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77' Elco

40 Tons
77' x 19' 11" x 4' 6"
2 x Twin 50 cal
4 x Torpedo Tubes

Ship History
Built by Electric Boat Company (Elco) in Bayonne, NJ. Laid down March 19, 1941. Launched June 6, 1941. Completed July 10, 1941. Assigned to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 2 (MTBRon 2).

On August 12, 1941 assigned to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 3 (MTBRon 3). On August 16, 1941 loaded as deck cargo aboard USS Guadalupe (AO-32) as one of six PT Boats including PT-31, PT-32, PT-33, PT-34, PT-35 and PT-41 to the Philippines and operated from Cavite Navy Yard.

Wartime History
On December 10, 1941 Japanese planes attacked Cavite Navy Yard and cause heavy damage. After the raid, the PT Boats helped transport injured personnel to the hospital at Cañacao. Afterwards, Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 3 (MTBRon3) move to Sisiman Bay on the Bataan Peninsula. Afterwards, PT-32 suffered an accidental explosion in the engine room and disabled the boat for weeks while it was repaired.

On December 17, 1941 at night PT-32, PT-34 and PT-35 got underway after observing a large explosion and observing flashing lights in the sea and rescued survivors of SS Corregidor a ship tranporting evacuees from Manila bound for Australia and accidentially hit a U.S. sea mine and sank immediately. In total, the three PT Boats rescued 296 passengers with PT-32 cramming 196 aboard before they were unloaded on Corregidor Island and to SS Si-Kiang at Mariveles.

On February 1, 1942 PT-32 under the command of Lt(jg) Vincent E. Schumacher with Lieutenant DeLong aboard for a patrol off Bataan with Maryanne but was only able to achieve 22 knots. At 9:30pm spotted a large vessel Japanese minelayer Yaeyama bound for Subic Bay then turned towards Bataan. Closing to attack, PT-32 was caught in searchlights and Yaeyama opened fire with the shells landing 500 yards ahead. PT-32 fired her starboard torpedo as a second and third salvo both landed astern by 200 yards then fired her port torpedo and withdrew lightened at a speed of 25 knots. Schumacher claimed an explosion aboard the ship with debris visible in the searchlight beam and a pause in firing that was believed to be the second torpedo exploding then gunfire resumed. In fact, Yaeyama only suffered minor damage from what was reported as a dud shell fired by a shore battery.

On March 11, 1942 at 7:15pm under the command of Lt.(jg) V. E. Schumacher embarks passengers from the Quarantine Dock at Mariveles including Brig. Gen. Spencer B. Akin (Signals Officer, USFFE); Brig. Gen. Hugh J. Casey, Engineering Officer, USFFE, Brig. Gen. William F. Marquat, Anti-aircraft Artillery Officer, USFFE, Brig. Gen. Harold H. George, Air Officer, USFFE and Lt. Col. Joe R. Sherr, Asst. Signals Officer, USFFE. Meanwhile, PT-34 and PT-32 wait in Sisiman Bay for a launch with senior officers from Corregidor. Afterwards, the trio rendezvous in Manila Bay with PT-41 with MacArthur aboard. By 9:15pm, the four PT Boats navigate the minefield in Manila Bay then proceed southward. During the night the four PT Boats become separated and PT-32 experiences engine trouble with only two engine running and as a result had to jettison their deck fuel drums to save weight and maintain speed.

On March 12, 1942 in the afternoon arrives Tagauayan (Tagawayan). With only one engine running and without the deck fuel drums to refuel, P-32 was unable to continue the mission. Instead, her passengers were transfered aboard PT-41 and PT-34 that departed at 6:00pm. Afterwards, Schumacher and his crew remain with PT-32.

refuels using drums of fuel drums strapped to the deck. PT-32 had one engine running and had to jettison their deck fuel drums and was unable to continue and the crew and passengers were

On March 13, 1942 USS Permit (SS-178) arrives and the crew scuttle the boat to prevent capture.

Fates of the Crew
The crew were transported aboard USS Permit (SS-178) to Fremantle. Afterwards, every member of the PT Boat Squadron that participated in the evacuation mission earned the Silver Star.

At Close Quarters PT Boats in the United States Navy pages 6 (accidental explosion), 7-8 (rescue), 14-15 (February 1, 1942 Yaeyama attack), 16-17 (March 11, 1942 evacuation), 451, 453
Combined Fleet - IJN Minelayer Yaeyama
"1 February 1942: Subic Bay. Yaeyama is stationed off Quinauan Point to cover the landing of Major Kimura's battalion. While the landing boats are being attacked by air, artillery and infantry weapons, Lt (jg) Vincent E. Schumacher’s USS PT-32 attacks the minelayer. YAEYAMA illuminates PT-32 with her searchlight and opens fire with four or five salvos from her two main 120-mm guns. The PT boat tries unsuccessfully to shoot out the searchlight with machine gun fire, then fires two torpedoes. As he retires, Schumacher’s crew observes explosions on the minelayer, but later YAEYAMA reports only slight damage from a dud round fired by shore batteries."
Naval History and Heritage Command (NHHC) - U.S. Navy Motor Torpedo Boat Operational Losses
"PT-32 destroyed to prevent capture, Sulu Sea, 13 Mar. 1942."
Naval History and Heritage Command (NHHC) - Bataan and Corregidor December 1941–May 1942
"Torpedo boats: PT-31, PT-32, PT-33, PT-34, PT-35, PT-41"
Navy Source PT-32 (photos)

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Last Updated
April 28, 2021


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