged fight for the island, she served almost continuously for 60 days on

ASW picket duty- shooting down a Japanese twin-engined bomber on 25 May, and being hit by a suicide plane on the 26th. On the latter occasion two men were killed and 17 were wounded aboard the ship.

Shortly after a change of command on 16 June, O'Neill returned to San Pedro, Calif. for repairs of battle damage and major overhaul. While in San Pedro the war in the Pacific eame to an end. On completion of overhaul, she again transited the Panama Canal, returning to the Atlantic Fleet.

O'Neill was placed out of commission in reserve on 2 May 1946 and berthed at Green Cove Springs, Fla., until 23 October ;950, at which time she was transfered to the Netherlands under the Mutual Defense Assistanee Program. O'A'eill was struck from the U. S. Naval Register on 20 December 1950. After operating as Duboir (F809) she was returned to the USN in December 1967, and was sold to a scrap yard in West Germany in February 1968.

 

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