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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
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Shelter

 

(AM-301: dp. 530; l. 184'6"; b. 33'; dr. 9'9"; s. 14.8 k.; cpl. 104; a. 1 3", 2 40mm.; cl. Admirable)

 

Shelter (AM-301) was laid down on 16 August 1943 by Winslow Marine Railway and Shipbuilding Co., Winslow, Wash.; launched on 14 November 1943; sponsored by Miss Patricia Whittenberg; and commissioned on 9 July 1944, Lt. Douglas R. Giddings in command.

 

Shelter conducted shakedown training at San Pedro and sailed from San Francisco on 21 October as escort unit for a convoy which entered Pearl Harbor on the 30th. After assault minesweeping exercises off Maui, she departed Pearl Harbor on 5 January with an amphibious assault force that arrived off Iwo Jima on 16 February 1945. She made pre-invasion sweeps with Mine Division 36 until troops stormed ashore on the 19th, remaining on patrol and screening station until 28 February; then helped guard an amphibious group to Saipan before proceeding to Ulithi, Western Caroline Islands, arriving on 9 March for logistics and preparations for the coming Okinawa campaign.

 

On 19 March 1945, Shelter departed Ulithi with Mine Group 2 for exploratory sweeps in the Kerama Retto area, Okinawa, from 26 March until the initial invasion landings on 1 April. She made assault sweeps at le Shima on 8 and 14 April, served on antisubmarine patrol, and departed on 4 May for Ulithi, thence to San Pedro Bay, Leyte, Philippine Islands. Here, she joined a convoy which reached Okinawa on the 29th. The following three weeks were largely taken up with sweeping of minefields off Myako Jima in the East China Sea. She stood out of Buckner Bay on 8 July 1945 as escort unit for LST Group 45 which entered San Pedro Bay on 13 July, and departed Leyte Gulf on 19 August with a convoy that reached Okinawa on the 24th. Six days later, she sailed with a minesweeping task unit that swept the Arcadia minefields in the Yellow Sea in preparation for the landing of occupation forces on the Korean peninsula by the Ninth Fleet on 7 September1945. She then proceeded to the western coast of Kyushu, Japan, for minesweeping in approaches to Nagasaki and Sasebo, clearing 22 moored mines and obstructions from 9 to 16 September 1945.

 

Shelter departed Nagasaki on 26 September 1945 for repairs at Sasebo, then spent 11 to 17 October sweeping 83 Japanese mines in Tsushima Strait. She repeated this operation 1 to 12 November, sweeping 69 more mines; then became reference ship for a unit of three Japanese Coastal Defense ships sweeping shallow waters southeast of Tsushima until 16 November 1945. She joined Mine Squadron Twelve on 27 November, acting as reference ship until completion of sweeping operations in Tsushima Strait on 4 December 1945. She departed Wakayama, Japan, for home on 11 December, touching Eniwetok, Pearl Harbor, and San Diego on her way to Galveston, Texas, arriving on 3 February1946. She shifted to Orange, Texas, on 5 April; was decommissioned there on 7 June 1946, and placed in the Texas Group, United States Atlantic Reserve Fleet. While in reserve status, on 7 February 1955, her hull classification was changed from AM 301 to MSF-301.

 

Shelter remained in reserve until 15 July 1963 when she commenced conversion to a patrol and escort craft in the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard. She was struck from the Navy list on 1 August 1963 and was transferred on loan to the government of Vietnam on 24 January 1964, under terms of the Military Assistance Program.

 

Shelter received six battle stars for service in World War II.