posted on May, 11 2005 @ 03:59 AM
Here's what I found on the U.S.S. Eldridge:
John Eldridge, Jr., born 10 October 1903 in Buckingham
County, Va., graduated from the Naval Academy in 1927.
After flight training at Pensacola, Fla., he served at
various stations on aviation duty. From 11 September 1941
he was Commander, Scouting Squadron 71, attached to
aircraft carrier WASP (CV-7). Lieutenant Commander
Eldridge was killed in action in the Solomons, 2 November
1942. For his extraordinary heroism in leading the air
attack on Japanese positions in the initial invasion of the
Solomons, 7 and 8 August 1942, he was posthumously awarded
the Navy Cross.
Displacement: 1,240 t.
Speed: 21 k.
Armament: 3 3”; 3 21” torpedo tubes;
8 depth charge projectors;
2 depth charge tracks;
1 hedge hog
ELDRIDGE (DE-173) was launched 25 July 1943 by Federal
Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co., Newark, N.J.; sponsored by
Mrs. John Eldridge, Jr., widow of Lieutenant Commander
Eldridge; and commissioned 27 August 1943, Lieutenant C. R.
Hamilton, USNR, in command.
Between 4 January 1944 and 9 May 1945, ELDRIDGE sailed
on the vital task of escorting to the Mediterranean men and
materials to support Allied operations in north Africa and
on into southern Europe. She made nine voyages to deliver
convoys safely to Casablanca, Bizerte, and Oran.
ELDRIDGE departed New York 28 May 1945 for service in
the Pacific. En route to Saipan in July, she made contact
with an underwater object and immediately attacked but no
results were observed. She arrived at Okinawa 7 August for
local escort and patrol, and with the end of hostilities a
week later, continued to serve as escort on the
Saipan-Ulithi-Okinawa routes until November. ELDRIDGE was
placed out of commission, in reserve, 17 June 1946. On 15
January 1951, she was transferred under the Mutual Defense
Assistance program to Greece, with whom she serves as
destroyer escort LEON (D-54).
[LEON was disposed of by the Greek Navy in 1991, but
she was retained as a training hulk.
“Naval Institute Guide to Combat Fleets of the World, 1995,”
p.248 (The “Guide” says the ex-ELDRIDGE became the Greek
destroyer escort PANTHIR (D-67), various “Jane’s Fighting
Ships” and “Conway’s All The World’s Fighting Ships,
1947-1995” agree with the “Dictionary.”)]
Transcribed by Michael Hansen