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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive
USS Centaurus (AKA-17)
International Radio Call Sign:
November - Xray - Oscar - Juliet
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons
Precedence of awards is from left to right
Top Row - China Service Medal (extended) - American Campaign Medal
Bottom Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (6) - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp)
USS Centaurus (AKA-17) was manned by the US Coast Guard during World War II
Andromeda Class Attack Cargo Ship:
Laid done as a Maritime Commission type (C2-S-B1) hull, under Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 206) at Federal Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co., Kearny, N.J.
Assigned to the US Navy as AK-66
Launched, 3 September 1943
Commissioned USS Centaurus (AKA-17), 21 October 1943, CAPT. George Evans McCabe, USCG, in command
During WWII USS Centaurus was assigned to Asiatic-Pacific Theater;
TransRon Thirteen, COMO. M. O. Carlson USN (16);
TransDiv Thirty-Eight, CAPT. P. P. Welsh USN (18) and participated in the following campaigns:
|Campaign and Dates
||Campaign and Dates
|Marshall Islands operation
Occupation of Kwajalein and Majuro Atolls, 31 January to 5 February 1944
Capture and occupation of Guam, 21 to 27 July 1944
|Bismarck Archipelago operation
Admiralty Island landings, 5 to 9 April 44
|Western Caroline Islands operation
Capture and occupation of southern Palau Islands - Peleliu, 6 September to 14 October 1944
Aitape, Humboldt Bay, Tanahmerah Bay, 21 to 27 April and 1 to 5 May 1944
|Okinawa Gunto operation
Assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto, 1 April to 14 June 1945
Following World War II USS Centaurus was assigned to Occupation and China service in the Far East for the following periods:
Navy Occupation Service Medal
China Service Medal (extended)
|26 to 29 December 1945||11 to 17 October 1945
| ||1 to 25 December 1945
Decommissioned, 30 April 1946, at New York City, N.Y.
Struck from the Naval Register, date unknown
Returned to the Maritime Commission, 11 September 1946, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Hudson River Group, Jones Point, N.Y.
Sold to US Lines, 27 February 1948, renamed SS Pioneer Bay
Renamed SS American Gunner in October 1956
Deactivated, 21 September 1962, at the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Hudson River Group, Jones Point, N.Y.
Final Disposition, sold 1 July 1970, to Aguilar Y. Peris S.L. for scrapping at Valencia, Spain
USS Centaurus received six battle stars for World War II service
Displacement 6,556 t.(lt), 14,200 t.(lt)
Length 459' 2"
Draft 26' 4"
Speed 16.5 kts.
Largest Boom Capacity 30 t.
Cargo Capacity 4,895 DWT
non-refrigerated 420,000 Cu. ft.
one single 5"/38 cal dual purpose gun mount
four single 3'?50 cal dual purpose gun mounts
eighteen single 20mm AA gun mounts
Fuel Capacity NSFO 11,010
one De Laval steam turbine
two Combustion Engineering D-type boilers, 465psi 765°
double De Laval Main Reduction Gears
three turbo-drive 300Kw 120V/240V D.C. Ship's Service Generators
single shaft, 6,000shp
|Click On Image
For Full Size Image
|USS Centaurus (AKA-17)
||USS Centaurus (AKA-17) underway, date and location unknown.
US Coast Guard photo
|Coast Guard Historian web site
||Ex-USS Centaurus (AKA-17) underway while in commercial as the US Lines SS American Gunner, date and location unknown.
Original copyright belonged to the late British ship photo dealer Alex Duncan.
USS Centaurus (AKA-17)
DANFS history entry located at the US Naval History and Heritage Command
|01||CAPT. McCabe George Evans USCG :RADM||20 October 1943 - 28 October 1944|
|02||CDR. Gray, John Paul USCG ||28 October 1944 - June 1945|
|03||CAPT. Maley, Kenneth Paul USCG :RADM||21 July 1945 - January 1946|
|Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves
Crew Contact And Reunion Information
U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log
Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
U.S. Coast Guard Historian's Office - USS Centaurus AKA-17
Last Updated 12 April 2013
This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo|