Built by Electric Launch Company Ltd. (Elco) in Bayonne, New Jersey. Laid down on September 9, 1942. Launched November 24, 1942. Commissioned December 8, 1942 as PT-164. Initially, this PT Boat was painted with a dazzle camouflage scheme.
Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron Ten (PTRon 10 / Squadron 10). This PT Boat was transported overseas to the South Pacific. Nicknamed "Fubar". This PT Boat operated from Rendova PT Boat Base (Lumbari Island / Todd City) conducting combat missions in the Central Solomons.
On July 20, 1943 PT-164 with PT-168 and PT-166 patrolled to the south of Ferguson Passage. Returning from the patrol, the PT Boats were spotted and attacked by four B-25 Mitchells believing they were enemy vessels, as they were briefed that no friendly vessels in operating in the area. During the attack, gunners aboard PT-166 and PT-164 returned fire. Each PT Boat was hit. Aboard the PT Boats one officer and ten men were wounded. During the attack, PT-166 caught fire and the crew abandoned ship before the vessel exploded. Damaged by the PT Boat's defensive fire, B-25C "The Worry Bird" 41-13153 crashed nearby. Afterwards, PT-164 rescued the crew of PT-166 then returned to base. Meanwhile, PT-168 went to the crash site of the bomber and rescued the three surviving crew.
On August 1, 1943 at dusk, eighteen Japanese aircraft attacked Rendova PT Boat Base (Lumbari Island / Todd City) off Rendova Island. A bomb hit both PT-117 and PT-164 that were docked together, destroying both PT-Boats and killing two men. The bomb blast knocked two torpedoes off PT-164 that activated and ran erratically inside Rendova Harbor until both came ashore on the beach without detonating. Officially, PT-164 was written off by the U. S. Navy during June 1943.
On August 1, 1943 sunk by Japanese aircraft at PT Boat Base (Todd City) in Rendova Harbor off Lumbaria Island.
Impact "Moral: Don't be Trigger Happy" volume 2 no. 5 May 1944 pages 36-37
[Page 36] Artwork "Double Tragedy off Munda Point" by A. Deydenfrost
[Page 37] Double Tragedy off Munda Point last year [July 20, 1943] is reconstructed from the narrative of a pilot back from the S. W. Pacific. A B-25 crew, on patrol, failed to identify two [three] U.S. torpedo boats [PT-166, PT-168 and PT-164]. The boats possibly had opened fire on him. The B-25 came down and strafed, sinking a boat [PT-166]. Then a Navy fighter pilot capped the tragedy of errors. He may have made a mistake in identification or might have thought the B-25 [B-25C Mitchell 41-13153] to be Jap-operated. At any rate he shot it down."
At Close Quarters PT Boats in the United States Navy pages 119-120, 121 (photos), 461, 487, 488, 562 (index)
Are you a relative or associated with any person mentioned?
Do you have photos or additional information to add?
November 16, 2018