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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive


Contributed by Mike Smolinski

USS Kennebec (AO-36)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Bravo - Kilo - Whiskey
NBKW
JANAP Tactical Voice Radio Call Sign - Lilac (N)ovember - Section 6A of JANAP 119(F) 1968
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons




Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - China Service Medal (extended)
Second Row - American Campaign Medal - Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal (1) - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal
Third Row - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Medal (with Asia clasp) - National Defense Service Medal (2)
Fourth Row - Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (4-Vietnam, 5-Korea) - Vietnam Service Medal (7) - Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal


Kennebec Class Fleet Oiler
  • Laid down as SS Corsicana, a Maritime Commission type (T2-SO) tanker hull, under Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 142), at Bethlehem Steel Shipyard, Sparrows Point, MD.
  • Launched, 19 April 1941
  • Acquired by the Navy, 13 January 1942
  • Commissioned USS Kennebec (AO-36), 4 February 1942, CDR. Stuart S. Reynolds in command
  • During World War II USS Kennebec was assigned to both the Europe-Africa-Middle East and Asiatic-Pacific Theaters and participated in the following campaign:

    Europe-Africa-Middle East Theater
    Campaign and Dates
    North African Occupation
    Algeria-Morocco landings, 8 to 11 November 1942

  • Following World War II USS Kennebec was assigned to Occupation and China service in the Far East for the following periods:

    Navy Occupation Service Medal

    China Service Medal (extended)
    7 September 1945 to 23 March 19467 September 1945 to 23 March 1946
    3 to 25 May 194626 May to 9 July 1946
    1 February to 5 March 19476 to 7 March 1947
    16 April to 5 May 1947 
    12 to 28 June 1947 

  • Decommissioned, 4 September 1950, at San Diego, CA.
  • Laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet
  • Recommissioned, 11 January 1951, at Oakland, CA., CDR. A. G. Beckman in command
  • Decommissioned, 25 September 1954, at San Diego, CA.
  • Laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet, San Diego Group
  • Recommissioned, 14 December 1956, CDR. Naden F. Stimac in command
  • Decommissioned, 31 October 1957
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 14 January 1959
  • Transferred to the Maritime Administration (MARAD) for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet
  • Reacquired by the Navy and recommissioned, 16 December 1961
  • During the Vietnam War USS Kennebec participated in the following campaigns:

    Vietnam War Campaigns
    Campaign and Dates Campaign and Dates
    Vietnam Defense
    25 to 29 September 1965
    7 to 10 and 20 to 26 October1965
    30 October to 11 November 1965
    23 to 27 November 1965
    8 to 15 December 1965
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive - Phase IV
    7 to 15 April 1968
    26 April to 5 May 1968
    11 to 20 and 25 to 28 May 1968
    3 to 10, 15 to 22 and 30 June 1968
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive
    31 December 1965
    15 to 17 January 1966
    2 to 7 and 19 to 25 February 1966
    5 to 10 and 22 to 30 March 1966
    7 to 11 and 22 to 25 April 1966
    30 April to 2 May 1966
    6 to 12 and 28 to 29 May 1966
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive - Phase V
    1 to 07 July 1968
    12 to 20 September 1968
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive - Phase II
    5 to 9 and 18 to 28 February 1967
    11 to 19 March 1967
    25 March to 3 April 1967
    9 to 18 April 1967
    5 to 15 May 1967
    Vietnam Summer-Fall 1969
    11 to 18 June 1969
    24 June to 1 July 1969
    11 to 20 July 1969
    7 to 16 and 21 to 27 August 1969
    3 to 8 and 22 to 28 September 1969
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive - Phase III
    24 June to 4 July 1967
    9 to 16 and 22 to 29 July 1967
    3 to 16 August 1967
     

  • Decommissioned, 29 June 1970, at Naval Inactive Ship Maintenance Facility, Mare Island, Vallejo, CA.
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 15 July 1976
  • Transferred to the Maritime Administration (MARAD) for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet
  • Final Disposition, sold by MARAD for non-transportation use, 6 April 1982, to Levin Metals Corporation for $180,077.00 and subsequently scrapped.
  • USS Kennebec earned one battle star for World War II service and seven campaign stars for Vietnam War service
    Specifications:
    Displacement 6,013 t.(lt) 22,380 t.(fl)
    Length 501' 5"
    Beam 68'
    Draft 30' 2"
    Speed 16.7 kts. (trial)
    Complement
    Officers - 20
    Enlisted - 194
    Largest Boom Capacity 7.5 t.
    Armament
    one single 5"/38 cal dual purpose gun mount
    four single 3"/50 cal dual purpose gun mounts
    four twin 40mm AA gun mounts
    four twin 20mm AA gun mounts
    Cargo Capacity
    Oil - 109,600 Bbls
    Gasoline - 689,000 Gals
    Fuel Capacity NSFO - 4,550 Bbls
    Propulsion
    one Westinghouse geared turbine
    two Foster and Wheeler P-type boilers 420psi 720°
    double Westinghouse Main Reduction Gear
    Ship's Service Generators
    one turbo-drive 50Kw 240V D.C.
    two turbo-drive 300Kw 240V A.C.
    single propeller, 12,000shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    Kennebec 43k Artist C.G. Evers painting of USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway during World War II
    US Navy photo.
    Pieter Bakels
    Kennebec 40k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo.
    Robert Hurst
    Kennebec 15k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway, 4 October 1942, location unknown.
    US Navy photo.
    US Naval Historical Center
    Kennebec 43k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway, circa October 1942, location unknown. Hyperwar US Navy in WWII
    Kennebec 70k USS Kennebec (AO-36) at anchor, date and location unknown. Harvey Golden
    Mattaponi 90k USS Kennebec (AO-36) and USS Mattaponi (AO-41) moored pierside while being prepared for recommissioning at San Diego in 1956.
    US Navy photo.
    Richard Miller BMCS USNR (Ret)
    Kennebec 115k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway, 16 September 1963, location unknown.
    US Navy photo # 1086796
    Richard Miller BMCS USNR (Ret)
    Kennebec 128k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway, circa 1963, location unknown.
    US Navy photo
    Richard Miller BMCS USNR (Ret)
    Sanctuary 46k USS Kennebec 9AO-36) refueling USS Sanctuary (AH-17) off the coast of Vietnam, circa 1966-1968. Photo by LCDR George E. Pillow Jr., USN CO USS Kretchmer (DER-329)
    Kennebec 312k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway alongside USS Hancock (CVA-19) off the coast of Japan in March 1967. Photo by Charles "Bud" Dehnert USS Hancock
    Kennebec 95k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway two days out of Yokosuka, Japan, 22 April 1969 © Richard Leonhardt
    Kennebec 103k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo
    Courtesy Dick Hawkins
    USS Kennebec (AO 36) web site
    Kennebec 71k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo
    Chet Morris
    Kennebec 109k USS Kennebec (AO-36) underway, date and location unknown.
    Photo from USS Kennebec Association web site
    Richard Miler BMCS USNR (Ret)
    Kennebec 127k Ex-USS Kennebec (AO-36) laid up in reserve at the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Suisun Bay, Benecia, CA. in November 1981.
    Photo from "Merchant Ships of World War II: A Post War Album 1" by Victor Young.
    Robert Hurst


    For more photos and information about USS Kennebec, see:
  • Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships
  • USS Kennebec (AO 36) Association
  • MARAD Vessel History Database
  • Commanding Officers

  • Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    Fleet Tankers Association
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 23 May 2014