The Splendid Five: A True Story About The Splinter Fleet In The Pacific During Wwii
Publish Date: 2000-09-05
Author: Wesley Hall
The Splendid Five is a true story about five wooden subchasers participating in island invasions in the Pacific during WWII. The U. S. Navy converted these small ships to LCC's in the summer of 1944 in New Caledonia and turned them over to General Douglas MacArthur for his island-hopping campaign. This mighty armada, variously called The Splinter Fleet and The Donald Duck Navy (because of the Walt Disney logos on the bridge of each), participated in the invasions of Peleliu Island, in the mysterious Palaus, Leyte Gulf (the first invasion of the Philippines), and Lingayen Gulf, on the island of Luzon.Life aboard a subchaser was not at all like life aboard an aircraft carrier, battlewagon, cruiser, tincan, DE, PC, pigboat, or, for that matter, PT-boat. It was unique. And yet its story has never been told. The rumor was that only volunteers would be assigned to these coffins, and that the maximum length of service aboard one of them would be nine months. In the case of the SC-995 I was the only volunteer aboard, and no one, even big John Leavy, who had many physical ailments, including open sores had chronic seasickness, was ever rotated to the States.