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William Frederick Halsey, Jr.
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Naval Orientation - Military manual for administrative purposes
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12966_51
Pacific.  (However,  sporadic  action  on  or  near Guadalcanal   continued   into   the   following February.)  Halsey  conducted  brilliantly  planned and   consistently   sustained   offensives   through December  1943.  Halsey’s  forces  secured  the  South Pacific   area   by   driving   the   enemy   steadily northward   while   occupying   strategic   positions throughout  the  Solomons. After  Halsey  led  his  forces  to  victory  at Guadalcanal, President Roosevelt nominated him for the unheard of fourth star. Having more than four full admirals on active duty in the Navy was unheard  of,  and  we  already  had  them—King, Nimitz, Stark, and Ingersoll. A grateful Congress approved  the  nomination  anyhow. In June 1944 Halsey assumed command of the Third Fleet. Beginning in August, his forces left a trail of enemy ruin and destruction. Starting at Palau  (a  small  group  of  islands  north  of  New Guinea) and the south China Sea, they went up through the Philippines, Formosa, and Okinawa. They inflicted greater loss on the Japanese navy than had ever before been suffered by any fleet. In a magnificent sweep into enemy waters between August 1944 and January 1945, the Third Fleet destroyed  4,370  enemy  aircraft  and  sank  82 combatant ships and 327 auxiliaries. That was a sharp  contrast  to  the  United  States’  loss  of  449 aircraft  and  the  light  cruiser  Princeton. After the Okinawa campaign, Halsey headed for Tokyo to conduct preinvasion operations. His fast  carrier  task  force  was  the  greatest  mass  of sea power ever assembled. It included three task groups,  each  consisting  of  five  carriers  and  a battleship-cruiser-destroyer  screen.  Units  of  the British  Pacific  Fleet  joined  his  forces  in  July,  with Halsey  in  overall  command.  The  ships  and  planes of  Task  Force  38  blasted  every  industry  and resource that enabled Japan to make war. They knocked  out  remnants  of  the  once  mighty Japanese fleet, found hiding in camouflage nets throughout   the   length   of   the   Honshu   Island. When  the  “cease-fire”  order  was  flashed  on  15 August  1945,  Halsey’s  forces  had  destroyed  or damaged  nearly  3,000  aircraft  and  sunk  or disabled  1,650  combatant  and  merchant  ships. Halsey’s   actions   were   characteristically audacious  and  brilliantly  planned,  exemplifying his  slogan  to  “Hit  hard,  hit  fast,  hit  often!” In recognition of his exceptional war record, Admiral  Halsey  was  nominated  for  the  grade  of Fleet Admiral in November 1945. After the Senate confirmed  his  nomination,  he  took  the  oath  as Fleet Admiral on 11 December 1945. He became the  fourth,  and  last,  officer  to  hold  that  grade. After  his  return  to  the  United  States  in October   1945,   Halsey   served   as   a   goodwill ambassador  on  a  6-week  trip  through  Central  and South America. He was given numerous awards in  the  form  of  parades,  reviews,  gifts,  and  military decorations. At  his  own  request,  Halsey  retired  from  the Navy  on  1  March  1947. SEAMAN  JOHNNIE  HUTCHINS In  1943  Seaman  Johnnie  Hutchins  took  his place among the tradition makers of the United States Navy. At that time the LST 473, carrying men, tanks, and supplies, was part of a landing force  heading  for  a  Japanese  position  on  New Guinea.  The  ship  met  stiff  opposition  as  it advanced, with shells dropping in the water close aboard.  Suddenly  a  Japanese  torpedo  plane  dived low  out  of  the  sky  and  launched  its  torpedo directly  at  the  LST.  In  the  pilothouse  the steersman  saw  the  torpedo  coming,  as  did  Seaman Hutchins who stood at his battle station nearby. Before the steersman could swing the ship out of the torpedo’s path, he was killed by a bomb that hit  the  pilot  house.  Although  Hutchins  was  fatally wounded,  he  summoned  enough  strength  to stagger to the wheel and turn the ship clear of the torpedo. The ship was saved, but Hutchins died a short time later. In the face of death, this man’s last  thought  was  not  of  himself,  but  of  others. GUNNER’S  MATE  THIRD  CLASS PAUL  HENRY  CARR On 25 October 1944 USS  Samuel  B.  Roberts (DE-413)  was  surrounded  on  three  sides  by Japanese battleships, cruisers, and destroyers. The men aboard the Roberts were unaware the battle off Samar had begun. The thin-skinned destroyer escort, with its 5-inch guns, was no match for the 18-inch  guns  of  these  Japanese  heavyweights. Even so, on it sailed, closing to within 4,000 yards of  a  heavy  cruiser  and  unleashing  a  spread  of torpedoes. Serving  as  a  gun  captain  on   Robert’s   aft 5"/38-caliber  gun  mount  was  a  farm  boy  from eastern Oklahoma. Carr, who was only 20 years old,  had  never  seen  the  ocean  before  he  joined the Navy in 1943. Now he was in the middle of one of the most important naval battles of World War  II. The only son in a family of nine children, Carr grew upon a farm in Checotah, Oklahoma. Paul learned responsibility at an early age. He always 2-20

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