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1943 U.S.S. Thorn, U.S.S. Turner, U.S.S. Bullard, & U.S.S. Kidd Ship Launching Pin Back Button
Item #d741
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This item is already sold1943 U.S.S. Thorn, U.S.S. Turner, U.S.S. Bullard, & U.S.S. Kidd Ship Launching Pin Back Button
U.S.S. Thorn   U.S.S. Turner   U.S.S. Bullard   U.S.S. Kidd   United States   U.S. Navy   Ship   Destroyer   Military   Sailor   World War II   WWII   War   Americana   Historic   Advertising   Celluloid   Pin Back Button
The picture shows a front and back view of this 1943 U.S.S. Thorn, U.S.S. Turner, U.S.S. Bullard, & U.S.S. Kidd Ship Launching Pin Back Button. This 4 ship launching badge is believed to have been saved by a shipyard worker. It was found in a Staten Island, New York attic with many others from dating from 1941 to 1944 when many ships were launched to do battle in World War II. They had been hidden away in that attic from the 1940s until 2008. The ships were launched from The Federal Shipbuilding & Dry Dock of Kearny, New Jersey.

This pinback button is imprinted in black on a white background. There is a tin back. It is marked on the front as follows:

U.S.S. THORN
U.S.S. TURNER
U.S.S. BULLARD
U.S.S. KIDD
LAUNCHING
FEBRUARY 28, 1943

WHITEHEAD & HOAG CO.
NEWARK, N.J.

The pin back button measures 2-1/16'' wide. It is in excellent condition with some light spotting and surface rusting on the back as pictured.

Below here, for reference, is some information on the U.S.S. Thorn, U.S.S. Turner, U.S.S. Bullard, and U.S.S. Kidd:

U.S.S. Thorn (DD-647)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Career

Laid down: 15 November 1942
Launched: 28 February 1943
Commissioned: 1 April 1943
Decommissioned: 6 May 1946
Struck: 1 July 1971
Fate: Sunk as target, 22 August 1974

General characteristics

Displacement: 1,630 tons (standard)
Length: 348 ft. 3 in. (106.1 m)
Beam: 36 ft. 1 in. (11.0 m)
Draft: 11 ft. 10 in. (3.6 m)
Propulsion: 50,000 shp (37 MW); 4 boilers; 2 propellers
Speed: 37.4 knots (69 km/h)
Range: 6,500 nautical miles at 12 kt (12,000 km at 22 km/h)
Complement: 16 officers, 260 enlisted
Armament: 4 - 5 in (127 mm)/38 caliber DP guns, 4 - 40 mm, 5 - 20 mm AA guns, 5 - 21 in. (53 cm) torpedo tubes (1x5; 5 Mark 15 torpedos), 6 depth charge projectors, 2 depth charge tracks.

U.S.S. Thorn (DD-647), a Gleaves class destroyer, was the first ship of the United States Navy to be named for Jonathan Thorn. Thorn was laid down on 15 November 1942 at Kearny, New Jersey, by the Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Co.; sponsored by Mrs. Beatrice Fox Palmer; launched on 28 February 1943; and commissioned on 1 April 1943 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, Lieutenant Commander Edward Brumby in command.

Atlantic service, May 1943 - January 1944
Following shakedown and trials out of Casco Bay, Maine, Thorn joined Destroyer Squadron 19 (DesRon 19). Between 28 May 1943 and 2 January 1944, the destroyer conducted four round trip convoy escort mission signs on the New York Norfolk Casablanca route, the first trip as part of Task Force 69 (TF 69) and the other three as part of TF 64. On her last convoy run, she escorted two oilers to Ponta Delgada, in the Azores, in company with the U.S.S. Stockton (DD-646), the first ships to enter the port under the terms of the new agreement between the Allies and the government of Portugal.

On 3 January 1944, the day after Thorn arrived back in New York harbor, the U.S.S. Turner (DD-648) blew up and sank in Ambrose Channel, 5,000 yards astern of Thorn. Calling away the ship's motor whaleboat, Thorn sent: a rescue party to try to recover survivors. Lt. James P. Drake, USNR, and Boatswain's Mate, First Class, E. Wells were awarded Navy and Marine Corps Medals for their bravery in the rescue of three Turner survivors, and three other men received commendation bars for their part in the operation.

Southwest Pacific service, February - September 1944
Late in January, Thorn sailed for the Pacific and transited the Panama Canal on the 29th. Ordered to report to relieve DesRon 1 in New Guinea waters, the destroyer and her sisters of Destroyer Division 37 (DesDiv 37) headed for the southwest Pacific. Thorn was detoured to Guadalcanal and Rendova Islands to escort a detached oiler group. She finally arrived at Milne Bay, New Guinea, on 29 February. Thorn moved directly from there to Cape Sudest where, on 4 March, the destroyer embarked troops and supplies of the Army's 7th Cavalry and immediately proceeded to Los Negros Island for the invasion of the Admiralties. In addition to making three additional escort trips between Cape Sudest and Seeadler Harbor, Thorn participated in two shore bombardments of Pityilu Island, conducted antisubmarine patrols north of the Admiralties, and acted as a fighter director vessel.

On 10 April, while making a practice torpedo run during preparations for forthcoming Allied landings at Hollandia, Thorn struck an uncharted reef. Damage to her screws and shafts forced the ship back to the West Coast for an overhaul. En route home, she escorted the U.S.S. Massachusetts (BB-59) to Bremerton, Washington. She subsequently escorted the U.S.S. Thetis Bay (CVE-90) from the Puget Sound Navy Yard to San Francisco, California, where she eventually arrived on 22 May. After completing her overhaul at the Hunter's Point Navy Yard, Thorn conducted refresher training and then escorted the U.S.S. Mississippi (BB-41) to Hawaii. She arrived at Pearl Harbor on 11 August. She then escorted the U.S.S. Maryland (BB-46) to Purvis Bay, Solomon Islands, where she joined escort carrier Task Unit 32.7.1 (TU32.7.1) and proceeded to the Palaus for the landings on 15 September. During this deployment as screen and plane guard, Thorn rescued the crews of three Grumman TBM Avenger torpedo planes which had ''ditched.''

Philippines service, October - December 1944
Detached from escort duty at the end of September, Thorn joined the U.S. Seventh Fleet at Manus Island, in the Admiralties, on 3 October. As American forces massed for the initial assaults on the Japanese occupied Philippine Islands, Thorn joined the fire support screen for TF 77. She entered Leyte Gulf on the night of the 18th and screened battleships and cruisers during their early shore bombardments. As Allied troops swarmed ashore two days later, the destroyer provided interdiction fire at Abuyog, south of the Leyte beaches, and patrolled the southern end of Leyte Gulf for the following week. At dawn on the 21st, Thorn's gunners opened fire on a Japanese Aichi D3A and sent the enemy dive bomber splashing into the sea near the transport area. On the 22nd, the destroyer and Portland (CA-33) splashed another enemy aircraft.

During the fierce night action at Surigao Strait, Thorn screened the American battleships as they mauled the Japanese force coming through the strait. Originally ordered to conduct a torpedo attack on the Japanese battle line, Thorn and her mates were recalled as the Japanese retreated back south through Surigao Strait. She then formed up with the lefthand flank of cruisers and destroyers and headed south to polish off the cripples from the Japanese force. The American ships came across one Japanese destroyer and smothered it with fire which summarily dispatched it to the depths. During her 17 salvoes, Thorn observed 12 hits.

On the evening of 25 October, Thorn's division received orders to lie to off Homonhon Island, on the east side of Leyte Gulf, to conduct a torpedo attack on a Japanese force expected from the eastward. The enemy, however, had already retired into the San Bernardino Strait that afternoon, and the American destroyer unit was recalled on the 26th. Ordered to Ulithi, Thorn departed Philippine waters to rejoin the U.S. Third Fleet in the Carolines, for duty with the Fast Carrier Task Force (then designated TF 38). From 6 to 24 November Thorn participated in TF 38's strikes against Japanese targets in the Philippines, screening and planeguarding for the fast carriers. She returned to Ulithi with TG 30.8 for duty with a logistics support group. She subsequently resumed planeguarding, this time standing by escort carriers. She assisted U.S.S. Cape Esperance (CVE-88) during Typhoon Cobra on 18 December. Following this heavy storm, which sank three destroyers, Thorn searched for survivors in the storm area.

Off Japan, January - October 1945
During the carrier strikes on Lingayen in early January 1945 and the subsequent carrier raids on Japanese shipping in the South China Sea, Thorn escorted a fast oiler group for replenishment evolutions with the aircraft carriers. While returning to the Carolines, via Leyte Gulf and the Mindoro Strait, Thorn rescued the crew of a downed TBM and the pilot of a crashed fighter before arriving at Ulithi on the 27th. The destroyer again screened oilers during the operations against Iwo Jima and also entered waters near the strategic island to screen heavy fire support units. On 21 February, Thorn and Ute (ATF-76) learned that U.S.S. Bismarck Sea (CVE-95) had been struck by two Japanese suicide planes, and they rushed to aid the stricken ship. However, when they searched the scene the escort carrier had already gone to the bottom, the victim of Japanese kamikazes.

Two days in Ulithi followed the ship's return, and, on 13 March, Thorn reformed with the U.S. 5th Fleet support group built around U.S.S. Detroit (CL-8) for operations. On 25 March, Thorn and U.S.S. Aylwin (DD-355) made depth charge attacks on a sonar contact and observed an oil slick after the last drop. They conducted a retirement search before rejoining the formation on the 26th, but could not verify that the contact had actually been a submarine. Thorn subsequently conducted four escort missions with the replenishment group, escorting oilers into Kerama Retto to fuel the fire support ships off Okinawa and making her first run on 1 April. On the second run, Thorn observed two enemy planes splashing into the sea, victims of combat air patrol (CAP) fighters and ship gunfire. On the third, a kamikaze hit Taluga (AO-62), two miles (3.7 km) astern, while another enemy suicide plane splashed alongside a nearby small patrol craft.

The destroyer then spent two weeks at Ulithi, replenishing for further operations with the logistics support group. She rejoined the oilers and supply ships at sea on 28 May. On 5 June, Thorn rode out her second major typhoon, steaming through the eye of the storm at 05:30. Two days later, she joined a group of four damaged escort aircraft carriers which were retiring to Guam.

On 4 July, soon after screening the CVEs out of the ''front lines'' for repairs, Thorn resumed work with the replenishment and support group and continued screening and supporting it through the surrender of Japan. During this period, she sank seven drifting mines. Following Japan's surrender, Thorn steamed off Tokyo Bay until 9 September, when the entire group entered Sagami Wan. The next day, the support group's base was established at the Yokosuka Naval Base, where Thorn remained through the end of September.

Streaming her homeward bound pennant, Thorn, in company with DesRon 19, steamed out of Tokyo Bay on 8 October and joined the U.S.S. Tennessee (BB-43) and U.S.S. California (BB-44) off Wakayama the following day. On 15 October, the group sailed on the first leg of their homeward bound voyage, subsequently stopping at Singapore, Colombo, and Cape Town. The destroyer eventually arrived in New York on 7 December 1945, via St. Helena and Ascension Islands in the Atlantic. After a month's overhaul, she proceeded to Charleston, South Carolina, where she was decommissioned and placed in reserve on 6 May 1946. Thorn lay in reserve through the 1950s and 1960s. Struck from the Navy list on 1 July 1971, the ship's hulk was authorized for use as a target and was sunk by aircraft from the U.S.S. Saratoga (CV-60) on 22 August 1974, approximately 75 miles (140 km) east of Jacksonville, Florida. Several veterans of Thorn were invited to observe the SinkEx, including George D. Bailey, who had worked on Thorn's construction before enlisting in the Navy, and then served on her throughout the war; he observed, ''I was at the birth and death of the old 647.'' Thorn received seven battle stars for her World War II service.


*************************************


USS Turner (DD-648)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Career

Laid down: 16 November 1942
Launched: 28 February 1943
Commissioned: 15 April 1943
Fate: Sank, 3 January 1944
Struck: 8 April 1944

General characteristics

Displacement: 1,630 tons
Length: 348 ft. 3 in. (106.1 m)
Beam: 36 ft. 1 in. (11.0 m)
Draft: 11 ft. 10 in. (3.6 m)
Propulsion: 50,000 shp (37 MW); 4 boilers; 2 propellers
Speed: 37.4 knots (69 km/h)
Range: 6,500 nautical miles at 12 kt (12,000 km at 22 km/h)
Complement: 16 officers, 260 enlisted
Armament: 4 - 5 in. (127 mm)/38 caliber DP guns, 4 - 40 mm, 7 - 20 mm AA guns, 5 - 21 in (53 cm) torpedo tubes (1x5; 5 Mark 15 torpedos),6 depth charge projectors, 2 depth charge tracks.

U.S.S. Turner (DD-648), a Gleaves class destroyer, was the second ship of the United States Navy to be named for Captain Daniel Turner. Turner was laid down on 16 November 1942 at Kearny, New Jersey, by the Federal Shipbuilding & Drydock Co.; launched on 28 February 1943; sponsored by Mrs. Louis E. Denfeld; and commissioned on 15 April 1943 at the New York Navy Yard, Lieutenant Commander Henry S. Wygant in command.

Convoy duty
Turner completed outfitting at the New York Navy Yard and then conducted shakedown and antisubmarine warfare training out of Casco Bay, Maine, until early June. On the 9th, she returned to New York to prepare for her first assignment, a three-day training cruise with the newly commissioned aircraft carrier, U.S.S. Bunker Hill (CV-17). Returning to New York on 22 June, she departed again the next day on her first real wartime assignment, service in the screen of a transatlantic convoy. First, she sailed with a portion of that convoy to Norfolk, Virginia, arriving that same day. On the 24th, the convoy departed Hampton Roads and shaped a course eastward across the Atlantic. After an uneventful voyage, she escorted her convoy into port at Casablanca, French Morocco, on 18 July. She departed with a return convoy on the 23rd and arrived back in New York on 9 August. Later that month, she was in the screen of a convoy to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, making a brief stop at Hampton Roads along the way. On the return trip, she rendezvoused with H.M.S. Victorious and accompanied the British carrier to Norfolk.

Anti-submarine duty
During the first two weeks of September, Turner conducted antisubmarine warfare (ASW) training at Casco Bay, Maine, and then returned to New York to prepare for her second transatlantic voyage. On 21 September, the destroyer headed south to Norfolk. She arrived there on the 23rd and, the following day, headed out across the Atlantic with her convoy. After an 18 day passage, during which she made one depth charge attack on a sound contact, Turner arrived at Casablanca on 12 October. Four days later, she departed again and headed for Gibraltar to join another convoy. The warship reached the strategic base on the 17th and, after two days in port, stood out to join the screen of convoy GUS-18.

On the night of 23 October, Turner was acting as an advance ASW escort for the convoy when she picked up an unidentified surface contact on her SG radar. At 19:43, about 11 inutes after the initial radar contact, Turner's lookouts made visual contact with what proved to be a German submarine running on the surface, decks awash, at about 500 yards (450 m) distance. Almost simultaneously, Turner came hard left and opened fire with her 5 inch, Bofors, and Oerlikon guns. During the next few seconds, the destroyer scored one 5 inch hit on the U-boat's conning tower as well as several 40 and 20 mm hits there and elsewhere. The submarine began to dive immediately and deprived Turner of any opportunity to ram her. However, while the U-boat made her dive, Turner began a depth charge attack. She fired two charges from her port K-gun battery, and both appeared to hit the water just above the submerged U-boat. Then, as the destroyer swung around above the U-boat, Turner rolled a single depth charge off her stern. Soon after the three depth charges exploded, Turner crewmen heard a fourth explosion, the shock from which caused the destroyer to lose power to her SG and SD radars, to the main battery, and to her sound gear. It took her at least 15 minutes to restore power entirely. Meanwhile, she began a search for evidence to corroborate a sinking or regain contact with the target. At about 20:17, she picked up another contact on the SG radar, located about 1,600 yards (1460 m) off the port beam. Turner came left and headed toward the contact. Not long thereafter, her bridge watch sighted an object lying low in the water. Those witnesses definitely identified the object as a submarine which appeared to be sinking by the stern. Unfortunately, Turner had to break contact with the object in order to avoid a collision with another of the convoy's escorts. By the time she was able to resume her search, the object had disappeared. Turner and Sturtevant (DE-239) remained in the area and conducted further searches for the submarine or for proof of her sinking but failed in both instances. All that can be said is she probably heavily damaged an enemy submarine and may have sunk her. No conclusive evidence exists to support the latter conclusion. The attacked sub may have been U-190.

Destruction
On the 24th, the two escorts rejoined the convoy, and the crossing continued peacefully. When the convoy divided itself into two segments according to destination on 4 November, Turner took station as one of the escorts for the Norfolk-bound portion. Two days later, she saw her charges safely into port and then departed to return to New York where she arrived on 7 November.

Following ten days in port, the warship conducted ASW exercises briefly at Casco Bay before returning to Norfolk to join another transatlantic convoy. She departed Norfolk with her third and final convoy on 23 November and saw the convoy safely across the Atlantic. On 1 January 1944, near the end of the return voyage, that convoy split into two parts according to destination as Turner's previous one had done. Turner joined the New York bound contingent and shaped a course for that port. She arrived off Ambrose Light late on 2 January and anchored.

Early the following morning, the destroyer suffered a series of shattering internal explosions. By 06:50, she took on a 16 degree starboard list; and explosions, mostly in the ammunition stowage areas, continued to stagger the stricken destroyer. Then, at about 07:50, a singularly violent explosion caused her to capsize and sink. The tip of her bow remained above water until about 08:27 when she disappeared completely taking with her 15 officers and 123 men. After nearby ships picked up the survivors of the sunken destroyer, the injured were taken to the hospital at Sandy Hook, New Jersey. A United States Coast Guard Sikorsky HNS-1 flown by Lt.Comdr. Frank A. Erickson — the first use of a helicopter in a life-saving role — flew two cases of blood plasma, lashed to the helicopter's floats, from New York to Sandy Hook. The plasma saved the lives of many of Turner's injured crewmen. Turner's name was stricken from the Navy list on 8 April 1944.


**************************************


USS Bullard (DD-660)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Career (US)

Namesake: William H. G. Bullard
Builder: Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Company, Kearny, New Jersey
Laid down: 16 October 1942
Launched: 28 February 1943
Commissioned: 9 April 1943
Decommissioned: 20 December 1946
Struck: 1 December 1972
Fate: Sold for scrap, 3 December 1973

General characteristics

Class and type: Fletcher class destroyer
Displacement: 2,050 tons
Length: 376 ft. 6 in. (114.7 m)
Beam: 39 ft. 8 in. (12.1 m)
Draft: 17 ft. 9 in. (5.4 m)
Propulsion: 60,000 shp (45 MW); 2 propellers
Speed: 35 knots (65 km/h)
Range: 6500 nmi. (12,000 km) at 15 kt
Complement: 329
Armament: 5 - 5 in./38 guns (127 mm), 4 - 40 mm AA guns, 4 - 20 mm AA guns, 10 - 21 in. torpedo tubes, 6 depth charge projectors, 2 depth charge tracks.

U.S.S. Bullard (DD-660) was a Fletcher class destroyer of the United States Navy, named for Rear Admiral William H. G. Bullard (1866 - 1927). Bullard was launched 28 February 1943 by Federal Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co., Kearny, N.J., sponsored by Mrs. H. G. Bullard, widow of Rear Admiral Bullard; and commissioned 9 April 1943, Commander G. R. Hartwig in command.

History
After conducting brief operations along the eastern seaboard and in the Caribbean, Bullard proceeded to the Pacific, arriving at Pearl Harbor 29 August 1943. With the exception of one voyage to California (10 September 1944 - 18 February 1945) she operated constantly in forward areas of the Pacific rendering fire support, plane guard, patrol, and radar picket services. She participated in:

the Wake Island raid (5 - 6 October 1943);
Rabaul strike (11 November);
the invasion of Tarawa (19 November - 1 December);
the occupation of Kwajalein and Majuro Atolls (22 January - March 1944);
Admiralty Islands landings (30 March - 13 April),
Hollandia operation (16 April - 4 May);
seizures of Saipan and of Guam (10 June - 17 August)
the Okinawa operation (15 March - 31 May 1945).

On 11 April 1945 during the Okinawa operation Bullard was slightly damaged by a Japanese kamikaze suicide plane. Repairs completed at Okinawa, she departed 31 May and steamed to Leyte. Departing Leyte Gulf, 1 July, Bullard next participated in the 3d Fleet raids against Japan (10 July - 15 August). After the cessation of hostilities Bullard remained in the Far East engaged in occupation duties until 10 November 1945 when she departed for San Pedro, Calif., arriving 3 December. She operated along the west coast during most of 1946 and then reported to San Diego for inactivation. Bullard was placed out of commission in reserve 20 December 1946. Bullard was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register 1 December 1972. She was sold 3 December 1973 and broken up for scrap. Bullard received nine battle stars for her World War II service.


*******************************


U.S.S. Kidd (DD-661)
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Career (US)

Namesake: Isaac C. Kidd
Builder: Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Company, Kearny, New Jersey
Laid down: 16 October 1942
Launched: 28 February 1943
Commissioned: 23 April 1943
Decommissioned: 19 June 1964
Struck: 1 December 1974
Fate: museum ship

General characteristics

Class and type: Fletcher class destroyer
Displacement: 2,050 tons
Length: 376 ft. 6 in. (114.7 m)
Beam: 39 ft. 8 in. (12.1 m)
Draft: 17 ft. 9 in. (5.4 m)
Propulsion: 60,000 shp (45 MW); 2 propellers
Speed: 35 knots (65 km/h)
Range: 6500 nmi. (12,000 km) at 15 kt
Complement: 329
Armament: 5 - 5 in./38 guns (127 mm), 10 - 40 mm AA guns, 7 - 20 mm AA guns, 10 - 21 in. (63 cm) torpedo tubes.

U.S.S. Kidd (DD-661), a Fletcher class destroyer, was the first ship of the United States Navy to be named for Rear Admiral Isaac C. Kidd, who died on the bridge of his flagship U.S.S. Arizona during the attack on Pearl Harbor. Admiral Kidd was the first U.S. Navy flag officer to die during World War II. U.S.S. Kidd (DD-661) was launched 28 February 1943 by Federal Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., Kearny, N.J.; sponsored by Mrs. Isaac C. Kidd, widow of Rear Admiral Kidd, and commissioned 23 April 1943, Commander Allan Roby in command.

During her initial cruise to the Brooklyn Naval Shipyards, she sailed across New York Harbor flying the skull and crossbones of the Jolly Roger on the foremast. Subsequently, during outfitting, her crew adopted the Pirate Captain William Kidd as their mascot, and commissioned a local artist to paint a pirate figure on the forward smokestack.

After shakedown out of Casco Bay, Maine in June, Kidd cruised in the Atlantic and Caribbean escorting large combatant vessels until she departed for the Pacific in August 1943 in company with battleships U.S.S. Alabama (BB-60) and U.S.S. South Dakota (BB-57). Arriving Pearl Harbor 17 September 1943, she got underway 29 September escorting aircraft carriers toward Wake Island for the heavy air attacks 6 October and returned to Pearl Harbor 11 October 1943.

Mid-October found Kidd underway with a formidable task force to strike Rabaul and to support the Bougainville landings. Upon reaching a strike position south of Rabaul on the morning of 11 November, the task force struck hard at Japanese positions on the island. Kidd dropped astern of her formation to rescue the crew of a plane from aircraft carrier U.S.S. Essex (CV-9) which had ditched as the American carrier launched a strike at Rabaul. A group of planes from an extremely heavy Japanese counterattacking force dove at the destroyer in an attempt to sink her while she was on her own. Striking back hard, she shot down three Japanese planes and successfully completed the rescue while skillfully maneuvering to dodge torpedoes and bombs. Cmdr. Roby, her commanding officer, received the Silver Star for gallantry during this action. The destroyer returned to Espiritu Santo 13 November.

Kidd next screened carriers making air attacks on Tarawa during the Gilbert Islands invasion from 19 to 23 November. On the 24th she spotted 15 low flying enemy bombers heading toward the heavy ships, gave warning, and shot down two Aichi D3A ''Val'' dive bombers. After Tarawa was secure, Kidd remained in the Gilbert Islands to support cleanup operations before returning to Pearl Harbor 9 December.

On 11 January 1944 Kidd sailed for the forward area, touched at Espiritu Santo, then sailed the next day for Funafuti, arriving 19 January. During the invasion of the Marshall Islands 29 January to 8 February, Kidd screened heavy ships and bombarded Roi and Wotje, then anchored at Kwajalein 26 February. From 20 March to 14 April Kidd guarded an airstrip under construction on Emirau and supported the occupation of Aitape and Hollandia in New Guinea 16 April to 7 May. She fought in the Marianas campaign 10 June to 8 July and helped soften up Guam for invasion 8 July to 10 August.

In need of repairs, Kidd sailed for Pearl Harbor, arriving 26 August 1944. On 15 September she departed Pearl, reached Eniwetok 26 September, and arrived at Manus on 3 October. There she became part of the giant Philippines invasion fleet and entered Leyte Gulf 20 October. Here she screened the initial landings and provided fire support for soldiers who fought to reconquer the island until she sailed 14 November for Humboldt Bay, New Guinea, arriving 19 November. On 9 December Kidd headed toward Mare Island Navy Yard for overhaul and moored at Mare Island on Christmas Day.

Kidd sailed 19 February 1945, to join Task Force 58 (TF 58) for the invasion of Okinawa. Trained and battlewise, Kidd played a key role during the first days of the Okinawa campaign, screening battleships, bombarding key targets ashore, rescuing downed pilots, sinking floating mines, providing early warning of raids, guarding heavily damaged U.S.S. Franklin (CV-13), and shooting down kamikazes.

While on picket station 11 April 1945, Kidd and her division mates, U.S.S. Black (DD-666), U.S.S. Bullard (DD-660), and U.S.S. Chauncey (DD-667), with the help of Combat Air Patrol, repelled three air raids. That afternoon a single enemy plane crashed into Kidd, killing 38 men and wounding 55. As the destroyer headed south to rejoin the task group, her effective fire drove off enemy planes trying to finish her. Stopping at Ulithi for temporary patchwork, she got underway 2 May for the West Coast, arriving Hunter's Point Naval Shipyard 25 May. To sum it all up, the ''Kidd'' saw heavy action in World War II, participating in nearly every important naval campaign in the Pacific, as she fought gallantly during the invasion of the Gilbert and Marshall Islands, the Phillipines at Leyte Gulf, and Okinawa. On 1 August 1945, Kidd sailed to Pearl Harbor and returned to San Diego, California 24 September 1945 for inactivation. She decommissioned 10 December 1946 and entered the Pacific Reserve Fleet.

Korean War
When North Korea attacked South Korea, the United States called up a portion of its reserve fleet. The Kidd was a part of that call and was recommissioned 28 March 1951, Lt. Cmdr. Robert E. Jeffery in command; sailed to the Western Pacific 18 June; and arrived Yokosuka, Japan 15 July. She joined Task Force 77 and patrolled off the Korean coast until 21 September when she sailed for the East Coast of Korea. From 21 October to 22 January 1952, Kidd bombarded targets of opportunity from Wan-Do Island to below Koesong. She then sailed with Destroyer Division 152 to San Diego, arriving 6 February 1952.

Kidd again got underway for Korea 8 September 1952; joined the screen of a hunter killer group near Kojo; and, in November, was back on bombardment missions off North Korea. Shortly thereafter, truce talks began. Kidd continued to patrol the Korean coast during negotiations. She departed the Far East 3 March 1953 via Midway and Pearl Harbor and arrived San Diego for overhaul 20 March.

Post Korean War
U.S.S. KIDD (Destroyer)
(U.S. National Historic Landmark)

The Kidd serves as part of the Louisiana Veterans Memorial.
Location: Mississippi River near Government St. and River Rd., Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Built/Founded: 1943
Architect: U.S. Navy
Designated as NHL: January 14, 1986
Added to NRHP: August 09, 1983
NRHP Reference Number: 83000502
Governing body: State

Once the overhaul was completed, Kidd proceeded to Long Beach, California on the 20 April 1953. The next day, the Swedish freighter Hainan rammed Kidd in Long Beach harbor requiring repairs that lasted until 11 May 1953. From late 1953 to late 1959 Kidd alternated West Pacific cruises with operations on the West Coast making stops at Pearl Harbor and various ports in Japan, Okinawa, Hong Kong, and the Philippines. She visited Sydney, Australia, 29 March 1958 and later that year patrolled the Taiwan Strait.

Kidd got underway 5 January 1960 for the East Coast via the Panama Canal, arriving Philadelphia, PA 25 January. From there she made Naval Reserve training cruises to various East Coast ports. She joined fleet operating forces during the Berlin Crisis in 1961. December 1961 found Kidd patrolling off the Dominican Republic in a ''show of force'' patrol to provide an element of security in the troubled Caribbean.

Kidd arrived Norfolk, Virginia 5 February 1962 and joined Task Force Alfa for Antisubmarine warfare (ASW) exercises. On 24 April she was assigned to the Naval Destroyer School at Newport, Rhode Island. After a cruise to the Caribbean, on 1 July 1962 she resumed Naval Reserve training. Kidd decommissioned 19 June 1964, entered the Atlantic Reserve Fleet, and berthed at the Philadelphia Shipyard.

The Navy set aside three Fletcher class ships for use as memorials; The U.S.S. Sullivans (DD-537), U.S.S. Cassin Young (DD-793), and U.S.S. Kidd. Louisiana congressman William Henson Moore selected Kidd to serve as a memorial for Louisiana World War II veterans. Kidd was towed from Philadelphia and arrived in Baton Rouge on 23 May 1982, where she was transferred to the Louisiana Naval War Memorial Commission. She is now on public view there as a museum vessel, and she conducts youth group overnight encampments.

The U.S.S. Kidd was never modernized and is the only destroyer to retain its World War II appearance; over the years, Kidd has been restored to her August 1945 configuration and armament, culminating on 3 July 1997, when her torpedo tubes were reloaded. The Kidd's special mooring in the Mississippi River is designed to cope with the annual change in river depth, which can be up to forty feet; for half the year she floats in the river, the other half of the year she is dry docked out of the water. The Sullivans in Buffalo, New York, Cassin Young in Boston, Massachusetts, and in Greece the H.N.S. Velos (D-16) former U.S.S. Charrette (DD-581) are the other Fletcher class museum ships. Kidd received eight battle stars for World War II service and four battle stars for Korean War service.

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1943 U.S.S. Thorn, U.S.S. Turner, U.S.S. Bullard, & U.S.S. Kidd Ship Launching Pin Back Button


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