Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Harveson (DE-316)

(DE-316: dp. 1,200; l. 306'; b. 36'7" ; dr. 8'7" ; s. 21 k.; cpl. 186; a. 3 3", 2 40mm., 8 20mm., 3 21" tt., 2 dct., 8 dcp., 1 dcp. (h.h.); cl. Edsall)

Harold Aloysius Harveson, born 7 August 1913 at Lake Charles, La., graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy 3 June 1937. After serving in Louisville and on the staff of the Pacific Fleet Scouting Force, Lt. (J.g.) Harveson was assigned to Utah 19 August 1941. Operating out of Pearl Harbor, the aged ex-battleship, converted to a target ship, served the fleet as the major antiaircraft training ship, as well as a key to developing carrier air-to-ship attack tactics. During the sneak attack on Pearl Harbor 7 December 1941, the Japanese concentrated much of their strike force on Utah in the assumption that she was carrier Saratoga. Torpedoed twice early in the attack, she had overturned and sunk by 0812. Like so many of her crew, Lt. Harveson gave his life in the opening moments of World War II.

Harveion (DE-316) was laid down by Consolidated Steel Corp., Orange, Tex., 9 March 1943; launched 22 May 1943; sponsored by Mrs. T. L. Herlong, mother; and commissioned at Orange 12 October 1943, Lt. Comdr. P. L. Sttnson, USCG, in command.

Manned entirely by a Coast Guard crew, Harveson completed shakedown out of Bermuda only to be seriously damaged in collison with a merchantman 15 December 1943, on a foggy night off the Virginia Capes. Repairs were completed at Portsmouth, Va., by February 1944, and the destroyer-escort joined Escort Division 22. Departing New York 1 March, Harveson escorted a convoy to Londonderry, Ireland, via Halifax. In the next 14 months she escorted nine more convoys carrying vitally needed supplies for the European theatre safely across the dangerous North Atlantic.

When V-E Day came, CortDiv 22 was ordered to the Pacific; and Harveson reached Pearl Harbor via the Panama Canal and San Diego 11 July to begin refresher training. Harveson was still engaged in tactical training at Pearl Harbor when Japan capitulated, but soon she participated in the occupation of the defeated enemy's homeland. Departing Harbor 3 September, she escorted a convoy LSTs to Japan, where she arrived Sasebo 24 September. During the next few weeks she operated along the coast of Honshu, escorting Mt. McEinley (AGC-7) and supporting occupation landings at Wakavama, Hiro, and Nagoya. She departed Yokohama for the United States 4 November and arrived Jacksonville, Fla., in December for duty with the Atlantic Fleet- She decommissioned at Green Cove Springs, Fla., 9 May 1947, and entered the Atlantic Reserve Fleet.

Harveson was towed to the Mare Island Navy Yard in 1950 for conversion to a radar picket ship. She recommissioned at Vallejo, Calif., 12 February 1951, Lt. Comdr. W. S. Slocnm III in command; and, as the first of a new class of radar picket ships, she was redesignated DER-316. After intensive tests and vigorous tactical training, Harveson joined Escort Squadron 10 at Newport, R.I., 30 May to begin duty as a radar picket ship. While on patrol, the former destroyer escort, outfitted with the most modern radar and early detection warning devices, cruised off the coast of the United States to provide adequate early warning of any enemy attack. From her usual station In the North Atlantic, Harveson also sailed to the Caribbean for frequent antisubmarine and tactical exercises.

Departing Newport 15 July 1957, Harveson reported for radar picket duty at Pearl Harbor 18 August. There she joined the Barrier Forces, Pacific Fleet, to strengthen America's warning system in the vast and lonely reaches of the Pacific. After almost 3 years of barrier patrols out of Hawaii, Harveson steamed to San Francisco for inactivation. She decommissioned 30 June 1960 and joined the Pacific Reserve Fleet, Stockton, Calif. Her name was struck from the Navy List 1 December 1966. She is scheduled to be used as a target.

Published: Mon Apr 18 17:48:28 EDT 2016