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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
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Marine Serpent

 

A merchant name retained.

 

(T‑AP‑202: dp. 10,210; l. 523'; b. 72'; dr. 26'; s. 18 k.; trp. 3,451; a. none; cl. Marine Adder; T. C4‑S‑A3)

 

Marine Serpent (T‑AP‑202) was laid down under Maritime Commission contract by Kaiser Co., Inc., Vancouver, Wash., 30 November 1944; launched 12 June 1945; sponsored by Mrs. W. J. Rohe; and delivered to her operator, United Fruit Co., 21 September 1945.

 

Following the end of World War II, Marine Serpent took part in the massive sealift to carry occupation troops to the Far East and to return veterans of the Pacific campaigns to the United States. Departing San Francisco 31 October, she steamed to the western Pacific and during the next 4 months completed two voyages to the Philippines and back. Between 24 March 1946 and 11 June she made two runs to Japan and back while operating out of San Francisco and Seattle. She continued transporting troops during the remainder of 1946 and in July 1947 entered the Maritime Commission Reserve Fleet in Suisun Bay, Calif., where she remained during the next 5 years.

 

In response to the increased demands on U.S. seapower during the U.N. police action in Korea, Marine Serpent was acquired by the Navy from the Maritime Administration 8 May 1952 and assigned to duty with MSTS. Manned by a civil service crew, Marine Serpent completed activation at San Francisco 13 September, thence sailed to San Diego where she departed for the Far East 15 September. During the remainder of the Korean conflict, she made six voyages out of west coast ports including Seattle, San Francisco, and San Diego to Japanese and South Korean ports, During late May and early June 1953 she shuttled among the offshore islands including Cheju‑Do and Koje‑Do to transport interned North Korean POWs. Between 7 and 18 June she steamed from Yokohama, Japan, to Seattle.

 

After the establishment of uneasy peace on the war-torn peninsula 27 July, Marine Serpent departed Seattle 8 August to carry replacement troops to the troubled Far East and to return veterans to the United States. During the rest of 1953 and much of 1954 she made seven runs to the western Pacific. After returning to Seattle 24 October 1954, she was placed in reduced operational status until 23 December when she again sailed for the Far East. Arriving Inchon 12 January 1955, she sailed via Sasebo and Okinawa to Haiphong, French Indochina, where she arrived 20 January. During the next 4 months she operated along the coast of Indochina transporting Vietnamese refugees from the Communist‑dominated North to a new life of freedom in the South. In addition she evacuated French troops and military equipment southward to ports such as Saigon and Tourane. In mid‑May she completed her duty in troubled Southeast Asia and returned to Japan. After steaming to Inchon and back, she departed Yokohama 31 May and sailed to the west coast where she arrived Seattle 13 June. She returned to reduced operational status at Seattle and on 17 August 1955 transferred to the Maritime Administration at Olympia, Wash. She entered the National Defense Reserve Fleet and her name was struck from the Navy list 17 August. Into 1969 she remains berthed in Puget Sound at Olympia.

 

Marine Serpent received three battle stars for Korean service.