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Feland (APA-11)


Logan Feland, born on 18 August 1869 in Hopkinsville, Ky., served as a captain in the 3rd Kentucky Infantry during the Spanish-American War, and entered the U.S. Marine Corps as a first lieutenant on 1 July 1899. He served with high distinction in the many expeditions made by the USMC in the Caribbean and Central America between the Spanish-American War and the Great War [World War I].

Feland was second and then first in command of the valorous 5th Marine Regiment, receiving the Distinguished Service Cross for his conspicuous courage and ability in the Battle of Belleau Wood, and additional laurels in the Battles of Soissons, the Meuse-Argonne, and the attack on Blanc Mont Ridge in the Champagne.

His post war service was highlighted by command of the Marine Brigade in the occupation of Nicaragua, and the Department of the Pacific. Maj. Gen. Feland retired on 1 September 1933, and died on 17 July 1936.

(APA-11: displacement 6,720 (full load); length 414'6"; beam 56'; draft 18'6"; speed 19 knots; complement 453; troops 890; armament 4 3-inch, 4 40 millimeter, 8 20 millimeter; class Doyen; type P1-S2-L2)

Feland (AP-18) was laid down on 25 November 1941 under a Maritime Commission contract (M.C. Hull 182) at Los Angeles, Calif., by the Consolidated Steel Corp.; launched on 10 November 1942; sponsored by Mrs. L. Feland, widow of the late Maj. Gen. Feland; reclassified as an attack transport, APA-11, effective 1 February 1943; and commissioned on 21 June 1943 in the U.S. Navy Dry Dock, Roosevelt Base, Terminal Island, San Pedro, Calif., Capt. Clinton A. Misson in command.

Feland carried Marines from San Diego, Calif., to Pago Pago, Samoa, arriving on 24 August 1943, then sailed on to New Zealand for landing exercises, which she continued at Efate, in the New Hebrides, in November. On 13 November, she sortied from Efate for the invasion of Tarawa on 20 November, and for eight days lay off the bitterly contested island; one of her beach party, CM1c Francis L. Neville, suffered a gunshot wound in the right thigh while engaged in operations on Green Beach, Tarawa. Feland landed  reserve troops, brought on board casualties, and re-embarked troops when the island was secured. These men she carried to Pearl Harbor, Territory of Hawaii, arriving there on 7 December. After training and a brief overhaul, Feland put to sea with soldiers on 22 January 1944, bound for Kwajalein. She landed the troops as reserves on 1 February, one day after the initial assault, and re-embarked them a week later when the atoll had been secured. Feland returned to Honolulu with troops and casualties on 15 February, landed them, embarked passengers, and sailed for a west coast overhaul.

The transport returned to Pearl Harbor on 6 May 1944, and after training, arrived at Eniwetok on 9 June. Two days later, combat loaded, she sailed for the invasion of Saipan, and on 15 June took part in a demonstration landing at Tanapag Harbor, while the main assault was made north of Charan-Kanoa. The next day, Feland began to send troops and cargo ashore, but that night was ordered to retire from the island, to avoid the danger of an expected Japanese attack. She returned on 21 June to complete unloading and embark casualties for Honolulu.

Feland returned to Eniwetok on 17 July 1944 with troops for the assault on Guam, where she landed them on 22 July, one day after the initial landings. Again she sailed back to the Hawaiian Islands with casualties, and began training for the liberation of the Philippines. Manus, in the Admiralties, was her jumping-off point for this operation, and she arrived in Leyte Gulf on 20 October to unload in the transport area off Dulag and retire the next day, before the outbreak of the Battle for Leyte Gulf.

After one voyage to bring reinforcements from New Guinea to Leyte, Feland embarked soldiers at Aitape, from which she sailed on 28 December 1944, three days after Christmas, in the San Fabian attack force. In the initial assault in Lingayen Gulf on 9 January 1945 she landed troops and cargo in record time, despite heavy mortar fire from shore which wounded Ens. Clifford P. Assad, D-V(G) USNR, and Cox. James Stevens, V-6, USNR, when a shell landed very near their landing craft. A third sailor, Sea2c Harry B. Shaw, V-6, USNR, was also wounded. Ens. Assad remained on board for treatment, but the seriousness of their wounds resulted in Cox. Stevens being transferred to the tank landing ship LST-464 and Sea2c Shaw to the attack cargo ship Thuban (AKA-19). Feland cleared the beachhead next day, and that evening fired on a Japanese suicide plane which veered away, selecting another target. After calling at Leyte and Ulithi, she sailed to Guam to take aboard marines for the Iwo Jima operation.

Arriving off Iwo on 19 February 1945, Feland's leathernecks were held in reserve until 27 February, when they were landed through heavy surf on a difficult beach. She carried casualties to Guam, then sailed for Manus, in the Admiralties, and Noumea, New Caledonia, to embark soldiers for transportation to Leyte. Between 28 May and 16 July, she carried military passengers between ports in New Guinea and the Philippines, then sailed for a west coast overhaul. This was completed in October, and after one voyage to the Philippines with cargo, she returned to Seattle on 20 November. There Feland was decommissioned on 15 March 1946.

Stricken from the Naval Register on 28 March 1946, ex-Feland entered the Maritime Commission's Reserve Fleet berthing area at Olympia, Wash., at 9:00 a.m.on 28 June 1946, being placed in Area D-8. Within two years, the Navy estimated (January 1948) that it would cost $425,000 to "put [the] ship in operable condition." By December 1951, a boiler was reported in bad condition.The ship was withdrawn from the fleet under a general agency agreement at 10:30 a.m. on 28 October 1954 by the Olympic Steamship Co., under the fleet repair program. She re-entered the Reserve Fleet three days after Christmas of 1954 [28 December] at 2:00 p.m. Ultimately, Zidell Explorations, Inc., purchased the former attack transport on 7 February 1964 for scrap, and she was removed from the fleet at 9:12 a.m. on 16 March 1964.

Feland received five battle stars for her World War II service, for her participation in the Gilbert Islands operation (20 November-7 December 1943), the Marshall Islands operation, for the occupation of Kwajalain and Majuro Atolls (31 January-8 February 1944); the Marianas operation, for the capture and occupation of Saipan (15-22 June 1944), and Guam (22-29 July 1944); for the Leyte landings (28 October and 18 November 1944); and for the Iwo Jima operation, for the capture and occupation of Iwo Jima (19 February-5 March 1945).

Updated, Robert J. Cressman

8 March 2022

Published: Tue Mar 08 12:30:50 EST 2022