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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USS Menkar (AK-123)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Hotel - Bravo - Zulu
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - American Campaign Medal
Bottom Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp)

USS Menkar (AK-123) was assigned to the Coast Guard in October 1944
Crater Class Cargo Ship:
  • Laid down, 17 November 1943, as SS John White, a Maritime Commission type (EC2-S-C1) hull, under Maritime Commission contract (MCE hull 1218) at St. Johns River Shipbuilding Co., Jacksonville, FL.
  • Launched, 31 December 1943
  • Acquired by the US Navy, 17 January 1944
  • Commissioned, USS Menkar (AK-123), 18 January 1944, for transit to her finishing yard, LCDR. Edward G. Gummer, USNR, (Ferry Command) in command
  • Decommissioned, 22 January, 1944, at Miami, FL.and converted for Naval Service at Dade Drydock Co., Miami, FL.
  • Recommissioned, 2 June 1944
  • Assigned to the US Coast Guard in October 1944 for loran station construction, LCDR Niels P. Thompsen, USCG in command
  • During World War II USS Menkar was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaign:

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaign
    Campaign and Dates
    Okinawa Gunto operation
    Assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto, 1 to 14 April 1945

  • Decommissioned, 15 April 1946
  • Delivered to the Maritime Commission, 15 April 1946, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Suisun Bay, Benecia, CA. name reverted to SS John White
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 1 May 1946
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 8 May 1962, to Union Minerals and Alloys Corp., removed, 22 May 1962, dismantled by Learner Co., at Oakland, CA.
  • USS Menkar earned one battle star for World War II service
    Displacement 4,023 t.(lt) 12,350 t.(fl)
    Length 441' 6"
    Beam 56' 11"
    Draft 28' 4"
    Speed 12.8 kts. (trial)
    Officers 24
    Enlisted 258
    Largest Boom Capacity 37 t.
    Cargo Capacity 5,420 DWT
    non-refrigerated 400,000 Cu ft.
    one single 5"/38 cal dual purpose gun mount
    four single 40mm AA gun mounts
    six single 20mm AA gun mounts
    Fuel Capacity
    NSFO 7,285 Bbls
    one General Machine Corp. vertical triple expansion reciprocating steam engine
    two Combustion Engineering header-type boilers, 220psi 450°
    Ship's Service Generators
    three turbo-drive 60Kw 120V D.C.
    single propeller, 2,500shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    SS John White
    Menkar 133k SS John White launching 31 December 1943 at St. Johns River Shipbuilding Co., Jacksonville, FL David Nixon
    USS Menkar (AK-123)
    Menkar 137k USS Menkar (AK-123) under way, date and location unknown. Note dazzle camouflage scheme.
    US Navy photo from DANFS
    Joe Radigan, MACM USN Ret.
    Menkar 1091k USS Menkar (AK-123) at anchor probably in Hampton Roads, VA. in July 1944. US Navy photo # 80-G-236739 taken by NAS Hampton Roads, VA., released July 13, 1944. National Museum of the US Navy

    USS Menkar (AK-123)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships
    Commanding Officers
     LCDR. Gummer, Edward GeorgeUSNR18 January 1944 - 22 January 1944
     Decommissioned 22 January 1944 - 2 June 1944
    01LCDR. Thompsen, Niels, P.USCG2 June 1944 - 26 July 1945
    02CDR. Krestensen, Jens B.USCG26 July 1945 - 15 April 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 Menkar AK-123
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 4 December 2015