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NavSource Online: Patrol Craft Escort
Photo Archive

Contributed by Mike Smolinski

Amherst (PCE[R]-853)

Amherst call sign:
November - Xray - Lima - Golf


Amherst served the Navies of the United States, South Vietnam and the Philippines.

Datu Marikudo call sign:
Delta - Uniform - Papa - Foxtrot

PCE(R)-848 Class Patrol Craft Escort (Rescue):

  • Originally planned as PCE-853 but reclassified PCE(R)-853 in June 1943
  • Laid down 16 November 1943 by Pullman Standard Car Manufacturing Co., Chicago, Illinois
  • Launched, 18 March 1944
  • Commissioned USS PCE(R)-853, 15 June 1944 at New Orleans, LA
  • Decommissioned in October 1945 at Green Cove, FL and laid up in the Atlantic Reserve Fleet
  • Placed in service in July 1947 as a Naval Reserve training ship assigned to the 4th Naval District (Philadelphia)
  • Recommissioned, 28 November 1950
  • Named Amherst 15 February 1956
  • Decommissioned, 6 February 1970
  • Struck from the Navy Register 3 June 1970 and transferred to South Vietnam as Van Kiep II (HQ 14)
  • Escaped to the Philippines after fall of South Vietnam and renamed BRP Datu Marikudo (PS 23)
  • Fate unknown.


  • Displacement 903 t.
  • Length 184' 6"
  • Beam 33' 1"
  • Draft 9' 5"
  • Speed 15.7 kts.
  • Complement 99
  • Armament: One 3"/50 dual purpose gun mount, two 40mm gun mounts, two depth charge tracks and two depth charge projectors
  • Propulsion: Two 900bhp General Motors 12-567A diesel engines, Falk single reduction gear, two shafts.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    USS PCE(R)-853
    PCE(R)-853 109k After launching. William Boynton
    PCE(R)-853 109k Commissioning pamphlet
    PCE(R)-853 109k
    PCE(R)-853 109k
    PCE(R)-853 109k Photo caption reads: "Lt. Boynton coaches Rear Admiral Anderson on operating the blinker signal on the bridge."
    Photo from a Pullman Company magazine
    PCE(R)-853 66k . .
    PCE(R)-853 63k c. 1944. Tom Kermen
    PCE(R)-853 110k PCE(R)-853 approaches the USS Nevada (BB 36) and LCT-1405 to receive casualties on 30 March 1945 off Kerama Retto during the Okinawa campaign
    National Archives photo from the October 2009 edition of Naval History magazine
    Joe Radigan
    PCE(R)-853 67k Drawing by J. M. Caiella from the October 2009 edition of Naval History magazine
    PCE(R)-853 108k c. March/June 1945
    Kerama Retto, Okinawa
    Photo from the book, "The Escort Carriers in Action"
    William Boynton
    USS Amherst (PCE[R] 853)
    PCE(R)-853 64k c. 1960s Historical Collections of the Great Lakes
    PCE(R)-853 83k Welcome Aboard pamphlet. Russ Padden
    PCE(R)-853 131k
    PCE(R)-853 128k
    PCE(R)-853 165k Detroit, MI. c. 1963 Harold Pfrender
    PCE(R)-853 93k Welcome Aboard pamphlet. Russ Padden
    PCE(R)-853 105k
    PCE(R)-853 211k
    PCE(R)-853 183k c. 1966
    Photo from the 1966/1967 edition of Jane's Fighting Ships
    Robert Hurst
    Van Kiep II (HQ 14)
    PCE(R)-853 90k . Bill Toohey
    RR1 Box 240
    Clinton, Illinois 61727
    Datu Marikudo (PS 23)
    G-63 257k c. October 2007
    Cavite City, Philippines
    Romblon (PG 63), ex-PGM-41 inboard of Agusan (PG 61), ex-PGM-39. Datu Marikudo is in the background
    Edison Sy

    View the Amherst (PCE[R]-853)
    DANFS History entry located on the Haze Gray & Underway Web Site.
    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    Patrol Craft Sailors Association
    Back To The Main Photo Index Back To the Patrol Craft/Gunboat/Submarine Chaser Ship Index Back to the Patrol Craft Escort (Rescue) - (PCE[R]) Photo Index

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