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NavSource Online: Escort Carrier Photo Archive

(later CVU-76 and AKV-26)

USS Kadashan Bay (CVE-76)
Contributed by Gerd Matthes, Germany

Flag Hoist/Radio Call Sign: November - Kilo - X-Ray - Delta

Unit Awards, Campaign and Service Medals and Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row: American Campaign Medal / Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (3 stars) / World War II Victory Medal
2nd Row: Navy Occupation Service Medal ("Asia" clasp) / Philippine Presidential Unit Citation / Philippine Liberation Medal (2 stars)
(More info)

Casablanca Class Escort Carrier
Awarded Laid down Launched Commissioned Decommissioned Stricken
18 Jun 1942 2 Sep 1943 11 Dec 1943 18 Jan 1944 14 Jun 1946 1 Aug 1959
Builder: Kaiser Co., Inc., Vancouver, Wash.

(1944, as built)
Displacement: 7,800 tons standard; 10,900 tons full load
Dimensions (wl): 490' x 65' x 20' 9.25" (full load)  /  149.4 x 19.8 x 6.3 meters
Dimensions (max.): 498' 10" x 108' 1"  /  152 x 32.9 meters
Armor: None
Power plant: 4 boilers (285 psi); Skinner Uniflow reciprocating steam engines; 2 shafts; 9,000 ihp (design)
Speed: 19+ knots
Endurance: 10,240 nm @ 15 knots
Armament: 1 single 5"/38 gun mount; 8 twin 40-mm/56-cal gun mounts; 20 single 20-mm/70-cal gun mounts
Aircraft: 21 (VC-20, March 1944)
Aviation facilities: 2 elevators; 1 hydraulic catapult (H 2-1); Mk 4 mod. 5 arresting gear (9 wires, 3 barriers)
Crew: 760–860 (ship's company + air wing)

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CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

CVE-76 was named for a bay located on Chichagof Island, on the south side of Tenakee Inlet, Alaska. In turn, the bay was named by the U.S. Forestry Service (1929) for Paul K. Kadashan, a Tlingit native who applied for a homestead in the area in 1915.

CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

At the first nighttime launching since November 16, 1942, Hull 322, soon to be USS Kadashan Bay (CVE-76) slips into the darkness shortly after midnight on Saturday, December 11, 1943.

(From "Bo's'n's Whistle," Vol. 3, No. 24; December 23, 1943; pages 8–9.)

Courtesy of Ron Gough,
Bea Dee, Ltd.,
Kaiser Vancouver / Swan Island & Oregon Shipyards website
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

Miss Audrey Ackerman, swing shift pickup truck driver in the hull materials department, representing the workers of the Kaiser Shipyards, christened Hull 322 the Kadashan Bay.

(From "Bo's'n's Whistle," Vol. 3, No. 23; December 9, 1943; page 6.)

Courtesy of Ron Gough,
Bea Dee, Ltd.,
Kaiser Vancouver / Swan Island & Oregon Shipyards website
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

Jeanne Catherine Tyree was a welder at the Kaiser Shipyards in Vancouver.

J. Thomas Johns for his grandmother, Jeanne Catherine Tyree
World War II
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay
43k Undated. At dock, showing her narrow beam. USN
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

A port broadside photo of USS Kadashan Bay (CVE-76) in San Diego on 17 June 1944. This camouflage is Measure 33 Design 10A using navy blue (5-N), haze gray (5-H) and pale gray (5-P). The pattern near the stern makes it appear as if the ship is rotated enough to see part of the stern.

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), photo # 80-G-365800.

Courtesy of Bob Heflin, USS Kadashan Bay website
Larger copy courtesy of C. Lee Johnson, Ships of the U.S. Navy in WWII "Dazzle" Camouflage, via Mike Green
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

Entering a floating drydock at Manus, Admiralty Islands, November 19, 1944.

Courtesy of Bob Heflin, USS Kadashan Bay website
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

On 8 January 1945 a kamikaze (pointed to by an arrow) aimed his death dive at USS Kadashan Bay (CVE-76). Despite repeated hits, the enemy plane plunged into the ship amidships directly below the bridge. After an hour and a half of feverish damage control effort, fires and flooding were checked, and the escort carrier returned to Leyte 12 January for temporary repairs before returning San Francisco 13 February for complete overhaul. Photographed from USS Marcus Island (CVE-77).

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), photo # 80-G-273079.

Courtesy of Bob Heflin, USS Kadashan Bay website
Larger copy courtesy of NARA
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

Being struck by a kamikaze on January 8, 1945. Photo taken at moment of impact.

Then AMM1c Walter E. Skeldon recalls: "I was the Arresting Gear crew leader (senior rated man in A G.) My collateral duty was in charge of Repair Party #1. The arresting gear crew leader (according to the ship's billeting) was to be a chief. Repair #1 leader was to be a chief. But chiefs were hard to find and I was too young (20) so I filled those billets as first class. After we were hit by a kamikaze at the waterline starboard side, below the island structure, I was ordered to take my Repair Party and pump out the flooded compartment. Who or how many were behind me I do not remember, but there were at least ten shipmates behind me. How many pumps, hoses or other equipment I do not remember; perhaps three, or four, or six, portable and/or electric submersible pumps. BUT down we went, as ordered. I was on the ladder, in the compartment, water just one step lower when I squatted down and looked out the hole (9 by 17 feet) in the side of the ship. I had seen enough. Ordered every one to back out and up. I went to the nearest telephone and called Damage Control, identified myself and reported that 'if I start pumping the compartment I will have to pump the whole South China Sea because I can see the whole fleet through the hole. Half of the hole is below the waterline.' I was ordered to return to the flight deck and stand by. Which we did. Rep.#2 were finishing up with some small fires on the hangar deck. Rep.#3 & 4 were shoring up the engine room bulkheads."

"What a day."

CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

View 45° off centerline, San Francisco, California, 8 April 1945. Photo # 2257-45-S4. Kadashan Bay is camouflaged in Measure 21.

Courtesy of Bob Heflin, USS Kadashan Bay website
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

USS Kadashan Bay (CVE-76) underway transporting aircraft. Photo is dated 12 April 1946. Location unknown.

US Navy and Marine Corps Museum/Naval Aviation Museum, Photo No.1996.488.034.021. Robert L. Lawson Photograph Collection.

Katie B "is shown transporting Lockheed PV-2 Harpoon patrol-bombers and Douglas JD-1 Invader target tugs." (Thanks to Robert Hurst.)

Mike Green
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

USS Kadashan Bay (CVE-76). Although "personalized" for each ship, this is in fact a generic image of the Casablanca-class CVEs.

J. Thomas Johns for his grandmother, Jeanne Catherine Tyree
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay
68k In reserve, at South Boston Naval Annex. May 1958. ©Richard Leonhardt
CVE-76 Kadashan Bay

For more photos and information about this ship, see:

Read the USS Kadashan Bay (CVE-76 / CVU-76 / AKV-26) DANFS History entry

Crew Contact and Reunion Information
Contact: Zack Zink, Assn. Sec.
Address: 530 5th Street
Clarkston, WA 99403-1922
Phone: 509-758-2654
E-mail: Zack Zink
Web site:  

Related Links
Hazegray & Underway World Aircraft Carrier Pages by Andrew Toppan.
USS Kadashan Bay CVE76/VC20 by Bob Heflin
Escort Carrier Sailors & Airmen Association

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Last update: 13 July 2019