USS Currier DE 700 (Buckley Class Destroyer Escort)
Named for Navy Lieutenant Roger Noon Currier.
Roger Currier was born in Portland, Oregon, April 20 1913, he graduated from the US Naval Academy June 3rd 1937. His first assignment was on USS Salt Lake City (CA-26) and was later assigned to the staff of Admiral Norman Scott as Communications Officer on October 20th 1942.
He embarked on the USS Atlanta (CL-51), as part of Task Group 67.4. On the night of November 13th 1942, one of the most brutal naval engagements of WWII took place at Guadalcanal. In the confusion during the Battle of Guadalcanal, that one naval officer described as a "bar room brawl with the lights shut off", the Cruiser Atlanta took no less than 49 major calibre hits and one torpedo! The midship magazine was set afire and the bridge was riddled, killing most of the bridge personnel including Lieutenant Roger Noon Currier and Admiral Norman Scott. Roger Currier shared posthumously in the Presidential Unit Citation awarded to Atlanta and also received a Purple Heart. Admiral Scott was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor.
On the night of November 13th 1942, the smaller American naval force of 13 US ships that comprised Task Group 67.4 turned back a vastly superior Japanese naval force of at least 25 ships that included two battleships! In the naval Battle of Guadalcanal, 1,439 American sailors and 520 Japanese sailors gave their lives.
The Destroyer Escort USS Currier (DE-700) was launched October 14th 1943 by Defoe Shipbuilding Co., Bay City, Michigan, sponsored by Mrs. R. N. Currier, widow of Lieutenant Currier, and commissioned on February 1st 1944 with Commander A. L. Lind, USNR, in command.
The Currier served on convoy escort duty to Casablanca from May 28th to June 17th 1944, then returned to Oran on July 10th to escort convoys passing from Oran to Naples, Bizerte, Palermo and Gibraltar. On August 12th she cleared Salerno with a convoy of 112 LCI(L)'s and 28 other escorts carrying troops of the 46th Infantry Division, United States Army for the amphibious assault landings of Southern France August 14th. The Currier screened the transports during the landings, then guarded convoys from Oran to the beachheads from August 20th to September 4th. Between September 10th and 20th, she was escort commander of the "Naples Shuttle" providing supplies to the invadion troops.* Returning to Oran she cleared on September 28th for the west coast of the United States, arriving at San Diego California October 27th.
The Currier departed San Francisco November 23rd 1944 for Saipan. She arrived at Saipan on December 28th for radar picket duty, patrol and to escort convoys to Eniwetok Ulithi, Guam and Iwo Jima. From July 29th until the end of the war she voyaged between Guam and Okinawa on escort duty. On August 26th she joined the USS Osmus (DE-701) to accept the surrender of the Japanese garrison on Rota, then inspected the island.
The USS Currier departed Eniwetok September 19th 1946 for overhaul at San Pedro. In March of 1946 she was back in the Far East transporting Japanese prisoners of war from Hong Kong and Shanghai. After calling at Chinese ports she patrolled along the Korean and Northern China coast investigating small craft and taking the crew of six of these into custody for trial. She called at Manila for a visit in February 1947, then continued to San Diego, arriving March 2nd. Between 1948 and 1952 Currier was on the west coast and in the Hawaiian Islands, concentrating on antisubmarine warfare training. On April 19th 1962 she sailed from San Diego for duty in the western Pacific, patrolling off the east coast of Korea and in the Taiwan Straits and participating in hunter-killer exercises in Japanese waters. Returning to San Diego on September 6th, she served as a sonar school training ship until May 20th 1964 when she began her fourth Far Eastern cruise. The Currier returned to San Diego September 7th to resume local operations, primarily with the Fleet Sonar School. After 17 years of Naval service, the USS Currier was placed out of commission in reserve at San Francisco April 4th 1960.
The USS Currier received two Battle Stars for World War II service and one Battle Star for Korean War service.
*My unclce Thomas C. Henderson served on the USS Currier during this time period. He later served on LST 598.
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