|USS Kendrick (DD-612)|
|Career (United States)|
|Name:||USS Kendrick (DD-612)|
|Namesake:||Charles S. Kendrick|
|Builder:||Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation, San Pedro, California|
|Launched:||2 April 1942|
|Commissioned:||12 September 1942|
|Decommissioned:||31 March 1947|
|Struck:||1 May 1966|
|Fate:||Destroyed in tests|
|Class & type:||Benson-class destroyer|
|Length:||348 ft 4 in (106.17 m)|
|Beam:||36 ft 1 in (11.00 m)|
|Draught:||11 ft 9 in (3.58 m)|
|Speed:||37.5 kts (69,5 km/h)|
|Armament:||4 x 5" (127 mm), 4 x 40mm., 6 dcp., 2 dct., 5 x 21" (533 mm) tt.|
Kendrick was launched 2 April 1942 by Bethlehem Steel Corporation, San Pedro, California; sponsored by Mrs. J. Hanson Delvac, a great-granddaughter of Acting Master Charles S. Kendrick; and commissioned 12 September 1942, Lieutenant Commander C. T. Caufield in command.
After shakedown exercises along the West Coast, Kendrick cleared San Diego, California on 11 December 1942 and arrived Casco Bay, Maine on 28 December for ASW exercises. The destroyer then sailed to New York to join Convoy UG-S-4 and sailed 13 January 1943 for Casablanca. She returned to New York 13 February with another convoy, and commenced patrol, escort, and training from Norfolk, Virginia to Newfoundland. Kendrick departed New York 28 April for a round trip escort mission to Oran, Algeria, and returned New York on 8 June.
After 3 days, the destroyer once again steamed toward the Mediterranean Sea, escorting Rear Admiral Alan G. Kirk's Task Force 85, which carried Major General Troy Middleton's 45th Infantry Division. She arrived Oran, staging area for the invasion of Sicily, on 22 June. Kendrick sailed 5 July and arrived off the beaches of Scoglitti 4 days later. She guarded transports and landing craft until 12 July, then steamed as escort for troop ships via Oran to New York, arriving there 4 August.
She returned to Oran 2 September. That night, a German dive bomber (Hinkle 111)made a surprise attack on Kendrick's starboard quarter. The plane roared in 50 feet above the water and launched two torpedoes before it was shot down by the destroyer's gunners. One of the torpedoes struck Kendrick's stern, damaging her rudder, steering compartment, and fantail, and killed one crew member. As she turned back to Oran, the destroyer stopped to throw life rings to the crew of the enemy plane and reported their position.
After temporary repairs at Oran, Kendrick was towed to Norfolk, arriving 26 October. Upon completion of repairs she made a round-trip escort cruise to the United Kingdom before sailing 18 February 1944 as a convoy escort. Arriving Oran 5 March, she prepared for patrol and screening operations, and joined the screen of Philadelphia. For nearly 3 months, the destroyer repeatedly provided effective gunfire in support of ground troops advancing up the Italian boot. After Rome was liberated, she stood by to support the Allied drive in northern Italy.
She cleared Palermo 12 August for the invasion of southern France. As a unit of Rear Admiral Morton Deyo's American-French bombardment group, Kendrick gave direct fire support to the 36th Infantry Division storming the beaches on 15 August. She helped silence German 88 mm guns from 15 to 16 August, and bombarded gun emplacements and ammunition dumps at St. Madrier, France from 25 to 26 August. Upon completion of her mission, the destroyer steamed toward the United States, arriving at Boston, Massachusetts on 19 September.
Kendrick escorted a convoy to the Mediterranean Sea in mid-November, before returning New York 15 December. She joined a convoy and once again departed Norfolk 6 January 1945, reporting for duty with the 8th Fleet 18 January. For the next 4 months she performed air-sea rescue, escort duty, fire support missions, and patrol duty in the Mediterranean as the war in Europe came to an end. Kendrick cleared Oran 15 May with a convoy and put into New York 8 days later. Following repairs at New York and refresher training in Cuba, the destroyer transited the Panama Canal, arriving Pearl Harbor on 28 August via San Diego, California. She engaged in training exercises out of Hawaii before returning Charleston, South Carolina on 16 October.
Kendrick remained at Charleston until she decommissioned and joined the Atlantic Reserve Fleet at Orange, Texas, 31 March 1947. On 1 May 1966, her name was struck from the Navy List, and Kendrick was used in destruction tests at sea by the David Taylor Model Basin.
Kendrick received three battle stars for World War II service.
As of 2009, no other ship in the United States Navy has been named Kendrick.
This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.
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