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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USS Rio Grande (AOG-3)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Uniform - Mike - Juliet
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - China Service Medal (extended) - American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1)
Second Row - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp) - National Defense Service Medal
Third Row - Korean Service Medal - United Nations Service Medal - Republic of Korea War Service Medal (retroactive)

Patapsco Class Gasoline Tanker:
  • Laid down, 30 June 1942, as a Maritime Commission type (T1-MT-M1) tanker hull, under a Maritime Commission contract at Seattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding Co., Seattle, WA.
  • Launched, 23 September 1942
  • Commissioned USS Rio Grande (AOG-3), 10 April 1943, LCDR. Lawrence J. Hasse USNR in command
  • During World War II USS Rio Grande was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaign:

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaign
    Campaign and Dates
    Western New Guinea operation
    Supporting and consolidating operations designated by Com 7th Flt, 15 September to 15 November 1944

  • Decommissioned, 28 June 1946
  • Laid up in the Reserve Fleet
  • Recommissioned, 12 October 1950, at Norfolk, VA., LT. Milton L. Elchinger USN in command
  • USS Rio Grande was assigned to Occupation and China service in the Far East for the following periods:

    Navy Occupation Service Medal

    China Service Medal (extended)
    8 to 13 February 19538 to 13 February 1953
  • Decommissioned, 6 January 1956
  • Laid up, 18 March 1960, in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, Olympia, WA.
  • Struck from the Naval Register, date unknown
  • Custody transferred to MARAD, 30 June 1960, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 7 February 1972 to General Metals, Tacoma, WA., delivered 3 March 1972
    Displacement 1,850 t.(lt) 4,335 t.(fl)
    Length 310' 9"
    Beam 48' 6"
    Draft 15' 8"
    Speed 14 kts.
    Officers 9
    Enlisted 124
    Largest Boom Capacity 3 t.
    four single 3"/50 cal dual purpose guns
    twelve single 20mm AA gun mounts
    Cargo Capacity 2,010 DWT
    Oil 1,000 Bbls
    Gasoline 667,000 Gals
    Fuel Capacity
    Diesel 2,240 Bbls
    two General Motors Diesel 16-278A engines
    single Fairbanks Morse Main Reduction Gears
    Ship's Service Generators
    two Diesel-drive 225Kw 120V/240V D.C.
    one Diesel-drive 10Kw 240V D.C.
    two propellers, 3,300shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    Rio Grande
    156k USS Rio Grande (AOG-3) moored pierside at Kodiak, Alaska Territory, 2 May 1943.
    U.S. Naval History and Heritage Command. Photo # 80-G-79698
    Robert Hurst
    Rio Grande 51k USS Rio Grande (AOG-3) underway, date and location unknown. Robert Hurst
    Rio Grande
    155k Numerous U.S. Navy ships at a West Coast Naval Base in the early 1950s as seen through the SC-radar aboard the gasoline tanker USS Rio Grande (AOG-3). Fleet oiler USS Cacapon (AO-52), behind Rio Grande, attack transport USS Telfair (APA-210) across the pier from Cacapon and an unidentified fleet oiler across the pier from Rio Grande, and in the roadstead two attack transports/attack cargo ships and the dock landing ship USS Fort Marion (LSD-22) (far right).
    U.S. Navy Bureau of Ships photo 19-NN-AOG-3 Rio Grande-152928. from the holdings of the National Archives and Records Administration, cataloged under the National Archives Identifier (NAID) 7574664.
    Robert Hurst

    USS Rio Grande (AOG-3)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LCDR. Hasse, Lawrence John, USNR10 April 1943 - 26 June 1943
    02LT. Dillon Jr., Daniel, USNR26 June 1943 - 1 June 1944
    03LT. Lawton, Thomas Paul, USNR1 June 1944 - 1 July 1945
    04LTjg. Cooper, Neil Stewart, USNR1 July 1945 - 1 November 1945
     Decommissioned28 June 1946 - 12 October 1950
    05LT. Elchinger, Milton Lee, USN12 October 1950 - ?
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    Fleet Tankers Association
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    MARAD Vessel History Database
    Back to the Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To The Service Force Ship Type Index Back To The Gasoline Tanker (AOG) Photo Index
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 20 October 2023