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Antona

 

II

 

(IX-133: dp. 4,343; 1. 438'6"; b. 57'0"; dr. 27'4" (f.); s. 10.5 k.; cpl. 61; a. 1 4", 1 3")

 

The second Antona (IX-133)—a tanker built in 1921 at Oakland, Calif., by the Moore Shipbuilding Co. for the Vacuum Oil Co. —carried crude oil and petroleum products commercially for over two decades before being purchased by the Maritime Commission's War Shipping Administration (WSA) in the autumn of 1943. The tanker was immediately slated for naval service and renamed Antona on 3 November 1943, but remained in WSA hands during repairs and conversion preparing her for her new role. She was transferred to the Navy under a bare-boat charter on 4 May 1944 at Majuro Atoll in the Marshall Islands and was commissioned that same day, Lt. Comdr. Louis M. Fabian, USNR, in command.

 

Assigned to Service Squadron (ServRon) 10, Antona remained at Majuro as a station tanker until 21 June. On that day, she headed for Eniwetok Atoll where she served as station tanker until early October. On 5 October, the ship put to sea to move forward to the fleet anchorage at Ulithi in the Caroline Islands. She remained at Ulithi until getting underway on 13 February 1945 and proceeding to the Palaus. She fueled ships at Kossol Passage, sailing—via Peleliu—back to Ulithi early in June. She departed Ulithi on 10 July, bound for Okinawa, and spent the remainder of the war as a station tanker at that island. She departed Okinawa in December and arrived at Subic Bay in the Philippines on 21 December.

 

Antona remained at Subic Bay until 3 March 1946 at which time she set sail for the United States. She arrived at San Francisco on 15 April 1946 and was decommissioned there on 3 May 1946. That same day, she was returned to WSA and laid up with the National Defense Reserve Fleet at Suisun Bay, Calif. Her name was struck from the Navy list on 21 May 1946. Carrying her original name, Birkenhead, she remained in custody of the Maritime Commission until scrapped in 1957