Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

Navy Birthday 244 Plan of the Day Notes

Plan of the Day Notes (PODs) make it easy for executive officers to share pivotal Navy milestones with their deckplates.

 

Celebrating Navy’s 244th birthday, we remember the Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest sea battle in modern history. From 23 to 25 October 1944, the goal was to liberate the Philippines and secure democracy in the Pacific theater. Four widely separated engagements made up the larger battle. These offer today’s Sailors multiple examples of heroism in action as we again face great power competition.

 

Celebrating Navy’s 244th birthday, we remember the Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest sea battle in modern history. Three Seventh Fleet escort-carrier task units operated off Samar, on the northern flank of the Leyte operational area, where they provided close air support and an ASW screen for the amphibious forces. Sailor toughness, initiative, integrity, and accountability were about to be put to the test.

 

Celebrating Navy’s 244th birthday, we remember the Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest sea battle in modern history. Just after sunrise on 25 October 1944, U.S. Task Unit 77.4.3, call sign “Taffy 3,” was confronted by a much larger Japanese force off Samar. Aboard five escort carriers, three destroyers, and four destroyer escorts, American Sailors were all that stood between the landing force and possible defeat.

 

Celebrating Navy’s 244th birthday, we remember the Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest sea battle in modern history. Off Samar, leaving carrier air cover behind, a group of American destroyers covering the landing charged into a line of Japanese battleships. Later, the CO of USS Samuel B. Roberts (DE-413) reported there was “no higher honor” than serving with his crew in that action, which protected the landing force.

 

Celebrating Navy’s 244th birthday, we remember the Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest sea battle in modern history. Leading the charge off Samar was USS Johnston (DD-557) under CDR Ernest Evans. At commissioning he said, “This is going to be a fighting ship. I intend to go in harm’s way, and anyone who doesn’t want to go along had better get off right now.” Johnston’s fight ended with great sacrifice.

 

Celebrating Navy’s 244th birthday, we remember the Battle of Leyte Gulf, the largest sea battle in modern history. Off Samar, Taffy 3’s initiative, aggressiveness, and heroism, combined with U.S. naval air attacks, thwarted enemy attempts to destroy U.S. landing forces. Additional U.S. victories in the Sibuyan Sea, Surigao Strait, and off Cape Engano destroyed much of the Japanese navy’s remaining offensive power.

Published: Thu Sep 12 17:39:14 EDT 2019