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START OF REEL JOB NO. - Ale -{30- operator “44S DATE 2-26. 7f THIS MICROFILM IS THE PROPERTY OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT = 2 MICROFILMED BY NPPSO—NAVAL DISTRICT WASHINGTON MICROFILM SECTION S6-20S) WL YeTRURLE Qu Naren Quis Keer, Is DEASIFIEDS Ronse Paar iha Anne Ws Sieur Nemawar hecaes Wigan thts Gusto) o Nevy Denertment, OFtice of Chiat of Neva? Cnenations ha’ story Division (0P-29) Ship's Histories Section HISTORY OF USS SKATE (83 305) ‘The submarine SKATZ vas commissioned 15 apria igi at the Neve Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, California, under Commander ne DB. NcKinney. She teated her sound equipzent and conducted training drills end exercises there; then headed for Fear] Harbor. On 25 September 1943 she shoved off on her first wer patrol which vas conducted off Wake Island during one of the heavy carrier strikes ageinst that strongly fortified mid-Pecific Jap bastion. In the first operation of its kind ever carried out, the SKATE in three days rescued six Anerican eviators who had been shot down during the air strikes, The submarine, at the time vas under almost continuous bombardment by shore artillery and was frequently subjected to strefing by enemy aircraft, In the process of one of these rescues, Lieutenant Yjg) wiilis 2 Waxson III vas strafed and killed while actively assisting in picking up survivors froma rubber liferaft. After slightly more than a month on patrol, the ship returned to port on 29 October. Her second ver patrol, from 15 November 1943 to 7 January 1944, was conducted off Truk in the Carolines. Enemy merchant traffic to and from this base vas especially heavy, and the SKATE, immediately efter arriving on station, closed a fast convoy. In en aggressive attacl, she sank e 6,500 ton freighter, later, reconnoitering off one of the entrances to Truk's lagoon, she sighted two heevily ppotected carriers standing out, I spit of strong air and destroyer cover, the SKATE vent in submerged and fired her torpedoes, threesof them hitting one of the carriers tefore the submazine was forced by concentrated depth-charging and depth-bombing to retire. The SKATE was able to get in another good strike at the enemy, on Christms Dey. Executing hurried attack in the midat of a rain squall, she damaged a large vessel - later identified as the battleship YAMATO - with several torpedo hits. The SKATE's third war patrol was also conducted in the arca off the Carolines, from 5 February to 17 March 1944, Her command- ing officer at this time wes Comander W. P. Gruner, USN, vho bad relieved Commander McKinney, Again she was to be a thorn in the side of the Japanese Imperial Fleet. 16 February: 1944-she sigoted her quarry on the. horizon and nade aesuperblyiexeented: submerged attack at sundown, Three out of four torpedoes fired hit the light cruiser AGANO, stopping her deed in the water. As the SKATE maneuvered to escape AGANO was