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Navsource Online: Destroyer Escort Photo Archive

ex-HMS Essington (BDE-21)

USS Harold C. Thomas (DE 21)


Flag Hoist / Radio Call Sign:
N - D - N - Q
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons


Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row: Combat Action Ribbon (retroactive)
Second Row: American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal w/ 2 stars - WWII Victory Medal


Specifications:
Class: Evarts
Type: GMT (diesel-electric tandem motor drive, short hull, 3" guns)
Displacement: 1,140 tons (light), 1,430 tons (full)
Length: 283' 6" (wl), 289' 5" (oa)
Beam: 35' 0" (extreme)
Draft: 11' 0" (draft limit)
Propulsion: 4 GM Model 16-278A diesel engines with electric drive, 6000 shp, 2 screws
Speed: 19 kts
Range: 4,150 nm @ 12 knots
Armament: 3 - 3"/50 Mk22 (1x3), 1 - 1.1"/75 cal. Mk2 quad AA (4x1), 9 x 20mm Mk 4 AA, 1 Hedgehog Projector Mk10 (144 rounds), 8 Mk6 depth charge projectors, 2 Mk9 depth charge tracks
Complement: 15 / 183
Harold C. Thomas (DE 21) Building and Operational Data:
  • 30 April 1942: Keel laid as HMS Essington (BDE-21) by the Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, Cal.
  • 18 December 1942: Launched, retained for U.S. Navy use, redesignated DE 21
  • 31 May 1943: Commissioned, Cdr H. Reich in command
  • 25 October 1945: Decommissioned at San Pedro, Cal. after 2.4 years of service
  • 28 November 1945: Struck from the NVR
  • 25 November 1946: Sold for scrapping to the Pacific Bridge Co., San Francisco, Cal.
  • 26 March 1947: Scrapping commenced
    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    By And/Or Copyright
    H.C. Thomas 114k 18 December 1942: Distinguished guests at the launching of HMS Essington (BDE-21) are from left to right: Capt Nelson H. Goss, USN (Ret), Mrs Hugo W. Osterhaus, Radm Hugo W. Osterhaus, USN (Ret), Speaker, Mrs. Nelson H. Goss, Sponsor, Radm W. L. Friedell, USN (Shipyard Commandant), Mrs. W. L. Friedell (Matron of Honor), Mr. Luther E. Gibson, and Mrs. Luther E. Gibson. (U.S. Navy photo #DE-21-7944-42) Darryl Baker
    H.C. Thomas 112k 18 December 1942: Mrs. Nelson H. Goss, Sponsor is pictured in front of the bow of the HMS Essington (BDE-21) at Mare Island. (U.S. Navy photo #DE-21-7939-42)
    H.C. Thomas 83k 18 December 1942: Radm Hugo W. Osterhaus, USN (Ret) was the guest speaker at the launching of the HMS Essington (BDE-21) at Mare Island. Radm W. L. Friedell, USN (Shipyard Commandant) is to the left of Radm Osterhaus. (U.S. Navy photo #DE-21-7940-42)
    H.C. Thomas 1188k 18 December 1942: Mrs. Nelson H. Goss the Ship's Sponsor is pictured christening the HMS Essington (BDE-21) at Mare Island. From left to right: Radm W. L. Friedell, USN (Shipyard Commandant), Mrs Goss, unidentified Navy officer, and Mrs. W. L. Friedell (Matron of Honor). (U.S. Navy photo #DE-21-7941-42)
    H.C. Thomas 70k port bow, undated Donald T. Livsey via his son Bryan
    H.C. Thomas 131k the gunnery division
    View the USS Harold C. Thomas (DE 21) DANFS history entry
    located on the Naval History and Heritage Command web site.
    View a short article on the design and development of the Evarts Class DE submitted by Bob Sables.
    Harold C. Thomas' Commanding Officers
    Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves
    Dates of Command Commanding Officers
    1.) 31 May 1943 - 07 Sep. 1943Cdr. Herman Reich (Comm.)
    2.) 16 Sep. 1943 - 23 Jan. 1944Lcdr. Volney Hamilton Craig, Jr., USNR
    3.) 23 Jan. 1944 - 05 Jan. 1945Lcdr. Edward Joseph Haddon, USNR
    4.) 05 Jan. 1945 - 06 Oct. 1945Lcdr. Godfrey Cheshire, Jr., USNR (Decomm.)

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information

    None
    Note About Contacts

    Contact information is compiled from various sources over a period of time and may, or may not, be correct. Every effort has been
    made to list the newest contact. However, our entry is only as good as the latest information that's been sent to us. We list only
    a contact for the ship if one has been sent to us. We do NOT have crew lists or rosters available. Please see the Frequently Asked
    Questions section on Navsource's Main Page for that information.


    Additional Resources

    Destroyer Escort Sailors Association
    Tin Can Sailors
    The Destroyer History Foundation
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    Page Last Updated 09 October 2013