Other Sites:
Special Offer:


  Personal Experiences


USS Randolph CV-15


Benjamin Devin

1959(?) - 1963

Submitted by Sister

I didn't serve on the Randolph, my brother did. But we took a very memorable "Family Cruise" out of Norfolk. What made it so memorable was the fact that Neil, as my brother is known, changed his mind 3 times about having us come go on the cruise and as it turned out, he was on his way home to PA and my mother & dad, myself and a neighbor were on the way down. We were a family without a sailor! The captain invited us to dine at his table and took us under his wing, making for a very special tour! I was only 11 at the time, but it is very vivid in my mind yet. I wish we would hear about the Randolph on the "History Channel" Maybe she wasn't quite as famous as the Enterprise, but she certainly held up her end of the fighting!


Charles N Meyer

Service Dates=June 43- Oct-45

I am a Plank Owner of the USS Randolph During the shakedown the scuttle butt was that we were not going to return to New Port, but,instead were going to San Francisco. The crew started to refer to Captain Baker as Tokio Baker. When we were hit at Ulithi the Jason repair ship pulled along side to make repairs.It was recommened that we return to the States for repairs. Captain Baker said make the necessary repairs.At the movie shortly after Captain Baker said the we were not built to sit in port but we were going to go back and fight. He also said that we had to fill up the Bean locker,little did we know how true it was ,we loaded Beans for several days. Another event occured when we anchored in the Philippines and were resuppling . We had a Ammo.barage along side. Two US P-38s made a" mock straffing" run on us, one of the planes whipped stalled and came back and struck air planes sitting on the flight deck, it knocked several planes off the deck and killed several.Our guns started firing on the second , we refered to the event as the day the US AF declared war on the Navy, The remaining P-38 flew away.The barge moved away with no damage.About 35 years later, while talking to another member of the USPS he was tailing about the day that two P_38s hit a carrier laying at anchor in the Philippines. I said that I was on the carrier that was hit, he then said the he was the Chief Boatswain on the Ammo barge.

Sailor=Smith, Jay Randolph

Service Dates=June 1960 - May 1962

I came aboard via transfer from Sub Base NewLonConn, as FN, striking for MR.
Assigned "A" Div as MR. During my duty aboard Randolph worked in machine shop and was regularly promoted to MR2 at the time of my release to inactive reserve. Many great memories. Made it to many carribean countries.


Sailor=Paul McGoran
Service Dates=9-11-1967 to 12-16-1967

I joined the Navy in 1965 and served as a communications technician at various duty stations. In 1967 I was transferred to the USS Randolph as part of a communications detachment that would monitor Soviet activity in the Mediterranean. I believe this was the Randolph's last Med cruise, from September of 1967 until it sailed back to Norfolk in December of the same year.

I still remember exploring the ship, using the library, hitting port in Gibraltar, Naples and Barcelona. Planned port calls for Marseilles and Athens were cancelled while we tracked soviet submarines. I regret to say that I do not remember the names of any shipmates. It was, after all, only a three-month cruise. Subsequently, I returned to my duty station in Sidi Yahia, Morrocco, and was separated from active duty at the old Brooklyn Navy Yard in July of 1968.


Sailor=Francis O. Kopra

Service Dates=1944-1945

deceased 1993

David Kopra Relation=son

My father served as an electronics specialist on the Randolph in the South Pacific. While he never talked about his experiences during the war very much, he did provide enough for me to corroborate with my recent web research. I'm looking to contact anyone who might remember Frank from their service on the Randolph. If you remember him, or might remember him, please email me. Thanks very much.

Meredith Randolph Devendorf


I would like to contribute a bit of trivia for the memory of the Randolph. When my grandmother, Martha Jefferson Randolph, was a 17-year-old belle, she met a dashing young navy man named Jack Tate, who fell for her charms. Although struck by his appeal, she turned down his attentions and chose my grandfather's proposal instead. Later, the young man became Admiral Jackson Tate, and, in remembrance of youthful love, he had CVS-15 named "Randolph" in her honor.David K


Curtis Moss
Service Dates=Dec 1961-Sep65

Came aboard as a Hospitalman Apprentice awaiting school. I was placed in "G" Division. Requested that I be allowed to become a Gunner Mate. Gunner Worrell and Ltjg Davis assisted me. I was able to become a Gunner Mate striker in June 1962. Promoted to 3rd Class May 1963, promoted to second class January 1965. Relisted September 1965 and retired February 1982 as LCDR. Promoted to Warrent Gunner (Surface Warfare) August 1969 and LDO (DECK Ltjg)April 1976.
The Randolph motto was "Ran Do Can Do" and we did meet our Motto. Wonderful first tour and a proud Lady of the Lineop

Sailor=Jessie Claude Doolin
Service Dates=1944-1945
RName=John Kim

I did not serve but my Grandaddy did on the USS Randolph In
WWII 1944-1945.He did not like to talk about the war very often but he did
tell me a few stories that were interesting to a wide eyed young boy that I
would like to share with you.He told me about a time he was in the galley
sitting in a booth writing a letter home.He got up to go get some more
coffee and when he returned some other sailors had taken his seat.He went to
sit somewhere else and moments later a kamikazi hit the ship right where he
had been sitting killing all the sailors that were sitting there.Though he
didnt talk about it much he always said it was pure luck and divine
intervention.He also told me that his job was shooting an anti aircraft
gun.He told of a time when they were under attack from japanese planes when
one plane killed the boy that fed his ammunition into his gun. The boy was
18 yrs. and my Grandaddy said he was shooting at japanese planes and looked
over and the boy was laying there dead.Also said they had shot down a
japanese plane and the pilot bailed out and was in the water alive.They
picked the japanese pilot up and brought him on board and when his feet hit
the deck my Grandaddy hit him in the head and killed him with the butt of
his rifle.He said he was shipped back to the states and it was investigated
but they did not court martial him and he was sent back into service.His
name was Jessis Claude Doolin.Passed away on Jan. 1st 1988.Anyone that
remembers any of these events or remembers him please call or e mail me as I
would find it very interesting to talk to someone who served with him and
knew him before I was born or might could shed some more light on these
events.He also told me before he died that the navy owed him one more metal that he never received and told me I should try to get it for a family
heirloom after he died.Just wanted to share some of these stories from the Randolph with you. Thank You.


Russell Mehls
Service Dates=December 1962 - June 1963

This was my first assignment out of recruit training. I did get alot of experience in E Division working with electrical circuits, distribution switchboards and controllers. Although it was an old birdfarm with ASW aircraft, it was a great experience. I was sad to hear that it had been dismantled. I often tell friends that if they visit NYC and board the USS Intrepid (CVS-11),that carrier is basically the identical ship as CVS-15



Richard Sanderson
Service Dates=1 aug58/ 6june1960

I met my mother,father,and two brothers at the gangway of the Randolph then cvs15.She (the ship)proudly displayed the largest number of "E"awards then won by any ship in the fleet.Old Smoke
Bomb Stream was the captain.It was the day Randolph and her crew proudly invited the crew's family aboard for a cruise.My father was an aeronautical engineer designing aircraft for the 2nd world war.He had never seen an aircraft launched and was overwhelmed.We ate chow on the crews mess deck.
A shipmate,Jack Kearney,from New york joined us.That evening my folks invited Jack for dinner at one of Norfolk's fine restraunts.
I was very young then and came aboard with a lot of emotional bagage.I will be forever greatful to "Randoo Candoo for helping guide my young life.
My nick name was Zilch.

Sailor=william smith
Service Dates=1960-61

I served on the old girl when we picked up John Glenn with his
trip around the world in his space capsule. I was in the cpo mess waiting
to go to radioman school and i brought him his food tray from the chief
petty officers mess hall.

ĘSailor=Walter Frenger
Service Dates=1943-1955
RName=Russell Carlton
Relation=Son in Law
R. Email=carltonbrk_04@peoplepc.com
My Dad in Law was a Flyboy aboard the Randolph. He piloted a SB2C Helldiver on many missions over Japan. While in Ulithi the men were relaxing on the flightdeck watching a movie one evening. Dad said there was an explosion knocking him off his feet and he could see a huge fireball arising from the bow of the ship.

Ship Name=USS Randolph.
Sailor=V.J.Verdolini RM2/c
Service Dates=June1943-August 1951

I had transferred from CVE60, USS Guadalcanal and was assigned Randolph in July 44, as pre commissioning.While aboard Randolph(Plankowner), on March 11, 1945, I got off watch at 2000 hours in Radio Central. I would normally just come down from the Island and walk on the Stbd side, back to Radio3, which was my battlestation, and I also slept there, since it was cooler. As I stepped onto the flight deck, I heard the song Polonaise, coming from the movie on the hangar deck. I decided to go see what the movie was about. I stood at rear of the movie, until 2007 when it ended. As I turned to head back aft on the hangar deck, to get to Radio3, which was just under the hangar deck, when all I saw was a big white flash, which knocked me down, but was unhurt,except for flash burn, but next morning, since eyes were all swollen, the pharmacist mate at sick bay said the flash burn would be better in a day, and it was. When the fires were out, we could not even ID the guys in Rdo3, probably airdales who used to come in there to chat.No radiomen were in there, when Francis hit us. So, luckily I heard a song, I liked, and it saved my life.

Sailor=Charles Good Service Dates=1944- Unsure
Address=4517 Baybrook Drive
RName=Chris Good
R. Email=ceg06d@fsu.edu
TextAreaName=My grandfather, Charles Good, never really told many stories about what happened during WWII, but I was the lucky one in the family. I was able to get a couple of stories out of him before he past away last year. He told me about him sitting of the coast of Japan waiting to attack and about the kamikaze. I can't really remember any specific information about because it was awhile ago when we had talked about it. If anybody remembers Charles Good please feel free to email me. My family and I would like to talk with anybody with information. Thanks for the help.


Monthly Features:
Article of the Month

Photograph of the Month

This Month in Naval History

Special Areas:

Submit A Personal experience

Search the Ships Roster