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Gosselin (APD-126)


Edward Webb Gosselin, born on 1 May 1917 at Hamden, Conn., was educated at Yale University. He enlisted as an apprentice seaman on 30 September 1940 and was commissioned on 14 March 1941. Ens. Gosselin's first duty station was on board the battleship Arizona (BB-39), and he reported on board on 3 May 1941 as an engineer. When Arizona was sunk on 7 December 1941 at Pearl Harbor, Ens. Gosselin was officially declared dead as of that date.

(APD-126: displacement 1,650; length 306'; beam 37'; draft 12'7"; speed 24 knots; complement 204; troops 162; armament 1 5-inch, 6 40 millimeter, 6 20 millimeter, 2 depth charge tracks; class Charles Lawrence)

Gosselin (DE-710) was laid down on 17 February 1944 at Bay City, Mich., by the Defoe Shipbuilding Co.; launched on 4 May 1944; sponsored by Mrs. E. N. Gosselin, mother of the late Ens. Gosselin; and, having been completed as a high speed transport and given the identification number APD-126, was commissioned on 31 December 1944, Lt. Cmdr. Joseph B. Fyffe in command.

After shakedown in Bermuda and Chesapeake Bay waters, Gosselin cleared Norfolk 16 February 1945 bound for the Pacific via the Panama Canal. Touching at Pearl Harbor, Eniwetok, and Ulithi, she arrived 6 April in the Okinawa area where she was employed as a screen vessel until 10 April. Gosselin then began convoy duty which took her to Guam and Saipan, returning to Okinawa 27 April.

From 27 April 1945 until the end of May, Gosselin was assigned at the Okinawa screen protecting the invasion area, shooting down one Japanese plane, taking several others under fire and rescuing a number of survivors and casualties from ships hit by suicide planes.

From 1 June 1945, Gosselin was in an upkeep status, mostly in Leyte Gulf, returning to Okinawa 17 July to form part of the reduced screen still being maintained. Gosselin departed Okinawa on 17 August 1945 in company with Reeves to rendezvous with the Third Fleet, then cruising south of Honshu. Joining the fleet, she was assigned to carry part of a Naval Assault Battalion for the occupation of Yokosuka Naval Base. Later, that assignment was changed to duty carrying press representatives and Navy photographers during the initial entrance into Sagami Wan and Tokyo Bay. Gosselin was one of the first group of ships, including Missouri (BB-63) (Adm. William F. Halsey, Jr.), Iowa (BB-61) (Rear Adm. Badger), and H.M.S. Duke of York (Adm. Sir Bruce Fraser, RN) to enter Sagami Wan on 27 August. The next day, she accompanied the light cruiserSan Diego (CL-53) into Tokyo Bay to begin the  occupation.

Gosselin was transferred 29 August 1945 to the task group commanded by Como. Rodger W. Simpson, USN, assigned to liberate and evacuate prisoners of war (POW). That same day, her boats were the first to reach Omori Camp, from which the first men were evacuated, and brought out the first boatloads of freed POWs. On 27 September, Gosselin berthed in front of the Port Director's office, Yokosuka, and served as a barracks ship for shore-based and transient men. She remained there until 15 December when she got underway for San Francisco, setting course via Eniwetok and Pearl Harbor. Gosselin discharged her passengers at San Francisco on 28 December, three days after Christmas.

Gosselin remained in the United States until 22 August 1946 when she cleared San Diego with Navy and Marine replacements bound for Yokosuka via Pearl Harbor and Eniwetok. Discharging her passengers at Yokosuka 13 December Gosselin returned to San Diego 16 November 1946. She operated out of here until 16 July 1948 when she departed again for the Orient. Arriving at Tsingtao, China, on 14 August 1948, Gosselin made that north China port her base of operations. She visited such ports as Shanghai and Nanking and occasionally operated in the Yangtze River during American efforts to stabilize the situation in China.

Gosselin departed Shanghai on 18 February 1949 and reached San Diego on 11 March. She decommissioned there on 11 July 1949 and was placed in reserve. She lay berthed with the San Diego Group, Pacific Reserve Fleet, until stricken from the Navy Register on 1 April 1964 and sold for scrapping.

Gosselin received one battle star for her World War II service. 

Published: Sun Aug 07 18:49:40 EDT 2016