USS CHIKASKIA (AO-54)
Chikaskia (AO-54) was launched 2
October 1942 by Bethlehem-Sparrows Point Shipyard
under a Maritime Commission contract; sponsored by Mrs.
J. L. Bates; acquired by the Navy 10 January 1943; and commissioned
10 November 1943
Commander L. J. Hasse
On 15 December 1943 Chikaskia sailed
loaded oil at Aruba and arrived at Pearl Harbor 7
January 1944. She joined Task Force 58 at Majuro 4 February and
provided logistic support for the fast carrier force's strikes during
the occupation of Kwajalein
and on Truk.
Between 7 March and 15 September 1944
Chikaskia operated out of Espiritu Santo
New Hebrides; Purvis
Florida Island; and Manus
bringing vital at sea
replenishment of fuel to the fast carrier task forces and other
ships. Departing Manus 18 September 1944 to aid the fast carrier task
force engaged in the invasion of the southern Palaus
gave a striking illustration of her capabilities by
simultaneously refueling Iowa (BB-61) and New Jersey
(BB-62) 23 September.
Changing her base to Ulithi on 25 October 1944
Chikaskia continued to support the fast carrier units. She
was part of the fueling unit that endured the typhoon which struck
the 3d Fleet during a fueling rendezvous 18 December
heavy seas to return safely to Ulithi 24 December. She continued to
provide logistic support during the operations in the Philippines
and the invasions of Iwo Jima and Okinawa until she returned to San
for overhaul 22 May 1945.
Chikaskia returned to Ulithi to support
the 3d Fleet from 17 August 1945 until she entered Tokyo Bay 20
September. After a period of shuttle service in support of the
operations in China and Korea (8-22 November)
she served as station
tanker at Sasebo from 29 November 1945 to 31 March 1946.
Chikaskia sailed from Sasebo 8 April
1946 bound for Bahrein
in the Persian Gulf
which she reached 30
and after loading oil
sailed for Kwajelein to participate in
" the atomic weapons tests at
Assigned to the Naval Transportation Service 1
Chikaskia continued to operate in the Far East.
On 1 October 1949 she was assigned to the Military Sea Transportation
Service established that date.
1952 - 1953: by LT. Roger Josselym
The Chikaskia, for 14 of my 22 months aboard, served as a Military Sea Transport vessel
supplying fuel oil to naval bases on both U.S. coasts, the Caribbean and Hawaii. By May
of 1953 we had been refitted and trained as a Fleet Oiler assigned for 8 months to the 7th Fleet,
Korea. Our reassignment entailed not only the new underway fuelling operations, but also
the use of armament ranging from 20 and 40mm to 3 and 5 Inch guns. Then there were the depth
charges, minesweeping gear, and the required ammo storage. This, along with the 18,000 barrels
of avgas aboard brought on a great awakening among the officers and crew. My anecdotes and photos
should bring back memories to others who served aboard AO54.
Click Here to Read LT Josselyn's Complete 1952 - 1953 AO-54 History
Returned to the Service Force Pacific Fleet
28 February 1953
Chikaskia fueled ships
operating in the Korean war between 30 May and 27 July. She continued
to operate in the Pacific until June 1955
when she returned to the
United States. Chikaskia was placed out of commission in
reserve 7 November 1955. Recommissioned 12 December 1956 she was
placed in the ready reserve in late 1957 and again joined the
permanent Reserve Fleet in December 1958. Chikaskia was
recommissioned on 17 December 1960.
Chikaskia received six battle stars for
World War II service and one star for Korean war service.
[Note: The above USS CHIKASKIA (AO-54) history may or may not contain text provided by crew members of the USS CHIKASKIA (AO-54) or by other non-crew members and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]