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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

USS Estero (AKL-5)
USS Estero (AG-134) (1947 - 1949)

Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - National Defense Service Medal - Korean Service Medal (7) - Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (2-Taiwan Straits)
Bottom Row - Republic of Vietnam Presidential Unit Citation (Ribbon of Friendship) - United Nations Service Medal - Republic of Korea War Service Medal (retroactive)

Camano Class Light Cargo Ship:
  • Laid down, date unknown as FS-275 for the US Army at Wheeler Shipbuilding Corp., Whitestone, Long Island, N.Y.
  • Delivered to the US Army Transportation Service, date unknown
  • Acquired by the US Navy in March 1947
  • Commissioned Miscellaneous Auxiliary USS Estero (AG-134), 5 July 1947, LTjg H. E. Toponce, in command
  • Reclassified Light Cargo Ship (AKL-5), 31 March 1949
  • During the Korean War USS Estero participated in the following campaigns:

    Korean War Campaigns
    Campaign and Dates Campaign and Dates
    North Korean Aggression
    18 September to 5 October 1950
    Korean Defense Summer-Fall 1952
    1 to 2 May 1952
    11-12 June 1952
    1 to 2 November 1952
    Inchon Landing
    14 to 17 September 1950
    Third Korean Winter
    9 to 10 March 1953
    UN Summer-Fall Offensive
    21 September 19
    3 to 4 October 1951
    12 October 1951
    6 to 7 November 1951
    12 to 13 November 1951
    Korean Summer-Fall 1953
    17 May 1953
    14 June 1953
    19 June 1953
    22 to 24 June 1953
    9 July 1953
    Second Korean Winter
    22 to 25 December 1951
    20 January 1952
    29 to 30 April 1952

  • USS Estero participated in Operation "Passage to Freedom" 25 August to 2 September 1954
  • Decommissioned, 22 January 1960
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 1 February 1960
  • Final Disposition, fate unknown
  • USS Estero earned seven battle stars for Korean War service
    Displacement 550 t.
    Length 177'
    Beam 33'
    Draft 10'
    Speed 12 kts.
    Complement 42
    two 500hp GM Cleveland Division 6-278A 6-cyl V6 Diesel engines
    twin propellers

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    Estero 18k USS Estero (AKL-5), underway at Sasebo, Japan, 23 October 1953.
    Cropped US National Archives photo

    USS Estero (AG-134 / AKL-5)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LTjg. Toponce, Harvey Earl5 July 1947 - ?
    02LT. Watson, Tom, USN1950 - 18 October 1952
    03LT. Buccini, Angelo, USN18 October 1952 - 14 February 1954
    04LT. Denham, John George1955
    05LT. Brown, Nicholas (Nick)1958
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information Web Sites
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 18 July 2014