USS Don O. Woods (APD-118)

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For other ships of the same name, see ARM Usumacinta.
Career (United States)
Name: USS Don O. Woods (DE-674)
Namesake: Don O. Woods
Awarded: 13 June 1943
Builder: Dravo Corporation, Pittsburgh
Laid down: 1 December 1943
Launched: 9 February 1944
Reclassified: APD-118, before commissioning
Acquired: 26 May 1945
Commissioned: 28 May 1945
Decommissioned: 18 June 1946
Struck: 12 December 1963
Fate: transferred to Mexican Navy, 12 December 1963
Career (Mexico)
Name: ARM Usumacinta (B06)[1]
Namesake: Usumacinta River
Acquired: 12 December 1963
Renamed: ARM Miguel Hidalgo (B06), 1994[1]
Namesake: Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla
Renamed: ARM Usumacinta (E20)[1]
Struck: 16 July 2001[1]
General characteristics
Class & type: Rudderow-class destroyer escort, as ordered
Class & type: Crosley-class high speed transport, as completed
Displacement: 1,450 tons
Length: 306 ft (93 m)
Beam: 36 ft 10 in (11.23 m)
Draft: 13 ft (4.0 m)
Speed: 24 knots
Complement: 256
Armament: 1 x 5"

USS Don O. Woods (DE-721/APD-118) was a Crosley-class high-speed transport in the United States Navy built by Dravo Corporation, Neville Island, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Her keel was laid 1 December 1944 and then launched on 9 February 1944, sponsored by Mrs. H. R. Woods (mother of Hospital Apprentice Woods). Don O. Woods was reclassified APD-118 on 17 July 1944 and floated to Orange, Texas for completion as a high speed transport by the Consolidated Steel Corporation. She was commissioned there on 28 May 1945 with Lieutenant Commander L. H. Crosby, USNR, in command.

Don O. Woods sailed from Norfolk 9 August 1945 and was making her transit of the Panama Canal on the day hostilities ended between Japan and the United States. She called at San Diego and proceeded to Pearl Harbor, arriving 7 September. Five days later she got underway with US Army and US Navy passengers for Saipan, continuing to Leyte, where she arrived 7 October. She served in the Philippines until 23 January 1946 when she departed Manila for the west coast. Arriving at San Pedro, California on 13 February. She was placed out of commission in reserve 18 June 1946.

Don O. Woods was sold and transferred to the custody of Mexico in December 1963 and renamed Usumacinta (H-06), then redesignated (B-06) and renamed Miguel Hidalgo, her speed being reduced to 13 knots. Miguel Hidalgo was scheduled to be decommissioned from the Mexican Navy in the year 2000.

Namesake[edit]

Don O. Woods is named in honor of Hospital Apprentice First Class Don Otis Woods. He was born on 19 May 1922 in Kearney, Nebraska and enlisted in the Navy on 12 June 1940.

Hospital Apprentice Woods died of wounds received in enemy action on 8 August 1942 while serving with the Marines against Japanese forces on Gavutu, Solomon Islands. On his own courageous initiative, Woods, in an effort to rescue several injured Marines, waded into the sea near a rock cliff where numerous hostile snipers were menacing troops. Although repeatedly warned of his imminent peril, he refused to abandon his heroic work but continued, less than twenty-five yards from the enemy position, to render medical assistance to the helpless men until he himself was mortally wounded. He gallantly gave his life in the service of his country. As a result of his exceptional courage he was posthumously presented the Silver Star.

Awards[edit]

American Campaign Medal ribbon.svg American Campaign Medal
Asiatic-Pacific Campaign ribbon.svg Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal
World War II Victory Medal ribbon.svg World War II Victory Medal
Phliber rib.png Philippine Liberation Medal

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Wertheim, Eric, ed. (2007). "Mexico". The Naval Institute Guide to Combat Fleets of the World: Their Ships, Aircraft, and Systems (15th ed.). Annapolis, Maryland: Naval Institute Press. p. 472. ISBN 978-1-59114-955-2. OCLC 140283156. 

References[edit]