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Michael Frederick, DK2
Hathaway, Amos Townsend, CAPT USN(Ret).
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Home Town Pueblo, CO
Last Address Charleston, SC
Date of Passing Aug 26, 1996
Location of Interment Arlington National Cemetery - Arlington, Virginia
Wall/Plot Coordinates 12 8533-7
Last Known Activity
After his Navy service, Amos Hathaway was a mathematics professor at the Citadel, South Carolina, from 1966 to 1979.
Awarded for Actions During World War II
Division: U.S.S. Heermann (DD-532)
General Orders: Commander 7th Fleet: Serial 0678 (February 1, 1945)
Citation: The President of the United States of America takes pleasure in presenting the Navy Cross to Commander Amos Townsend Hathaway, United States Navy, for extraordinary heroism and distinguished service in the line of his profession as Commanding Officer of the Destroyer U.S.S. HEERMANN (DD-532), during a strike against major units of the enemy Japanese Fleet, in the Battle off Samar Island, on 25 October 1944. When a formidable column of Japanese battleships, cruisers and destroyers attacked our small Task Unit of Escort Carriers, Commander Hathaway twice closed to four thousand yards of the hostile disposition to launch torpedo attacks on heavy ships of the enemy, holding his ship under a constant bombardment of gunfire and succeeded in scoring one confirmed hit on a battleship. Again maneuvering within short range, he skillfully brought his surface guns to bear on two heavy cruisers and greatly assisted in putting these ships out of action. By his courageous action he diverted enemy fire from our lightly armed carriers to his own ship, thereby materially aiding in their protection. His leadership, gallant fighting spirit and devotion to duty were in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service.
USS Hoel, a 2050-ton Fletcher class destroyer built at San Francisco, California, was commissioned in late July 1943. After shakedown operations along the west coast, she departed for the Pacific combat zone in October 1943. A month later, she took part in the Gilbert Islands invasion as part of the screen for U.S. escort aircraft carriers. She performed a similar mission during the Marshalls operation during January and February 1944, also providing gunfire support during landings on Eniwetok. .Hoel was based in the south Pacific from March 1944, escorting convoys, performing anti-submarine patrols and serving with the escort carriers of the Third and Seventh Fleets. She also participated in the Peleliu invasion during September 1944.
Hoel continued to operate with escort carriers during the invasion of Leyte in October 1944. When the Japanese Navy counter-attacked to produce the decisive Battle of Leyte Gulf, she was operating north of Leyte. A powerful enemy surface force encountered her task group east of Samar on the morning of 25 October, and Hoel and other destroyers valiantly attacked them with guns and torpedoes in order to cover the escort carriers' retreat. Though Hoel was sunk in this Battle off Samar, with the loss of nearly three-quarters of her crew, her sacrifice helped to save all but one of the escort carriers and to deflect the Japanese from their mission of attacking the Leyte invasion force.