BOB'S MINESWEEPER SITE

AM Minesweepers

USS Staff-AM114, USS Towhee-AM388, USS Tanager-AM385, USS Tercel-AM386

Mediterranean moored as part of the 6th Fleet at Marseilles, France in August 1953.

USS TANAGER AM385

Profile: My name is Robert J. Gerety and in April 1953, I was assigned to serve aboard the Minesweeper, Tanager AM385, docked in Charleston, South Carolina. Within two weeks we were on our way to the Mediterranean an part of the Sixth Fleet. It took almost 12 days to cross the Atlantic and it was so rough that 122 out 125 officers and crew were seasick. Our first port was Tangiers in North Africa and I was in awe, almost like being in the Arabian Nights. Some of the many other places we went to were the Isles of Sardinia & Malta; Athens; Salonikas in Greece; Seville, Spain; Marseilles; Cannes; Nice in France; Naples,Pompeii; Livono, Salerno in Italy and Messina, Sicily. When I was in Naples I had the opportunity to visit the ancient city of Pompei which is not far from away. It was a breath taking experience. While in port we were welcome by various USO's in both France and Italy. During the time we spent in the Mediterranean in cooridation with first the Greek Naval and later the French Navy we performed joint minesweeping operations. When we returned to the United States we visited Havana, Cuba when Batista was still in power. We also went to Savannah, Georgia, Fort Lauderdale, Key West and Panama City, Florida. In July 1954, I was discharged from the United States Navy Reserve after 4 yrs of both active & inactive service.

USS TANAGER AM385

Minesweepers are named after birds. Any of the numerous American, passerine birds. The brightly colored males are unmusical and inhabit woodlands and I served on this one from April 1953 to August 1954.
(AM-385: dp. 890; l. 221'1"; b. 32'2' ; dr. 10'9" (mean); s. 18.1 k. (tl.); cpl. 117; a. 1 3"; cl. Auk) The second Tanager (AM-385) was laid down at Lorain, Ohio, on 29 March 1944 by the American Shipbuilding Co.; launched on 9 December 1944; sponsored by Mrs. Thomas Slingluff; and commissioned on 28 July 1945, Lt. Comdr. Oscar B. Lundgren, USNR, in command. Tanager steamed via the St. Lawrence River to Boston, Mass., in late July and early August. In October, she moved south to the Naval Amphibious Base at Little Creek, Va., for shakedown training and minesweeping exercises in the Chesapeake Bay area. For almost six years, Tanager operated with the 2d Fleet along the eastern seaboard and in the Caribbean area. She conducted minesweeping exercises and supported the training efforts of the Mine Warfare School at Yorktown, Va. On three occasions-once each in 1948, 1950, and 1951-she did tours of duty with the Naval Mine Countermeasures Station, located at Panama City, Fla. On 2 September 1951, she departed Charleston, S.C., for the Mediterranean Sea. While she was deployed with the 6th Fleet, she conducted more minesweeping exercises and visited many of the famous ports in the area. Among those were Mers-el-Kebir, Gibraltar, Naples, Monaco, Cannes, Venice, Malta, and Genoa. In February 1952, Tanager returned to Charleston and resumed operations with the 2d Fleet. After repairs at Charleston and a voyage to Norfolk and back, the minesweeper began her second Mediterranean deployment in April 1953. During that cruise, she added some new ports-of-call to her itinerary, notably Tangier, Palermo, Pireaus (Port of Athens) Marseille, Leghorn, Marseille, Malta, Sardina, Cannes, Salonika, and Seville. She also participated in a number of minesweeping exercises with other units of the 6th Fleet. Tanager re-entered Charleston on 26 October 1953. Following minesweeping exercises along the southeastern coast of the United States and in the Caribbean, she entered the yard at Savannah Machine & Foundry Co. on 29 June 1954 for repairs. On 23 September, the minesweeper departed Savannah and headed for Beaumont, Tex. She arrived on the 28th and entered the drydock the same day. She was refloated on 8 October and towed to the naval station at Orange, Tex. Two months later, on 10 December 1954, Tanager was decommissioned and berthed there with the Atlantic Reserve Fleet. On 7 February 1955, the minesweeper was redesignated MSF-385. On 4 October 1963, Tanager was transferred to the Coast Guard for use as a training cutter. Her name was struck from the Navy list on 1 November 1963, and she was commissioned in the Coast Guard as Tanager (WTR-885) on 16 July 1964. She was decommissioned once more on 1 February 1972; and, on 15 November, she was sold to Mr. William A. Hardesty of Seattle, Wash.

 

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Disclaimer: This site is a place where interested parties exchange information concerning the USS Tanager AM385 and other minesweepers. Such information is not guaranteed in any way whatsoever as to its completeness or accuracy, by any source or any person. The opinions expressed are subject to change without notice. In addition this site has no affiliation with the any of the various links shown on this page and are only for the convenience of the web page visitors.
Updated 04/21/2000

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