Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Pratt (DE-363)

(DE-363; dp. 1,745 (f.) ; l. 306-0-; b. 36-7-; dr. 13-4-; s. 24 k. cpl. 222; a. 2 5-, 6 40mm., 2 dct., 8 dcp., I dcp. (hh.), 3 21- tt.; cl. John C. Butler)

Malcolm Lewis Pratt, born in Bellefontaine, Ohio, 5 August 1891, became Assistant Surgeon with rank of Lieutenant (junior grade), USNRF, 27 March 1917. He received the Navy Cross for extraordinary heroism in reestablishing an advanced aid station just demolished by shell-fire in Lucy le Bosage 11 June 1918, and in continuing to dress and evacuate the wounded under direct and continuous shell-fire at Thiancourt 13 September. He resigned from the Navy 13 October 1919, but on 2 May 1941 he reported for active duty again with the rank of Lieutenant Commander, MC, USNR. Attached to a Marine Division, he was reported missing in action as of 13 August 1942, when he failed to return from a reconnaissance patrol near the village Mantanikau on Guadalcanal.

John Lester Pratt, born at Bellefontaine, Ohio, 27 October 1920, enlisted in the Marine Corps 6 May 1941. He was appointed a Second Lieutenant in the Marine Corps Reserve 1 November 1941 and became First Lieutenant 1 October 1942. He was killed in action on Guadalcanal 22 January 1943.

Pratt (DE-363) was laid down by the Consolidated Steel Corp., Ltd., Orange, Tex., 11 April 1944; launched 1 June 1944; sponsored by Mrs. Malcolm L. Pratt; and commissioned 18 September 1944, Comdr. Robert H. Wanless in command.

After shakedown off Bermuda, Pratt sailed with Escort Division 85 for the Panama Canal and southwest Pacific. Arriving at Manus, Admiralty Islands, 7 January 1945, Pratt was escort commander for convoys running between New Guinea and the Philippines until 25 May. Between 25 May and 25 August she trained and escorted British and U.S. submarines in the Subic Bay area and patrolled the shipping lanes off the northwestern coast of Luzon.

Pratt next joined TG 70.4 and sailed to Okinawa where she joined the Korean occupation force. On 5 September she sailed for Jinsen and after aiding in establishing a seaplane anchorage there, she got underway with Currituck (AV-7) and Rombach (DE-364), for Shanghai, China, whence she shifted. to Taku, arriving 28 September to plant seaplane moorings. On 21 November she departed the Asian continent for Okinawa, thence to the United States for inactivation. Arriving at San Pedro 16 December, she decommissioned 14 May 1946 and was berthed at Stockton as a unit of the Pacific Reserve Fleet. Transferred to the Mare Island Group in 1959, she has remained a unit of the Reserve Fleet into 1970.

Published: Mon Apr 18 21:38:57 EDT 2016