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  PT-35 (PTC-15)
USN
PT-Boat
77' Elco

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

Ship History
Built by Electric Boat Company (Elco) in Bayonne, NJ. Laid down April 3, 1941 as Motor Boat Submarine Chaser 15 (PTC-15) then reclassified PT-35 prior to completion. Launched June 19, 1941. Completed July 16, 1941. Assigned to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 1 (MTBS 1) under the command of Lt. William C. Specht, USN.

On August 12, 1941 to Motor Torpedo Boat Squadron 3 (MTBS 3). On August 16, 1941 one of six PT Boats including PT-31, PT-32, PT-33, PT-34, P-35 and PT-41 loaded aboard USS Guadalupe (AO-32) as deck cargo and transported to the Philippines during September 1941.

Wartime History
On March 11, 1942 at dusk, under the command of Ensign A. B. Akers plus PT-34 and PT-32 wait in Sisiman Bay for a launch with senior officers from Corregidor. PT-35 embarks Colonel Charles A. Willoughby, G-2, Lieutenant Colonel Le Grande A. Diller, Aide, Lieutenant Colonel Francis H. Wilson, Aide to Major General Richard K. Sutherland and Master Sergeant Paul P. Rogers, Secretary. Afterwards, 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-35 proceeds alone.

On March 12, 1942 in the afternoon, PT-35 missed the rendezvous with the other three PT Boats at Tagauayan (Tagawayan) and refuel using drums of fuel drums strapped to the deck. Afterwards, follows the coast of Negros to Silino Island then to Mindanao. On March 13, 1942 at 1:00am the weather turned poor with heavy seas and rain squalls and arrives arrives Cagayan on Mindanao PT-35 completed the daring 560 mile voyage through enemy patrolled seas with PT-41 and PT-34 arriving separately.

Afterwards, every member of the PT Boat Squadron that participated in the evacuation mission earned the Silver Star. After the passengers disembarked, the three PT Boats were hidden near Cagayan with the intention of patrolling off northern Mindanao.

Sinking History
On April 12, 1942 scuttled and burned to prevent capture at Cebu.

Relative
Kim (cousin)
"After his liberation, all the servicemen were told to surrender. My cousin and many of the others headed for the mountains and were going to try to make it to Australia. He and another buddy J. C. Chalker, an Army guy and several others plus three Filipinos somehow got a small power boat and headed out for Australia. Well, apparently they only made it to Celebes. When they landed the Dutch turned them over to the Japanese. The town was called as I was told Sarismanado, and the area of the common grave was called Liebonyat Garden.

The Japanese in turn killed them. I was told they were all beheaded and buried in this Liebonyat Garden in a common grave. Now, how the events of their bodies being found is not clear to me but, Joseph C. Chalker's body was recovered along with nine other bodies in this grave. I have spoken with his 90 year old sister who states she still has all the records given to her parents about who was buried there.

The letter states that 10 bodies were recovered. However, they were buried in St. Louis is the Jefferson Barracks Cemetery in a group grave but only eight bodies [section 82, site 219]. Now, my question is what happened to the 2 bodies? The cemetery only has record of 8 bodies but not 10 as the Chalker family was told. The cemetery also told me that my cousins body still was not recovered--so my feeling is he is still there on the island somewhere.

I know I still have investigations to do myself to get the exact location. My guess is it is somewhere in North Sulawesi possibly at Manado. That is a tourist spot and I think has an airport also, I know Manado is the northern part of the island. I have gotten this far finding information from the beginning of our family never being told or knowing any thing about his death to getting as close to finding the island on which he died."

References
At Close Quarters PT Boats in the United States Navy pages 3, 5, 7, 15-16, 18-21, 59, 450, 453, 484, 486, 488
Navy Source PT-35 (photos)

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Last Updated
April 28, 2021

 

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