Friday, August 13, 2010

...While here, we loaded up for a trip to Korea. We had the tank deck about half full of pontoons. These were steel boxes about 15 ft. square and the same high. We also had them attached to the sides for most of the length of the ship. It would have been impossible to turn us over. We were wider than we were high and unless we were blown to bits, we would not sink. We were trying to finish up our load with road and dock building equipment but the waves were coming in so high we had to give it up and head out to sea for Korea. Sometime before midnight we found what had sent us out to sea early. We ran into a typhoon that tossed us around as if we were a bottle cork. I really think those pontoons saved us. We kept our bow into the storm and rode it out anchoring at Inchon, Korea. We were one of the first Americans in there and the natives came out to where we were anchored. They would give almost anything they had for a cigarette or a wormy chocolate bar. I went ashore there and traded cigarettes for a tea service and vase. After we unloaded, we sailed back to Okinawa. From where we anchored in Buckner Bay, I counted fourteen ships on their sides, grounded in shallow water, and some high and dry on the beach.

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