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Dedicated to the men who manned the ships
and the embarked composite squadrons
of Task Unit 77.4.3 (Taffy III)
on October 25, 1944

 

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Online since June 4, 1996

BOSAMAR logo:  USS GAMBIER BAY (CVE 73)
takes a pounding 
from the IJN heavy cruiser CHIKUMA

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COPYRIGHT © 1976 UNITED STATES NAVAL INSTITUTE

U.S.S. GAMBIER BAY (CVE 73)
"The Final Hour"
By C. G. Evers

 

Dye-colored splashes of shells fired by
Japanese battleships straddle the
escort carrier on 25 October 1944,
during the Battle of Leyte Gulf.


USED BY PERMISSION

In remembrance;
for action against the
Imperial Japanese Navy Centre Force
on October 25, 1944

Taffy III lost in action; 898 gallant men

"The high degree of skill, the unflinching courage, the inspired determination to go down fighting, of the officers and men under my command cannot be too highly praised."

Action Report - Rear Admiral C.A.F. "Ziggy" Sprague, U.S. Navy

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12 Comments
Added by Robert Coleman
May 22, 2012

Just finished reading James Hornfischer's "The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors". What an outstanding piece of work on the Battle off Samar and Leyte Gulf in general.

Great website.

Thanks
Added by Burkesister
June 22, 2012

My brother, Nelson H Burke (aka Jack) USS KALININ BAY (CVE-68) was in the Battle of Leyte Gulf. He survived Kamikaze strikes, helped extinguish fire down below, saving many of his shipmates. He received multiple awards and was a very proud retired Sailor but never one to discuss much about those horrible times. We love him dearly even though he passed away a few years ago.
Added by Anonymous
July 2, 2012

What our brave sailors did w/so few ships (6 escort carriers, 3 destroyers & the destroyer escorts) is simply amazing! Especially the Johnston, blown apart & still sailing straight into such a superior IJN force. It's no wonder her captain was awarded the Medal of Honor. Also, what a great tribute that a Japanese commander saluted the US men & ship as an enemies show of respect for an incredible fight! This, along with Midway, is my 2 favorite WWII stories.
Added by Robert, Buenos Aires.
August 3, 2012

I've read and studied this feat with admiration. The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors became my favorite book. GREAT SITE!
Added by Rick Carr
August 16, 2012

Thank you for these fantastic photos. Had a relative aboard the Samuel B. Roberts, his name was Paul Henry Carr. He was killed in the battle and went down with the ship. These photos help keep his memory and those of our other sailors alive.

Webmaster: See info about Paul Henry Carr in Chapter 10 of my online book.
http://www.bosamar.com/pages/bosc10
Added by macdaddy
January 1, 2013

My father was fcr2c aboard the Heermann, and never talked about this to anyone, after he passed I was amazed when I saw the documentary the last of the tin can soldiers. What a horrendous confrontation that was, god rest his soul.
Added by S D Elmes
January 13, 2013

I lost my uncle Norman Peden on the USS Johnston.
Added by wayne
January 31, 2013

I'm in my second reading of "The Las Stand of the Tin Can Sailors." Great book and a great source of pride to this old Tin Can Sailor. Today I was at Staples getting some ink cartridges for my printer. When I got out of my vehicle the man in the next car opened his door and said "hello Navy," noting my Navy Retired ball cap. We chatted for a short time and he began to tell me of his Navy time, on board the Gambier Bay, his name was Earnest Claude "Buddy" Burney. We discussed the Battle off Samar during the Leyte Campaign, me of my book learning and he of his personal experience. He told me of his abandoning ship and spending three days in the water before rescue. A miraculous meeting in Crestview, FL so far away from that Battle. Buddy is a real gentleman and we had a great time, one old sailor with another. Different generations perhaps but still "Ship Mates."
Added by Allen A. Hesson
February 2, 2013

My cousin, Earl E. Hesson, was on the Gambier Bay that day. He told of abandoning ship & the survivors time in the water before rescue. He also said that when the shelling first started, some of the Jap shells went right through the ship without exploding as the Japs thought they were shelling a ship with heavier armament.
Added by walvir1
September 12, 2013

My father served aboard the Kitkun Bay CVE71 in the battle of Leyte Gulf. I was wondering if there are any sailors still alive who were aboard the Kitkun Bay.
Added by jeffrey
November 22, 2013

My father was aboard the White Plains cve-66 he passed away at the first reunion for this ship if anyone knew Charles Lee during his service, please let me know, thank you and god bless all you brave gentlemen.
Added by Anonymous
March 18, 2014

wooowww this is perfect thanks. I'm doing a report with pictures.

Webmaster: Please credit this website.
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