This page is an aggregate of all of the individual journal posts. I have a year’s worth that are slowly getting transcribed and added. They are ordered from the start of the journal to the end—the same order I am transcribing them in.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, April 1, 1945

    By daybreak we could see our destination (Okinawa Islands) 300 miles from the Japanese mainland. We refueled, took on water, and was anchored in the early afternoon. 0400 general quarters sounded Japanese air attacks. This lasted off and on until the full of dawn. Again at dusk GQ sounded. Things were pretty hot for a while.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, April 2, 1945

    We again had three air attacks before dawn. So far I have done very little shooting. They seem to fire on bigger ships. Probably because we are pretty hard to hit. At dusk brought the usual air raids. They are getting to be like regular routine.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, April 3, 1945

    This morning’s raids were a little more exciting. Two Jap planes (Tony) came in on us. Ack-ack drove one of them away. The second one being hit, saw he was going down anyway, so started a suicide dive at us. Believe me I gave him all I could get out of the old gun. The closer he got, the faster and harder we hit him. Not more than a second too soon he noticed a big LST to the left of him. He turned and in a split second hit her amid-ships (causing 17 casualties). I don’t know why I was shaking, because I wasn’t scared. I wasn’t the only one, so I feel better. At dusk, we had the usual raids. Sometimes you can see what you are shooting at, and other times you just guess.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, April 4, 1945

    At daybreak we had a short GQ, after which we got under way. We arrived at the biggest of the [Okinawa] Islands. Fire sweeps and one gunboat started the first sweeping. The group got five or six mines all day. We could see shore batteries, but we were never fired upon, to our amazement. At dusk we set out to sea for safety during the night.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, April 5, 1945

    We returned and started sweeping at the crack of dawn. Again we received no opposition, and cut several mines. Other than one or two sweeps having a little trouble with their gear, we had a calm day.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, April 6, 1945

    We returned from sea during the early morning, to again try our luck. This time we are sweeping dangerously close to the main Island. Our troops sound as though they are really mopping up. We are close enough to see troops along the beach. On our final lap around for the evening, the sweep gear on YMS-427 wasn’t working right, so we switched places. Just as we made our turn, the shore batteries turned loose on us. They’d had too big of guns for us, so all we could do is make a run for it. They nearly hit us several times. YMS-427 wasn’t so lucky—they were hit by the port fifty, killing two men and one officer. If we hadn’t of switched places with them on the last lap, I may not be here today. I have the same station on this ship. Call it luck if you want, but I think that’s one I owe the Father in Heaven himself.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, April 7, 1945

    We took a little time out this morning to raise the acoustic-hammer. After, we joined in the sweep formation. Everything went well today. No casualties or etcetera. There were quite a number of mines cut loose and destroyed.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, April 8, 1945

    We arrived as usual to start an early sweep. Our PGM-18 escort was following along as usual, when she hit a mine amid-ships. Upon seeing this, YMS-103 went back to help. As she drew up close she hit a mine, blowing her bow clean off. Again the YMS and PGM exploded, causing much more damage, The PGM capsized and sank very shortly. The YMS stayed afloat. Survivor boats were sent out from AM-15, picking up sixteen—or half of the crew of the YMS-103—and nineteen out of sixty-five from PGM-18. We waited until things quieted down, then resumed our sweeping. Along about quitting time, YMS-92 tried to dodge three mines, but hit the last one with her fantail, blowing it clear off. They saw it coming and was able to save every man. Thank the Lord for that.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, April 9, 1945

    There were several new YMS’s added to our group today. There were no casualties through the day. Three times, small craft was fired upon from the beach. Our cruisers soon quieted each attack. We were lucky, for each time we were either close to or under cover of the cruiser USS Pensacola [CA-24] (heavy). We took to sea again in the evening for safety.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, April 10, 1945

    Things went along extra smooth today. We finished sweeping early, again with no casualties. In the late morning we invaded the first island we swept. It is a very small one, so should be secured by dark. This gives us the opening to the channel. We started shortly after noon, back to anchorage. We are getting low on fuel and chow. Things were dark and quiet when we arrived. We just missed the evening air raids. Tomorrow we are going to try to send some mail off, if possible. We don’t know as yet when we will get any mail. It sure would help to get some soon. The men are pretty well tired out, and their nerves are on edge. I do not blame them after some of the things we have seen. We have just been plain lucky, that is all.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, April 11, 1945

    We anchored all night, at the main anchorage. The night was cloudy and raining, so we had no air attacks. We received fuel and water from an LST. In the early afternoon we got chow from the USS Terror [CM-5], flagship for minesweepers. We had one air raid after another for the latter part of the evening. We were to leave anchorage at 1800, and minesweep the following morning, but our orders were changed to give us a chance for repairs.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, April 12, 1945

    We pulled up along side of [USS Mona Island] ARG-9 for repairs, small stores and etc. 1430 air raids began. Several Jap planes were shot down. They came in small patrols. Several ships were hit by suicide planes. Two more raids were staged around dusk. We were anchored outside the nets where the attacks were being made. Things quieted down very shortly. At 2330 we got underway to the main islands we swept once before.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, April 13, 1945

    We anchored near the beach that is secured. We were allowed to sleep all morning. We sure needed the rest. Finally, we got a movie from YMS-283. It was shown in the galley several times. “Honeymoon Lodge”. At 1815 we returned to the safety of the sea for the night. Things were quiet all night, except for the battling ashore. The sky is always lit up from flares and ack-ack. It beats any 4th of July celebration you have seen.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, April 14, 1945

    We are anchored again at the same place as yesterday, this morning, shortly after daylight. The fellows took turns diving under the fantail, to cut a five-inch line loose that was caught around the port shaft. We heard news that the war was over in Europe today, and Russia had declared war on Japan. If this is straight dope, it is the best news we have heard in a long time. Our biggest worry now is to stay alive. The way the Japs send suicide planes and boats everyday, things look pretty slim at times. Last night, suicide boats were sent out, but shot up before they done any damage. They are a very fast boat, making them all the more deadly. We set out to sea at 1800 with two or more small ships. At dusk air raids started. The ship ahead of us was busy for a few minutes. We were just a small distance away, but was never attacked. Things quieted down shortly, and we returned to our card games.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, April 15, 1945

    We swept a small patch by the lines ashore, in order for two BB’s and three CVL’s to plaster the beach. We anchored in the same spot until dusk started setting in. Air raids as usual. They overlooked small craft this time, because there was so much big stuff around. Nevertheless, they were close enough. I guess during an air raid is a funny time to laugh, but I did just the same. Doc and a few others are so scared, they don’t know which way to turn. They try to hide, but there is no place to hide. In fact this isn’t much of a ship, let alone having a place to hide. The water and weather have been perfect the last few days. If this Jap weather stays like this all the time, it would be hard to beat. But it doesn’t, it is generally worse than Frisco [San Francisco].

  • Journal Entry, Monday, April 16, 1945

    We only swept for one hour this morning, then anchored in our same place. We were able to get a little, much-needed rest, exception of a few hours—we had to get some work done. The mail is supposed to be in tomorrow. Everyone is really looking forward to it. Everyone stood ready for air raids this evening. So far nothing has happened. We could use a few calm days for a change. A person’s nerves are on edge constantly. So many narrow escapes, and etcetera are nerve-wracking. That holds true mostly with the older fellows, whereas the younger ones sing and joke at any time, air raids or not. As for myself, be merry while you can. We may all be dead tomorrow.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, April 17, 1945

    We had an air raid about 0300. One plane kept circling, but never dived on us. It soon quieted down, and we hit our sacks again. We swept early this morning, in very close to the beach. The big craft was firing over our heads. I believe everyone had a terrific headache because of it. We went back to our same spot and anchored. We stayed all night for the first time here. At 2030, GQ sounded. You could hear the planes, but not see them. They got uneasily close at times. We did not fire, because I don’t think they saw us—it was too dark. No mail today. Maybe tomorrow. We have learned not to build up too big of hopes. It is generally always a false alarm.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, April 18, 1945

    It was condition “red”, and is as far as that goes always meaning Jap planes are in the vicinity—but don’t shoot, because we have planes also, unless fired at, or attacked. During the day we laid dan buoys to show where reefs are located. We had orders to go to sea, over night. The sea is getting rougher by the minute. A calm sea always breaks up with bad weather. The mail ship was in, but we missed it. However they say tomorrow will be different. I don’t believe it until I see it. You can hear, and see action twenty-four hours a day. We have gotten so used to it, we never sound GQ. unless they are over-head, or attacking our small group.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, April 19, 1945

    We swept for a while this morning, just in case the Japs decided to lay a few over night. We anchored in the rest of the day. It was raining the heaviest I have seen it rain in a long time. It is good to see a rainstorm once in a while. The steering cable was on the bum, so we spent the rest of the day fixing it.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, April 20, 1945

    Things went along pretty smooth today. Just done a few things that had to be done. In the afternoon we started for the main anchorage. At 0630 general quarters sounded. It was the longest one we have had so far. It lasted until 2240. We all expected another one very shortly, but to our surprise, we were left alone. We were told today we were recommended for a citation, for our splendid work in sweeping the harbor. Also because of so many casualties, yet we carried on, until we were finished, as it stated. I am as pleased about it as the rest of the fellows.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, April 21, 1945

    We re-fueled, and took on water and provisions most of the day. There was a short GQ. at dusk. We received our citations today, and also have a hunch we are going farther north.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, April 22, 1945

    We are still at anchorage, and hope to stay here for some time, if we can. Peters and I went aboard the Signet to visit, the majority of the day. The fellows are all in good shape, except for a few close ones they had. They had it pretty rough also. At dusk GQ sounded, lasting about two hours. A suicide plane sunk a destroyer, one AM-65 was hit, causing six casualties. Several planes were shot down. There was probably more we don’t know any thing about.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, April 23, 1945

    This morning early, we got under way for Noha Island. The opposite side we swept. We swept all day, very close to the anchorage. More or less a safety sweep. It rained hard all day. Especially hard, when we had to stand out in it. We anchored in, in the early afternoon. There were a great many ships anchored. It looked like the whole Navy in it’s self. The beach is secured all along the anchorage. Already we are using the airport, and have radar, and equipment set up. it shouldn’t be long now. It is too cloudy and stormy for air raids tonight.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, April 24, 1945

    We started sweeping early again, in the same manner as before, just security sweeping. Army planes were in today. It should not be long now. The fields must be in good shape to land (B-29’s). Tokyo can look for plenty of trouble now. We borrowed a movie off another ship. “Nine Girls”, it was very good. After so long any show is good. We expect force air raids again soon. So far we are lucky, and not disturbed. A little peace and quiet, will help calm our nerves down a little.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, April 25, 1945

    I spoke a little too soon. We had a two-hour GQ. in the middle of the night. We spent all day sweeping. If all sweeping was like this, it would not be bad.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, April 26, 1945

    We swept part of the day. In the late of the morning we left for the second anchorage we were in. We re-fuelled, and took on water, from a tanker. There were two GQ’s. during the latter part of the evening. We anchored in all night.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, April 27, 1945

    By daylight we were taking on stores, from an A.K.N. We received the biggest variety, we have had since we left Pearl. A mail boat came along side. We got mail to distribute to other YMS, but none for our selves. By noon we were well on our way to do more sweeping, in a place we have never been before. We joined the squadron, gave them their mail, and went to sea for the evening. We had two GQ. during the night.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, April 28, 1945

    We started sweeping at dawn (o-type [moored contact mines; oropesa/otter/kite sweep]). Texaco himself, is in charge. We never secured until, it was too dark to carry on. All during the day bogies were close about. They attacked small craft, sank a DD, and probably more damage. One bogie was shot down. Again, GQ sounded twice during the evening.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, April 29, 1945

    We swept all day again. This time sweeping port and starboard together. In the afternoon we used m-type [magnetic sweep]. There have been several floating mines spotted and destroyed. It is taken that the mines are laid by plane during the night. It has been done before. Bogies have been around all day again. They come in groups. Between them and minesweeping, we get very little rest. You get so tired, you can sleep any place, at any time. For instance today, I went on watch at 0330, and will not be through, and able to hit my sack until 2400. No wonder every one is on edge, and tired.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, April 30, 1945

    We started sweeping at daylight. we secured by noon. By early afternoon we were on our way to the anchorage that is not secured yet. The one in which we had so many casualties. We anchored during the night. It was a peaceful night, no GQ or air raids.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, May 1, 1945

    It looks like we might stay here for a few days. There is plenty of work to be done. We could sure use a little time. I have spent a very full day today, from daylight until mid-night. A couple more days, and the work should be pretty well caught up. The fellows borrowed a movie, off another YMS for tonight. I would like to see it, but it will be impossible.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, May 2, 1945

    We anchored in all day. Just doing repair work on machinery and etc. We borrowed another show “Submarine Alert.” It was very good. We went out the channel and anchored, for sound watch, and look out for suicide boats. The Japs were very close. You could see their gunfire, and our flamethrowers. Most of the island is secure now. Our equipment is scattered all about. Airfields, roads, and etc. are too our use now.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, May 3, 1945

    I worked on the air-compressor all day. We are going to have to get some new parts pretty soon, as we are out. GQ sounded just after chow. We moved from place to place, screening. Several ships were hit by suicide planes, causing heavy casualties. It was condition red, flash-green all night. Today was our biggest and best day for days. Without no warning we received mail. It was old, but it was mail. That is all that counts. It is funny how a little mail change a fellow. We are all jolly fellows now.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, May 4, 1945

    We are still getting repair work done, on our radar, and sound gear. Air raids were off and on all day long. The Japs have a new weapon now, a “Robot-Bomb”. They have fins and rudders similar to an airplane’s. They are launched from bombers a few miles out. A man inside, glides them into a ship. They have been pretty effective.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, May 5, 1945

    We received stores from an AKN[?]. From they gave us, and that which we took ourselves, we received quite a variety. Air raids again during the day. For some unknown reason all of the raids have at daylight instead of darkness, as they were before, the majority of the time.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, May 6, 1945

    Air raids during the day again. One suicide-plane hit a large seaplane tender, with heavy casualties. Robot bombs are adding up our casualty list. Several planes were shot down before they could do any damage. We worked all night on the main engines. A sleeve was cracked, and leaking badly.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, May 7, 1945

    Two or three air raids again. I don’t know of any damage done so far. Many times they attack the patrol ships, and call it a day. Tonight we will be up again flushing the evaporator. I have never flushed one before, so I don’t know how long it will take.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, May 8, 1945

    No air raids today for a change. It was too cloudy and stormy. We re-fuelled from a tanker, and took on stores from a CMS.

  • Journal Entry, Wed, May 9, 1945

    During the day we done odd jobs that had to be done. In the afternoon, we had a mail call, not much, but a few. Right after dark we had two air raids. Several ships were hit, causing heavy casualties. Luck is still with us. I hope it holds out. We hear a rumor we may go back to [Saipan], or calmer water soon. The stormy season will soon be here. It is to rough for small craft, to withstand.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, May 10, 1945

    We headed for the northwest anchorage about daylight. We swept with m-type [magnetic sweep] gear until early afternoon. It is out turn for patrol duty tonight. Our position is just a few hundred yards from Jap held territory. We are so close now, you can see flame-throwers in action. Shells are whistling over our heads. I wouldn’t be surprised if we were hit. As soon as it is dark, we will be much safer.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, May 11, 1945

    We are sweeping very early again, with same type gear. The more we sweep the more we become careless. We used to be on edge seeing ships blow up from mines. Now we just go on as if nothing is happening. We are anchored in tonight. The weather is so stormy I doubt if we have any air raids.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, May 12, 1945

    We got an early start this morning, sweeping. I don’t how long we will keep this up, but I can think of many others things we could do, that is not so monotonous. We are anchored again, about in the same spot as before. There were three air raids during the night. Some of them we knocked down, some we chassed away, and the others done heavy damage, killing and wounding many. Once during the night we were attacked by suicide boats. They were destroyed before they could get very far.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, May 13, 1945

    Same routine as always. We borrowed a show off LST-122. They are pretty good at lending shows. Maybe some day we will get one of our own. This evening we had the usual air raids. LSM’s were sending mousetraps ashore. For a while, it looked as if we were going to take the Island by daybreak, because there were so many shells flying.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, May 14, 1945

    I worked on the acoustic hammer all day, while we were sweeping. The sea is calm, and the weather hard to beat. We only had one GQ. tonight, and that was during the show. We don’t mind them so bad, if they will just wait until the show is over.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, May 15, 1945

    We came in early today. Received water from an LST and another show. I think we got patrol again tonight. I sorely hope not. We will just wait and see. There is a suicide boat attack. We pick them up, and then they fade away. They are plenty fast, whatever they are. We are keeping guns manned all night.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, May 16, 1945

    We quit sweeping by 1200, and are on our way to anchor. We borrowed a show from LST-122. “Andy Handy Leads a Double Life”. It was plenty good. This evening Jap planes are quite plentiful. We have orders not to shoot, as we are being screen, and they may pass over without seeing us. Well it worked, but they came so close, you could hit them with a rock. It looks as though they are headed to another anchorage. There is a few reports of ships being hit.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, May 17, 1945

    Again we finished early, and are on our way to another anchorage. If I ever learn the names of these screwy places. At least I know my directions, and one Island from another, all but the names. We received gas, and water from a minelayer. The water is fifty per cent salt, so we are worse off than before. Tomorrow we will have to change. At dusk we picked up bogies. They keep coming and going. Ships were hit about 1000 yards away from us. This lasted until after mid-night. Besides that I have to get up at 0330 to go on watch. The rest of the fellows are as tired as I am though. Maybe tomorrow I will get a little sleep.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, May 18, 1945

    We received new water and flushed out our tanks. Now you can drink a little water without getting sick. I didn’t realize I drank so much water until them. We have had a few days availability, so we should get fixed up in pretty good shape. The ship is changing command soon. We don’t know just exactly what is going to take place, but we do know it saved our necks. We were to go with the bunch that left for the China cost. They call it suicide detail, because very few come back. They go so close to shore, they haven’t got a chance. Not enough fire power. Nothing unusual tonight except two more air raids. A little damage was done, but not much.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, May 19, 1945

    Another fellow got transferred back to the States. Each one that leaves, gets a little closer to me. However I don’t expect to go back until the war is over. Just staying alive is our biggest worry. Bogies came by groups tonight. Many were shot down, while others done heavily damage. Now a few of them are dropping bombs, instead of suicide attacks. They must have finally found out, they haven’t much left, and had better save what they have got.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, May 20, 1945

    Early this morning we returned to [Nakagusuku-Wan; “Buckner Bay”]. They are still fighting it out. Some how they keep coming out of holes here and there. The city is just as flat at a highway. No liberty there. Bogies bothered us again. Very little damage was done this time. Or scout planes, and seas planes took a lot of our hands. I notice today some of the fellows’ nerves are going, and going fast. I hope mine hold out. I don’t get scared and freeze, as I have seen some do, but my knees get a little wobbly now and then. While action is going on, you fell fine. In fact you just can’t wait for something to shoot at. After it is all over, you begin to realize what has happened. Then is when you shake. My first plane is the only time I have shaken. But I have come mighty close to it many times.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, May 21, 1945

    We started routine sweeping early this morning. By noon we were secure. I worked on logs all day, and finally caught up. Taking care of them is really hard on me, as bad as I hate to write. Two air raids tonight. Most of them were destroyed, and the others done little damage.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, May 22, 1945

    Routine sweeping, the same as before. It started raining this morning, and hasn’t quit all day. Oh, how we like the rainy days. The Japs don’t like rain, so things are a little more peaceful. However, we still had one raid.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, May 23, 1945

    Routine sweeping, same as before. It is still raining. At times it looks like a cloud burst, then the sun will shine. This Jap weather is just as stupid and etcetera as they are. Tonight was a rather long GQ. They just kept coming from somewhere. They are after our airfield, or I should say, their airfield. We just borrowed it and didn’t give it back. I think they are sore about it, because they are so precipitant about it.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, May 24, 1945

    Again, routine sweeping. It is still raining off and on all day. At least we get plenty of fresh water for the washer. We had a mail call this afternoon. Not many, but a few letters. Air raids kept us up practically all night. Bogies were so close at times, you could hit them with a baseball, and I mean just that. Many were shot down. The others missed their objective. Luck was with everyone tonight.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, May 25, 1945

    Routine sweeping, only this time a little more exciting. Air raids were staged all day long. Very seldom do they come in broad daylight. Let them come by daylight. They haven’t a chance. We will get them every time. The rain is still pouring. It looks like too cloudy of weather for any air raids tonight. We just received word that many ships were hit severely. I guess the last bunch really hit.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, May 26, 1945

    Routine sweeping. It rained so hard all day, we were unable to do much work. Rain or not, we still had GQ. We have more by day than by night lately. That helps all the way around. We finally received a movie for our projector. We had given up hopes long ago. When you least expect it, here it is. The show we had today was “Old Acquaintance” [1943], starring Betty Davis. It was a very good show.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, May 27, 1945

    Routine sweeping. It is still raining, off and on all day. At least it is cool, and we’re able to sleep at nights without sweating too much. Right after daylight, the air raids started. Three bogies were headed right for us. We saw them far enough away, that we were ready for them. Just before they got to us, one peeled off, and suicided on a PCS, but missed by a hair. The other two circled around us, getting closer and closer. We all figured this was the end, and was going to go down fighting. They dipped and turned several times, as though in a dive. We have very little firepower or ammunition to waste, so we held our fire until they would be right on us. Believe me there wasn’t a man who wasn’t thinking of a prayer of some sort. Just about the time you feel you can’t hold your nerves or fire any longer, they passed over us, and went for bigger ships. We have seen one plane, many of times get through a barrage of two hundred or more ships, and successfully hit something. Planes all around, diving on any size or shape of vessel, and us alone from any help, and no firepower is enough to freeze a man in his tracks. Death does not seem so terrible to watch others die and be blown to bits. It does not make you nervous or pray for safety. Only when it is a matter of seconds away from yourself, do you think of yourself, and how you want to live, and not die. Many pictures flash before your eyes, your school days, your folks and home, your sweetheart, the future, and all it has to offer you. You think of God and his teachings—what you have done, right and wrong. So many things happen at once, it is like a dream. When it is all over you forget about the beauty of life, and what it has to offer you. Things are normal again, and you go on living as before. Along about noon, a merchant ship nearly took our fantail off. We had our sweep gear out and couldn’t back down, nor neither could she, because of her size and weight. We all but touched them. Just another narrow escape, with good luck in our favor again. Tonight we are on patrol-duty off some island, for suicide-boats and anything else that may come along.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, May 28, 1945

    Today we swept between the two main islands. We anchored at Naha during the afternoon. We managed to trade movies. Deanna Durbin in “First Love” [1939]. Oh, what a gal! At 1900 we went on patrol at the north end of the island. About dark we picked up bogies. They kept coming until they were right above us. A DD started opening up on them. Shells and flares were bursting all around us. It was so light you could write a letter. We steamed ahead full-speed to escape the light. About the time we were again in darkness they were opening up on them some place else. They were being knocked down right and left but kept coming from somewhere. This kept up at different intervals all night long. We didn’t mind much, except the sleep we lost.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, May 29, 1945

    Same as usual, sweeping along the island. Today was pretty rough sea. But very little rain, for a change. This evening we had two more GQ’s. Bogies were very close, but never bothered us. They are raising all kinds of hell at the west anchorage. Here is hoping they come no closer.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, May 30, 1945

    We went to southwest anchorage, early this morning. We received fuel, water, and supplies. And most of all, mail. Tonight we are going to screen, which is much better than patrol duty any day. There were two air raids tonight. It was pouring so bad at times we had to leave our guns and go for shelter.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, May 31, 1945

    We are trying something new today—laying san buoys and anchor floats way out to sea. There is scuttlebutt that we are going towards the China coast, as a decoy. Anchor, and wait for the Japs. I have also heard it called suicide detail. We have been lucky before, but it will take more than luck this time. Again we had two air raids. It was so stormy neither could see each other.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, June 1, 1945

    Our steering cable is broken in two, so we lay in a few days. In the meantime, we will be able to do a lot of undone work. I saw the 302[?] again today. They are anchored off our port-beam. This evening was very stormy, and cloudy. Nevertheless, we still had our bogies. Good or bad weather, they still come.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, June 2, 1945

    We are still laying in and doing odd jobs. A few more days in and we should be in pretty good shape. The skipper was transferred today. Everyone hated to see him leave. He was an up and up skipper. You shoot square with him and he would do the same with you. Again, this evening was very bad weather. It was so foggy you could only see a few yards. We only saw one bogie, and he was trying to find something to hit, but couldn’t.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, June 3, 1945

    We are ready to go again. Everything is in shape. We had one GQ today, shortly after dinner. You would think this bad weather would hold them off, but they never miss a day. We received second-class mail today. It was all in pretty bad shape. The way the Navy handles mail, it is a miracle it gets through as well as it does.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, June 4, 1945

    We started out early this morning to sweep. Soon after we had left, a broadcast was sent to all small craft. “A typhoon is coming. Head for cover immediately.” We headed for the northern end of [Okinawa]. We went up a small winding channel about eight or nine miles. All the way, we passed villages. All the natives came down to the beach to cheer us. So many of their men had been killed or were taken by the Japs that all was left was the old men. We finally anchored by the biggest village off them all. Hundreds of them came down to the ships. Sailors were giving them candy, cigarettes, and etcetera. They are sure a happy bunch of people, and twice as happy to see the Americans come. Some of the habits of these people are revolting, and some are amusing. For instance, if at any time they want to use the head, they take their dress off, and go about their business there and then. It made no difference who was there. They put their dress back on, and continue with what they were doing. The scenery is like something you have always dreamed for. Everything seems to have its own appointed place. How I long to have a camera. Never before have I seen such beauty on the hillsides. Everyone says they would like to spend the duration here, including myself.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, June 5, 1945

    It rained off and on all day long. But it was still a nice day—so calm and quiet that it made you want to stay forever. Or, at least a few weeks. The natives were all about by daybreak. They are sure a busy bunch of people, always doing something. They are along the beach picking up something. I don’t know what. But they stay there all day. Their gardens are built on the slope of the hill. The biggest ones are much smaller than an acre, yet they seem to have plenty. The average house has a grass roof, and something similar for the sides. However, there are a few modern houses of brick. This typhoon is over, and another one reported, so we will stay in tonight. Bogies are about all night, but fail to see us, as we are so hidden in the small channel.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, June 6, 1945

    Today is a perfect day—no rain or clouds, just the sun and a cool breeze. At 1100, we are underway. The storms have passed, and we are on our way to sweep. By early afternoon, we started sweeping off Dead Man’s [Quick][?]. Tonight we are to anchor in.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, June 7, 1945

    We are getting ready for a big push somewhere, so will have a few days’ availability. Two GQ’s tonight, but not much excitement.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, June 8, 1945

    We tore our [air compressor] down to take aboard a repair ship (USS Mona Island [ARG-9]). If it does not work this time, it will never work. We are about out of water this morning, and can’t get any. There is a water shortage, because of so many small craft in here. The usual GQ’s.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, June 9, 1945

    We tied alongside the Mona Island [ARG-9] this morning. They are going to do several repair jobs on us. Everything is priority, because of this big deal coming off. We received water today, which was greatly needed. Two GQ’s today.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, June 10, 1945

    We have one more day to get our repair work done, so there will be a lot of night work to be done. We had a show aboard, but missed some of it because of a little extra work. The days are getting better as we go along. Spring must be here. No rain, which is very unusual.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, June 11, 1945

    The Mona Island [ARG-9] should finish us up today. We also flushed the evaporator today. There were two GQ’s throughout the day. The Japs must be getting soft. They are slacking off.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, June 12, 1945

    We took on more anti-aircraft ammunition today. We were already loaded, but now we have it every place. This next assignment must be something. Or, they expect a lot.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, June 13, 1945

    We were told our new assignment and etcetera. We are to sweep a 40-mile area southwest of [Okinawa] about 70 miles. The objective is [Sakishima]. Twelve AM’s will sweep both sides, covering an area of two miles a sweep. They will make two 40-mile passes a day. Six YMS’s will lay san buoys, be buoy spotters and etcetera. PGM’s will be our air-supporters. They will keep circling close by. Four DM’s will protect us from surface craft and etcetera. In all, there will be about 40 ships. In addition there will be four Hellcats and four Avengers, which will help a lot. This minefield is right in a sub lane—70 some odd subs have been reported. In addition to this, there are four main airbases on [Sakishima], where a big share of suicide planes come from. We were told to expect the worse, and hope for the best. If everything goes well, we should be through in a week. At 2300 we are to start out on our objective, and be there by sunrise to get an early start.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, June 14, 1945

    We reached our objective alright, and are off to an early start. Two AM’s lost their pigs, and we recovered them. They are so big, we have very little space left. Right after dinner, we started laying san buoys. We are quite alone now with all these subs and etcetera. Somehow, no one cares. We have seen as rugged a duty as you will ever see, and gotten through alright. So, why worry now. Now we are spotters. We race to a san buoy, and circle it until the convoy catches up. We race ahead to another one and etcetera. One sub was picked up 1,000 yards away. He finally dived away, so was forgotten about. This evening, as the preceding evenings, we will leave the mined area and patrol in formation, throughout the night, resuming our work early the next morning. So far, we have been very lucky as far as air raids and sub attacks and etcetera are concerned. It won’t hurt my feelings if we never do again. We could all use a good night’s rest.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, June 15, 1945

    One mine was cut during the day. So far, there has been no air raids or casualties of any kind. We spot-patrolled today. Nothing unusual happened.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, June 16, 1945

    Poker games have started again. Something to break the monotony. Bogies were close about during the day, but never bothered us. They finally broke into the minefield. Several mines were cut and destroyed today.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, June 17, 1945

    We refueled while underway from ARS-9. PGM-9 drew alongside and swapped us movies. Quite a few mines were cut today. Two more days ought to finish this field up. YMS-93 got her orders to go back to the States today. Our ship is the oldest ship in this operation, so maybe we will get a chance. I doubt it like Hell. We just aren’t that lucky. We have done so well on every assignment given us, I don’t think they want to give us up. Maybe we should have messed up a few times good and proper, then our chances would be greater.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, June 18, 1945

    We really hit the jackpot today. Mines were popping up all day. Being so many cut today, and two AMs’ gear fowling up, we got one half day behind schedule. Summer is here—at least the heat is. It is between 110 and 120 degrees in the engine room all day. It is so hot you can hardly move. It may get hotter than 120, because that is as high as the thermometer goes, and it isn’t unusual to see it to the top. This is the first time in my life I ever could go out into the hot sun to cool off.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, June 19, 1945

    Dozens of mines were cut today, slowing us down to one sweep a day. So far we are one-day loosers[?]. Bogies were picked up off and on all day.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, June 20, 1945

    A typhoon has been reported. We are to head for coverage. A typhoon passed, and we are on our way to [Kerama Retto] for repairs, fuel, and water.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, June 21, 1945

    We are ready for duty again. About 1500, five Jap planes came in low, unnoticed until they were right on us. Four of them each got a ship, and the fifth one crashed into the island. Late this evening, about two-dozen Jap snipers started firing on us from the beach. It didn’t take us long to quiet them down.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, June 22, 1945

    About sundown, we started for [Sakishima] again. This time, PGM’s are taking the place of LCV’s. We will start sweeping early as possible in the morning.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, June 23, 1945

    Quite a few mines were cut all day long. It was quite a heavily laid field. We are acting as demolition ship today, so got our share of the mines and firing. Jap planes were about most of the day. Having to wear our life jackets was very uncomfortable in the hot sun. Around sundown, our steering cable broke. ARS-22 towed us until we got it clamped together again. We are now heading back to anchorage.

  • Journal Entry, Sunday, June 24, 1945

    By sun up, we were on our way into the anchorage. We refueled, and took on water. Done a few odd jobs, and anchored in all night. We had a movie (“The Lodger” [1944]). The campaign for [Okinawa] is closed now. Only 5,000 Japs remain in five groups controlling about nine square miles. 1,000 surrendered at one time—more than the total of the whole war with Japan. It should not be long now until the rest either surrender or are annihilated.

  • Journal Entry, Monday, June 25, 1945

    Today was a very busy day. So much of our machinery is breaking down. All night long we pulled cylinders and etcetera. We just have a few days, even if it is all day and night.

  • Journal Entry, Tuesday, June 26, 1945

    We started work after four hours’ sleep. We are all pretty tired, and look forward to a good night’s rest. We have been working all night again, finishing up the main engines.

  • Journal Entry, Wednesday, June 27, 1945

    Today was slightly easier. We work on the generator, as the oil seal was broke. By dark we were finished with the generator and done a little extra work on the main engines again. Well anyway, we had all night in, and we sure needed it.

  • Journal Entry, Thursday, June 28, 1945

    We can take it a little easier now. Just do odd jobs and look busy. We traded movies, so had a little entertainment.

  • Journal Entry, Friday, June 29, 1945

    We are preparing for another big push somewhere. There will be plenty of small craft. We heard we will probably see China. Just so it is the right part. We may receive plenty of opposition, and yet we may not. Anyway, we are preparing for it. There hasn’t been any real excitement for a few days. It does not seem natural at all. “Pistol Packin’ Mama” [1943], was the show tonight. No one cared much for it.

  • Journal Entry, Saturday, June 30, 1945

    Today we had general cleaning for inspection today. Everyone was busy doing something or the other. With such short notice, we were sort of caught off guard. Nevertheless, we passed everything with “excellent”.