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Navsource Online: Destroyer Escort Photo Archive

USS Lovelace (DE 198)

Flag Hoist / Radio Call Sign:
N - Y - X - U
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row: American Campaign Medal
Second Row: Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal w/ 3 stars - World War II Victory Medal - Philippine Liberation Ribbon

Class: Buckley
Type: TE (turbine-electric drive, 3" guns)
Displacement: 1400 tons (light), 1740 tons (full)
Length: 300' (wl), 306' (oa)
Beam: 36' 9" (extreme)
Draft: 10' 6" (draft limit)
Propulsion: 2 "D" Express boilers, G.E. turbines with electric drive, 12000 shp, 2 screws
Speed: 24 kts
Range: 6,000 nm @ 12 knots
Armament: 3 x 3"/50 Mk22 (1x3), 1 twin 40mm Mk1 AA, 8 x 20mm Mk 4 AA, 3 x 21" Mk15 TT (3x1), 1 Hedgehog Projector Mk10 (144 rounds), 8 Mk6 depth charge projectors, 2 Mk9 depth charge tracks
Complement: 15 / 198
Lovelace (DE 198) Building and Operational Data:
  • 22 May 1943: Keel laid at the Norfolk Navy Yard, Portsmouth, Va.
  • 04 July 1943: Launched and christened, sponsored by Mrs. Donald A. Lovelace, the widow of Lcdr. Lovelace
  • 07 November 1943: Commissioned at the Norfolk Navy Yard, St. Helena Annex, Lcdr. R. D. de Kay, Jr., in command
  • 22 May 1946: Decommissioned at San Diego, Cal. after 2 years and 6˝ months of service having steamed 117,005 miles, Lovelace was credited with the destruction of one Japanese aircraft
  • 20 February 1947: Inactivation completed at San Diego, Cal., assigned to Submarine Group Two, San Diego Group, Pacific Reserve Fleet
  • 01 July 1967: Struck from the NVR while mothballed at Bremerton, Wash.
  • 25 April 1968: Sunk as target off San Clemente Island, Cal.
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    65k Donald Alexander Lovelace, born in Scottsburgh, Va., 20 June 1906, entered the Naval Academy 08 July 1924 and was commissioned ensign upon graduation in 1928. After duty in Wyoming, he learned to fly at Pensacola, Fla., during 1930 and subsequently was active in developing naval aviation. At the outbreak of the war in the Pacific, Lovelace was assigned to Yorktown (CV 5). He soon won the Distinguished Flying Cross "for heroic conduct in aerial combat, as division leader and pilot, when on 20 February 1942, in enemy waters, he led his division in a vigorous and determined attack, in the face of combined machine-gun and cannon fire, against a formation of enemy bombers, and he, with the assistance of his teammate, caused the destruction of one enemy bomber." Lieutenant Commander Lovelace was killed in a plane crash northeast of Midway Island 02 June 1942 while searching for the Japanese naval force which was defeated in the Battle of Midway 2 days later.

    USS Lovelace (DE 198) (1943-1946) was the first ship to be named in his honor.

    (Photo from the U.S. Naval Academy Yearbook; The Lucky Bag, Class of 1928.)
    Bill Gonyo
    Downey, Cal.

    Assoc. Researcher
    16k 04 July 1943: Portsmouth, Va. - USS Lovelace (DE 198) launching at Norfolk Navy Yard. -
    56k February 1944: Noumea, New Calendonia - The U.S. Navy destroyer escort USS Lovelace (DE 198) anchored in the harbour of Nouméa, New Caledonia, from 10 to 19 February 1944. While anchored she took the opportunity to clean both her boilers, fire and watersides. She is painted in Camouflage Measure 31, Design 13D. Note the HF/DF antenna in place of the SA radar at the masthead. Photo by U.S. Navy SeaBee Detachment 1019.

    (U.S. Navy photo #19-LCM-DE198-1 from the National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Md., courtesy of C. Lee Johnson, Ships of the U.S. Navy in WWII “Dazzle” Camouflage)
    Bob Hurst
    Worksop, Nottinghamshire,
    England, United Kingdom
    294k Feb. / March 1944: Noumea, New Calendonia - USS Lovelace (DE 198) wearing Measure 31/13D camouflage scheme, refueling from an unidentified station tanker outside of the harbor at Noumea. This photo is attributed to SeaBee Detachment 1019 and was probably taken early in 1944 in February or March since Lovelace arrived at Noumea on 08 February 1944. Based at Noumea, she conducted escort and screening duties in the Solomon Islands prior to her 19 April departure to the New Guinea battle zone The submarine net enclosing the inner harbor is visible in the background.

    (U.S. Navy photo #19-LCM-DE198-4 from the National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Md., courtesy of C. Lee Johnson, Ships of the U.S. Navy in WWII “Dazzle” Camouflage)
    Mike Green
    Port Angeles, Wash.
    409k 13 March 1944: Espiritu Santo - USS Coolbaugh (DE 217), USS Lovelace, and USS Darby (DE 218) are nested with USS Ingersoll (DE 652) at the fleet anchorage. Photo taken by Milt Volkens aboard USS Langley (CVL 27).

    (From the Langley/Volkens Photo Collection at Eastern Carolina Univ.)
    John Chiquoine
    West Chester, Pa.

    Lovelace History
    View the USS Lovelace (DE 198) DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command web site.
    View the official War History of USS Lovelace as submitted by the ship at war's end.

    Lovelace's Commanding Officers
    Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves
    Dates of Command Commanding Officers
    1.) 07 Nov. 1943 - 14 Oct.  1944Cmdr. Rodman Drake DeKay Jr., USNR (Comm. CO) (USNA '19) (Port Washington, N.Y.)
    2.) 14 Oct. 1944 - 13 Dec. 1945Lcdr. Eugene Ludwig de Kieffer, USNR (Evanston, Ill.)
    3.) 13 Dec. 1945 - 07 Feb. 1946Lt. Robert McCarthy Rothwell, USNR (Honolulu, Hi.)
    4.) 07 Feb. 1946 - 13 May 1946Lt.(jg) William Charles Muchow, USNR (Denver, Col.)
    5.) 13 May 1946 - 22 May 1946Lt.(jg) D. E. Erwin, USNR (Decomm. CO)

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    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, rosters, or deck logs available. Please see the
    Frequently Asked Questions section on NavSource's Main Page for that information.

    Additional Resources

    Tin Can Sailors
    The U.S. Navy Memorial
    The Destroyer Escort Historical Museum
    The Destroyer History Foundation
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    Page Last Updated: 27 October 2023