Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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(AOG-43: dp. 2,270 (lim.); 1. 220'6"; b. 37'; dr. 13'1" (lim.); s. 10 k.; cpl. 62; a. 1 3", 2 40mm., 3 20mm.; cl. Sequatchie; T. T1-M-A2)

A river in western New Mexico which rises in Catron County, drains a portion of the Apache National Forest, and flows into the San Francisco River. The name, Tularosa, which is derived from the Spanish and means reddish reeds or willows, has also been given to a village in Otero County, New Mexico.

Tularosa (AOG-43) was laid down under a Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 2069) on 31 October 1944 at Bayonne, N.J., by the East Coast Shipyards, Inc.; launched on 17 December 1944; sponsored by Miss Patricia Hefferman; acquired by the Navy on 4 January 1945; and commissioned at the New York Navy Yard on 10 January 1945, Lt. (jg.) Rex Montgomery Stagner in command.

On 4 February 1945, the new gasoline tanker steamed southward for shakedown training in the Chesapeake Bay. On 9 March, she and Dour (AM-223) got underway for Bermuda. On the 12th, she moored at St. George's Island to discharge barrels of kerosene which she had taken on at Norfolk. A few days later, she called at Aruba to take on gasoline and diesel oil; then set her course, via the Panama Canal, for the west coast; and arrived at San Diego on 8 April. She departed the west coast on the 12th and reached Pearl Harbor on the 23d.

In May, she made a voyage to Canton Harbor, in the Phoenix Islands; and then returned to Pearl Harbor on the 21st, Throughout her time in the Pacific, Tularosa operated out of Oahu, carrying aviation fuel and gasoline to Johnston Island and Midway. She continued her duties into 1946, departed Pearl Harbor on 30 January, and returned to the west coast on 12 February.

Assigned to the 12th Naval District for disposition, Tularosa was stripped and was decommissioned on 23 April 1946. Her name was struck from the Navy list on 21 May 1946, and she was transferred to the Maritime Commission on 28 August.

Published: Mon Oct 19 08:52:19 EDT 2015