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Navsource Online: Destroyer Escort Photo Archive

USS Menges (DE 320)

Flag Hoist / Radio Call Sign:
N - K - E - F
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row: Combat Action Ribbon (retroactive)
Second Row: American Campaign Medal - European-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal w/ 2 stars - WWII Victory Medal

Class: Edsall
Type: FMR (geared diesel, Fairbanks-Morse reverse gear drive, 3" guns)
Displacement: 1200 tons (light), 1590 tons (full)
Length: 300' (wl), 306' (oa)
Beam: 36' 10" (extreme)
Draft: 20' 6" (draft limit)
Propulsion: 4 Fairbanks-Morse Mod. 38d81/8 geared diesel engines, 4 diesel-generators, 6000 shp, 2 screws
Speed: 21 kts
Range: 9,100 nm @ 12 knots
Armament: 3 x 3"/50 Mk22 (1x3), 1 twin 40mm Mk1 AA, 8 x 20mm Mk 4 AA, 3 x 21" Mk15 TT (3x1), 1 Hedgehog Projector Mk10 (144 rounds), 8 Mk6 depth charge projectors, 2 Mk9 depth charge tracks
Complement: 8 / 201
Menges (DE 320) Building and Operational Data:
  • 22 March 1943: Keel laid by the Consolidated Steel Corp., Orange, Tex.
  • 15 June 1943: Launched and christened, sponsored by Mrs. Charles Menges, mother of the late Ensign Menges
  • 26 October 1943: Commissioned, Lcdr. Frank M. McCabe, USCG, in command
  • 03 May 1944: While 15½ miles astern of a convoy, she was hit at 0118 by an acoustic torpedo from U-371, killing 31 men and wounding 25 others. Towed to Bougie, Algeria by HMS Aspirant.
  • 23 June 1944: With temporary repairs made, departed Oran, Algeria under tow of Carib (AT 82) for New York.
  • 22 July 1944: Arrived at the Brooklyn Navy Yard, New York, N.Y. where the stern of torpedoed Holder (DE 401) was welded to Menges' forward section
  • 26 September 1944: Departed New York for shakedown at Casco Bay, Maine before rejoining the fleet
  • 18 March 1945: Menges, in company with Mosley (DE 321), Pride (DE 323), and Lowe (DE 325) sank the German submarine U-866, south of Nova Scotia
  • 27 October 1945: Celebrated Navy Day at New Bedford, Mass. in company with Porpoise (SS 172), Pike (SS 173), and Invade (AM 254)
  • March 1946: Arrived at Green Cove Springs, Fla., for assignment to the 16th (Inactive Reserve) Fleet
  • January 1947: Decommissioned at Green Cove Springs, Fla. after 3 years and 3 months of service
  • 02 January 1971: Struck from the NVR
  • 10 April 1972: Sold for scrapping
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    Size Image Description Contributed
    By And/Or Copyright
    Menges 23k Herbert Hugo Menges was born in Louisville, Ky. on 20 January 1917. He enlisted in the Naval Reserve as seaman second class at Robertson, Mo. on 03 July 1939. Appointed Naval Aviator on 24 July 1940, he was assigned to Fighting Squadron 6 (VF-6) on USS Enterprise (CV 6) 28 November 1940. Ensign Menges was killed during the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor 07 December 1941.

    USS Menges (DE 320) (1943 - 1947) was the first ship to be named in his honor.

    Bill Gonyo
    Downey, Cal.

    Assoc. Researcher
    Menges 110k undated

    (official U.S.C.G. photo)
    Mike Green
    Port Angeles, Wash.
    Menges 185k 20 April 1944: the Mediterranean - One of many rescued by Coast Guardsmen of two Destroyer Escorts during a German bomber attack off the coast of North Africa, a U.S. Navy seaman relaxes as two Coast Guardsmen scrape a thick coating of oil from his body. The survivor's ship, the USS Lansdale (DD 426), was sunk by Nazi planes. The Coast Guardsmen in this picture are: Virgil Mathis (left), Motor Machinist's Mate, of St. Augustine, Fla.; and Melvin Howard of Pittsburg, Kansas. These men are on board the Coast Guard-manned Destroyer Menges (DE 320), when it picked up 119 survivors of the ill-fated destroyer Lansdale. Virgil Mathis later was himself a survivor when Menges was torpedoed by a Nazi submarine on 03 May 1944.

    (U.S. Coast Guard Photo #2140 by PhoM1/c Arthur Green, USCGR. Photo courtesy of the U.S. Coast Guard.)
    Bill Gonyo
    Downey, Cal.

    Assoc. Researcher
    Menges 165k Menges as she looked from midships and above while being towed to North Africa after being struck by an acoustic torpedo fired from U-371.

    (Top: U.S. Navy Photo; Bottom: U.S. Coast Guard photo)
    Menges 466k
    Menges 703k May 1944: USS Menges (DE 320) moored at Algiers in early May, awaiting temporary repairs. The ship left, under tow by USS Carib (AT 82), on 23 June 1944, bound for the New York Navy Yard.

    (official U.S. Navy photo)
    Mike Green
    Port Angeles, Wash.
    Menges 113k Menges being assisted by a Navy tugboat.

    (U.S. Navy Photo)
    Bill Gonyo
    Downey, Cal.

    Assoc. Researcher
    Menges 100k Menges (left) and USS Holder (DE 401) (right) in drydock prior to their "melding." Note the welded repair plate across the Menges' stern area which was used during her tow across the Atlantic.

    (U.S. Navy Photo)
    Menges 178k August 1944: Brooklyn, N.Y. - Photo of the USS Menges (DE 320) in Drydock 2 at the Brooklyn Navy Yard with the temporary stern towing repair plate removed. The ship is being prepared to be melded to the stern of the decommissioned Holder (DE 401).

    (U.S. Navy Photo)
    Mike Green
    Port Angeles, Wash.
    Menges 166k Holder's stern is transplanted to Menges.

    (U.S. Navy Photo)
    Bill Gonyo
    Downey, Cal.

    Assoc. Researcher
    Menges 101k 25 September 1944: at sea, Atlantic - Overhead port side view of USS Menges (DE 320), as seen from an aircraft of squadron ZP-11, 25 miles northeast of Portsmouth, Massachusetts. She is wearing modified MS 32/3D camouflage scheme. During her battle damage repairs the triple torpedo tubes were replaced with a 40mm Bofors. Her short main mast carries a HF/DF unit.

    (U.S. Navy photo #80-G-280104 and 80-G-280103 from the National Archives and Records Administration, College Park, Md., courtesy of C. Lee Johnson, Ships of the U.S. Navy in WWII “Dazzle” Camouflage)
    Mike Green
    Port Angeles, Wash.
    Menges 142k
    Menges 285k 'DOOMED' COAST GUARD-MANNED DE BACK IN ACTION AFTER 'SURGICAL MIRACLE' MAKES ONE SHIP FROM TWO: BEFORE - The Coast Guard-manned destroyer escort USS Menges, thought doomed after being torpedoed in May 1944, is back in action again today as a result of a 'miracle surgical operation' which took two torpedoed DE's and made them into one healthy, fighting ship. Shown here from the mast, looking aft, in Mediterranean convoy two weeks before falling victim to a German sub, Menges lost a third of her hull when the underwater missile ripped into her stern. The Coast guard skipper refused to abandon ship. After transferring dead and wounded the stricken vessel was towed to North Africa and then to New York. There, the Navy Bureau of Ships conceived the plan of making one whole ship out of two disabled ones, and American shipyard workers did the job. Half of the USS Holder, another torpedoed DE in dock for repairs, and the floating portion of the Menges were joined. Today, two men o' war fight as one."

    (no date; CG Photo No. 4624)
    Bill Gonyo
    Downey, Cal.

    Assoc. Researcher

    Menges History
    View the USS Menges (DE 320) DANFS history entry located on the Naval History and Heritage Command web site.
    View the official War History of USS Menges as submitted by the ship at war's end.

    Menges' Only Commanding Officer
    Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves
    Dates of Command Commanding Officers
    1.) 26 Oct. 1943 - 25 Jun. 1945Lcdr. Frank M. McCabe (USCG) (Comm. CO) (Scituate, Mass.)

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information

    Note About Contacts

    Contact information is compiled from various sources over a period of time and may, or may not, be correct. Every effort has
    been made to list the newest contact. However, our entry is only as good as the latest information that's been sent to us. We list
    only a contact for the ship if one has been sent to us. We do NOT have crew lists, rosters, or deck logs available. Please see the
    Frequently Asked Questions section on NavSource's Main Page for that information.

    Additional Resources

    Tin Can Sailors
    The U.S. Navy Memorial
    Destroyer Escort Sailors Association
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    The Destroyer History Foundation
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    This Page Created And Maintained By Mike Smolinski
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    by Paul R. Yarnall, All Rights Reserved.
    Page Last Updated: 22 January 2020