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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORY AND HERITAGE COMMAND
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Andres

 

Eric Theodore Andres born on 12 May 1915 at Flint, Mich. received a bachelor's degree from Valparaiso University in 1937. After enlisting in the Naval Reserve on 25 October 1941 at Chicago, 111. , he underwent his initial naval training at the Naval Reserve Midshipman's School at Northwestern University. Promoted to ensign on 15 May 1942, Andres was assigned to duty in the heavy cruiser Astoria (CA-34), and joined his ship soon thereafter. The young officer was killed in Astoria during the Battle of Savo Island on 9 August 1942.

 

(DE-45: dp. 1,140; 1. 289'5"; b. 35'2"; dr. 11'; s. 21.5 k.; cpl. 156; a. 3 3", 2 40mm., 9 20mm., 2 dct., 8 dcp., 1 dcp. (hh.); cl. Evarts)

 

The destroyer escort Capel, allocated to the Royal Navy under Lend-Lease and given classification BDE^15, was laid down on 12 February 1942 by the Philadelphia Navy Yard; launched on 24 July 1942; sponsored by Miss Mary Elizabeth Schumacher, the daughter of Capt. Theodore L. Schumacher, USN, who was assigned to the Philadelphia Navy Yard; reclassified to DE^45 on 25 January 1943 when the ship was reallocated to the United States Navy; renamed Andres on 4 March 1943; and commissioned at her builders' yard on 15 March 1943, Lt. Comdr. Clayton R. Simmers in command.

 

After fitting out, undergoing post-commissioning alterations, and completing acceptance trials, Andres proceeded to Bermuda, whence she carried out her shakedown from 12 April to 3 May. Upon completion of this training, she sailed for Philadelphia on 3 May.

 

While in the course of her homeward voyage, at 1913 on the 4th, she sighted red signal rockets off her port bow and, two minutes later, went to general quarters, changing course toward the direction of the rockets. Soon thereafter, she spotted a dinghy, awash in the sea, containing four men, 1,500 yards off her port bow, and three life rafts lashed together about 1,000 yards beyond. Andres then steered various courses and speeds, picking up men from the water; these proved to be the 31 survivors (28 merchant seamen and three members of the Navy armed guard detachment) of USAT Oneida, which, after straggling from a coastal convoy en route from New York to Guantanamo Bay, had foundered and sunk in bad weather at 0213 on 4 May, some 70 miles northeast of Cape Charles. The men had drifted nine and a half miles since the sinking. Completing the rescue effort at 1950, and ascertaining from the survivors than no additional boats and rafts had gotten clear of Oneida before she had gone down, Andres then resumed her voyage to Philadelphia. She moored at the Navy Yard at 1257 on 5 May, and disembarked the 31 rescued men later the same day.

 

Following post-shakedown repairs and alterations, Andres then conducted further training off Rockland, Maine, and put of New London, Conn., before she proceeded to Miami, arriving there on 10 June 1943 for duty with the Operational Training Command, Atlantic Fleet. She then operated principally in the Florida Straits area as a school ship at the Submarine Chaser Training School (SCTS), Miami, indoctrinating student officers and nucleus crews, and interspersed this training with periodic overhauls at the Charleston (S.C.) Navy Yard (19-29 March, 25 June-1 July, and 16-26 October 1944).

 

Detached from that duty on 28 November 1944, Andres proceeded to New York, reaching that port on 1 December 1944, and reported for duty with Escort Division (CortDiv) 80 the following day. After refresher training out of Casco Bay, Maine, the destroyer escort then proceeded to Norfolk, where she was assigned to Task Force 64. Over the next five months, Andres operated with CortDiv 80 and escorted convoys to Gibraltar and back. News of the German surrender reached her on 7 May 1945 shortly after she had conducted antisubmarine warfare exercises off Mers-El-Kebir in company with her sister ships Edgar G. Chase (DE-16) and John M. Bermingkam (DE-530) and the French submarine Doris, and had concluded a "rescue of survivors drill." Andres returned to the United States on 28 May 1945.

 

Following upkeep at New York, Andres conducted further training out of Casco Bay before she proceeded back to Miami, arriving there on 20 July. She resumed work as a training ship, this time with the Naval Training Center, Miami. Word of the Japanese surrender, on 14 August 1945, found ship operating south of the Dry Tortugas.

 

Detached from the Naval Training Center, Miami, on 8 September 1945, Andres sailed in company with the other ships of CortDiv 80, and reached the Charleston Naval Shipyard on 9 September 1945 to commence inactivation. Decommissioned there on 18 October 1945, Andres was struck from the Naval Vessel Register on 1 November 1945. She was scrapped in February 1946.

 

 

Andres (DE-45) at the Philadelphia Navy Yard, 25 March 1943. In the background, to the right, lie Olympia (IX-40) and the hulk of Taylor (DD-94). (NH 92285)