Naval History and Heritage Command

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Oahu II (ARG-5)

(ARG-5: dp. 4,023 (It.); l. 441'6"; b. 56'11"; dr. 23'; s. 12 k.; cpl. 583; a. 1 5", 3 3", 4 40mm.; cl. Luzon; T. EC2-S-C1.)

Oahu is the third largest island in the Hawaiian chain on which Honolulu, the capital of Hawaii is located.


The second Oahu (ARG-5) was laid down as Caleb C. Wheeler, MCV hull 1782, 14 August 1943 by the BethlehemFairfield Shipyard, Inc., Baltimore, Md.; launched 9 September 1943; sponsored by Mrs. O. F. Hurt; acquired by the Navy from the Maritime Commission 15 September 1943; converted by the Maryland Drydock Co., Baltimore, Md.; and commissioned 4 April 1944, Comdr. Clyde Lovelace in command.

Following a Chesapeake Bay shakedown, the repair ship Oahu departed Hampton Roads, 16 May 1944, steaming south and then west. Transiting the Panama Canal, she headed out into the Pacific. On 8 July she arrived at Eniwetok and on the 11th began repairing the damaged vessels of the Pacific Fleet.

Oahu remained based at Eniwetok for the greater part of the next eight months. There she kept Allied vessels, naval and merchant, in trim and prepared them for the Philippine and Iwo Jima operations. Moving forward to Ulithi at the end of February, 1945, she serviced the ships gathering for the invasion of Okinawa during March and then returned to the Marshalls. Oahu continued her work at Eniwetok until 6 December when she got underway for the United States.

Arriving at San Pedro 25 December, Oahu, having repaired over two thousand ships during the war, was ordered to San Diego to complete repair and preinactivation work on vessels going into mothballs. On 22 November she herself was ordered inactivated, and decommissioned in January 1947. She was berthed at San Diego as a unit of the Pacific Reserve Fleet until transferred in July 1963 to the Maritime Administration and laid up at Suisan Bay. She remains there as a unit of the National Defense Reserve Fleet in 1970.

Oahu (AGR-5) received one battle star for World War II service.

Published: Mon Aug 17 09:38:57 EDT 2015