Please report any broken links or trouble you might come across to the Webmaster. Please take a moment to let us know so that we can correct any problems and make your visit as enjoyable and as informative as possible.


NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive


Contributed by Mike Smolinski

Contributed by Al Grazevich

USS Neches (AO-47)
ex
USNS Neches (T-AO-47) (1957 - 1961)
USS Neches (AO-47) (1942 - 1957)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Charlie - Lima - Tango
NCLT
JANAP Tactical Voice Radio Call Sign - Cocktail (W)hiskey - 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 - Combat Action Ribbon (retroactive) - China Service Medal (extended)
Second Row - American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (9)- World War II Victory Medal
Third Row - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia or Europe clasp) - National Defense Service Medal (2) - Korean Service Medal
Fourth Row - Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (Korea) - Vietnam Service Medal (9) - Philippine Liberation Medal
Fifth Row - United Nations Service Medal - Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal - Republic of Korea War Service Medal (retroactive)


Mattaponi Class Fleet Oiler:
  • Laid down, 12 June 1941, for Keystone Tankship Corp., as SS Aekay, a Maritime Commission type (TE-A(MC-K)) tanker hull, under Maritime Commission contract, (MC hull 148) at Sun Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co., Chester, PA.
  • Launched, 11 October 1941
  • Acquired by the Navy, 20 July 1942
  • Commissioned USS Neches (AO-47), 16 September 1942, CAPT. John J. Curley Jr., in command
  • During World War II was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaigns:

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaigns
    Campaign and Dates Campaign and Dates
    Gilbert Islands operation, 26 November to 7 December 1943 Luzon operation
    Formosa attacks, 3, 4, 8 and 15 January 1945
    China coast attacks, 12 and 16 January 1945
    Nansei Shoto attack, 22 January 1945
    Marshall Islands operation
    Occupation of Kwajalein and Majuro Atolls, 29 January to 8 February 1944
    Occupation of Eniwetok Atoll, 17 February to 2 March 1944
    Iwo Jima operation
    Assault and occupation of Iwo Jima, 15 to 24 February 1945
    Asiatic-Pacific Raids - 1944
    Truk attack, 16 to 17 February 1944
    Marianas attack, 21 to 22 February 1944
    Palau, Yap, Ulithi, Woleai raid, 30 March to 1 April 1944
    Truk, Satawan, Ponape raid, 29 April to 1 May 1944
    Okinawa Gunto operation
    Assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto, 24 March to 30 June 1945
    5th and 3rd Fleet raids in support of Okinawa Gunto, 26 March to 11 June 1945
    Western Caroline Islands operation
    Capture and occupation of southern Palau Islands, 6 September to 14 October 1944
    3rd Fleet supporting operations Okinawa Attack, 9 to 24 September 1944
    3rd Fleet operations against Japan, 10 to 18 July and 26 July to 14 August 1945
    Leyte operation
    Luzon attacks, 20 to 25 November 1944
     

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

    Navy Occupation Service Medal

    China Service Medal (extended)
    2 September to 16 October 19453 April to 4 May 1946
    30 January to 1 April 194617 June to 7 August 1946
    12 to 15 June 194622 September to 27 December 1946
    16 to 20 September 194616 to 19 March 1947
    15 to 17 February 1947 
    10 to 12 March 1947 
    22 March to 2 April 194722 March to 2 April 1947

  • Decommissioned, 10 July 1950, at San Diego, CA.
  • Laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet, San Diego Group
  • Recommissioned, 3 June 1951, at Oakland, CA.
  • USS Neches was assigned to Occupation service in Europe for the following periods:

    Navy Occupation Service Medal
    3 August 1951 to 3 January 1952
    3 June to 3 December 1952
    18 September 1953 to 9 June 1954
    22 November 1954 to 10 June 1955

  • Decommissioned in June 1955
  • Laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet, Stockton Group
  • Placed in service in 1957 as USNS Neches (T-AO-47)
  • During 1957 Neches carried JP-4 and JP-5 from Hawaii to the DEW line stations at Point Barrow, including Adak, Kodiak, Whittier, Haines and Anchorage
  • Recommissioned, 24 November 1961
  • During the Vietnam War USS Neches (AO-47) participated in the following campaigns:

    Vietnam War Campaigns
    Campaign and Dates Campaign and Dates
    Vietnam Defense
    6 to 16 July 1965
    25 July to 3 August 1965
    12 to 27 August 1965
    31 August to 11 September 1965
    4 to 10 and 15 to 20-October 1965
    28 October to 5 November 1965
    16 to 21 November 1965
    28 November to 4 December 1965
    10 to 13 December 1965
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive - Phase VI
    2 to 6 and 11 to 19 November 1968
    3 to 12 and 17 to 26 December 1968
    9 to 12 and 17 to 26 January 1969
    1 to 8 and 19 to 22 February 1969
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive - Phase II
    21 to 29 July 1966
    5 to 15 and 23 to 28 August 1966
    1 to 8 and 14 to 18 September 1966
    30 September to 10 October 1966
    15 to 23 December 1966
    3 to 14 January 1967
    Tet 69/Counteroffensive
    23 to 26 February 1969
    2 to 4 March 1969
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive - Phase III
    15 to 20 September 1967
    26 September to 5 October 1967
    27 October 1967
    2 to 10 December 1967
    21 to 25 and 29 January 1968
    Vietnam Winter-Spring 1970
    26 January to 2 February 1970
    19 to 26 February 1970
    4 to 7 and 18 to 21 March 1970
    27 March to 4 April 1970
    9 to 17 April 1970
    Tet Counteroffensive
    30 January to 9 February 1968
    15 to 23 February 1968
    4 to 9 March 1968
    Sanctuary Counteroffensive
    12 May 1970
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive - Phase V
    28 September to 1 October 1968
    9 to 11 and 15 to 21 October 1968
    28 October to 1 November 1968
     

  • Decommissioned in 1970
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 1 October 1970
  • Laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet
  • USS Neches earned nine battle stars for World War II service and nine campaign stars for Vietnam War service
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 15 December 1971, to Union Minerals & Alloys Corp. (PDX-924 dated 11 November 1971), for $65,184.50, withdrawn from the Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet, 3 January 1973
    Specifications:
    Displacement 6,809 t.(lt) 22,325 t.(fl)
    Length 520'
    Beam 68'
    Draft 30' 9"
    Speed 17.4 kts.
    Complement
    Officers 16
    Enlisted 212
    Largest Boom Capacity 10 t.
    Armament 1942
    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
    Armament 1968
    two single 3"50 cal dual purpose gun mounts forward
    Cargo Capacity 15,300 DWT
    Oil 117,000 Bbls
    Gasoline 689,000 Gals
    Fuel Capacity
    NSFO 9,500 Bbls
    Propulsion
    one Westinghouse geared turbine
    two Babcock & Wilcox header-type boilers, 450psi 742°
    double Westinghouse Main Reduction Gears Ship's Service Generators
    two turbo-drive 400Kw 230V A.C.
    one turbo-drive 50Kw 230V A.C.
    one Diesel-drive 50Kw 120V D.C.
    single propeller, 12,800shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    Neches 75k USS Harrison (DD-573) overtakes USS Neches (AO-47) to refuel while in the TG heading for the Gilberts invasion, 16 Nov 1943.
    Photo by Tom McCann.
    John Chiquoine
    Neches 297k USS Neches (AO-47) under way in the Pacific Ocean, date and location unknown. Dave Way, Curator Battleship Iowa BB 61 Pacific Battleship Center
    BB-55 North Carolina 71USS Neches (AO-47) refueling USS North Carolina (BB-55) mid-Pacific, date unknown. Neches' camouflage is measure 32 design 5AO. US Navy photo
    Neches 108k USS Neches (AO-47) circa 1955 with an armament of two 3"/50, two quadruple 40mm, and four 20mm twin mounts. All of the guns except two 20mm twin mounts were aft. The cruiser on the left is USS Juneau (CLAA-119).
    US Naval History and Heritage Command Photo No. Unknown. courtesy Shipscribe.com.
    Mike Green
    Winston 107k USS Neches (AO-47), USS Winston (AKA-94) and USS Monticello (LSD-35) moored in the harbor at San Diego, CA., in 1962. Tommy Trampp
    Winston 111k
    Neches 56k Overhead view of USS Neches (AO-47) under way in WestPac, circa October 1963 - March 1964. Richard Miller BMCS USNR Ret.
    Neches 94k USS Neches (AO-47), mid-Pacific, near International dateline, 19 February 1966 ©Richard Leonhardt
    Neches 60k USS Neches (AO-47), USS Passumpsic (AO-107) and USS Taluga (AO-62) steam together in 1968, location unknown.
    US Navy photo.
    Robert Hurst
    Neches 103k USS Neches (AO-47) near Subic Bay, Philippines, 18 February 1970.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command, Photo No. K-81888, courtesy Shipscribe.com.
    Mike Green

    USS Neches (AO-47)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01CAPT. Curley Jr., John Joseph16 September 1942 - 28 November 1942
    02CAPT. Emory, Campbell Dallas28 November 1942 - 7 July 1943
    03CDR. Hansen, Hedley George7 July 1943 - June 1946
    05CDR. Luther, Roger Williams, USNRJune 1947 - ?
    06CAPT. Scull, Gifford19 May 1949 - 10 May 1950
     Decommissioned10 July 1950 - 3 June 1951
    08CAPT. Fellows Jr., John Benjamin :RADM3 January 1951 - 20 June 1952
    09CAPT. Bruchez, Ernest Valentine 20 June 1952 - 13 June 1953
    11CDR. Hamilton Jr., George BenjaminNovember 1956 - November 1957
     DecommissionedJune 1955 - 24 November 1961
    14CAPT. Zullinger, John Richard24 November 1961 - 1962
    15CAPT. Prickett, Sam Lee1962 - December 1963
    16CAPT. Connolly III, Bartholomew JosephDecember 1963 - March 1965
    17CAPT. Rowe, Robert Arnoldno dates
    18CAPT. Ruebsamen, Darrel Deanno dates
    19CAPT. Stanley, Donald Curryno dates
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

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

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    USS Neches AO-47 Association
    MARAD Vessel History Database
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To the Service Force Ship Type Index Back To The Fleet Oiler (AO) Photo Index
    Comments, Suggestions, E-mail Webmaster.
    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 27 October 2017