USS Presley

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United States
Name: Presley
Namesake: Sam Davis Presley
Builder: Consolidated Steel Corporation, Orange, Texas
Laid down: 6 June 1944
Launched: 19 August 1944
Commissioned: 7 November 1944
Decommissioned: 20 June 1946
Struck: 30 June 1968
Identification: DE-371
Fate: sold for scrapping 2 April 1970
General characteristics
Class and type: John C. Butler-class destroyer escort
Displacement: 1,350 tons
Length: 306 ft (93 m)
Beam: 36 ft 8 in (11.18 m)
Draft: 9 ft 5 in (2.87 m)
Propulsion: 2 boilers, 2 geared turbine engines, 12,000 shp (8,900 kW); 2 propellers
Speed: 24 knots (44 km/h)
Range: 6,000 nmi (11,000 km) at 12 kn (22 km/h; 14 mph)
Complement: 14 officers, 201 enlisted

USS Presley (DE-371) was a John C. Butler-class destroyer escort acquired by the U.S. Navy during World War II. The primary purpose of the destroyer escort was to escort and protect ships in convoy, in addition to other tasks as assigned, such as patrol or radar picket.

She was named in honor of Aviation Machinist’s Mate first class Sam Davis Presley who received the Navy Cross for his brave actions during the Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands.

Sam Davis Presley[edit]

Sam Presley enlisted in the Navy 7 November 1939. On 30 September 1942 he became an Aviation Machinist’s Mate first class.

As his ship, the aircraft carrier Enterprise, came under sustained enemy air attack, he voluntarily abandoned the shelter of his normal battle station. Climbing into a plane parked on the flight deck, he manned the flexible guns in the rear cockpit and commenced an effective fire against the attacking aircraft. As the battle continued, a bomb explosion blew the plane overboard. AM1 Presley was listed as missing in action and presumed dead 27 October 1942.

Operational history[edit]

The vessel's keel was laid down by the Consolidated Steel Corp., Ltd. at their yard in Orange, Texas on 6 June 1944. The destroyer escort was launched on 19 August 1944; sponsored by Mrs. Willie Lynn Presley, and commissioned on 7 November 1944, Lt. Comdr. Richard S. Paret, USNR, in command.

After shakedown off Bermuda, Presley transited the Panama Canal 24 January 1945 and proceeded to Pearl Harbor for further training. She arrived at Noumea 22 March, and departed 3 May to escort a group of transports to Leyte Gulf. She subsequently paused at Manus, Saipan, and Ulithi before making two trips to Okinawa. The end of the war found her anchored in Ulithi Harbor.

On 19 September Presley proceeded to Guam for duty, making two trips to Truk where she served as harbor patrol and station ship pending the occupation of that enemy post by U.S. forces. On 5 November the ship was ordered to the United States to be placed in an inactive status. Presley decommissioned on 20 June 1946, and joined the Pacific Reserve Fleet berthed at San Diego, California. She was struck from the Naval Vessel Register 30 June 1968. On 2 April 1970 she was sold for scrap and broken up.

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