Lee Harrison Stewart, seaman apprentice and seaman, USN-EV, served on the USS Hoquiam (PF-5) as a radioman during the first two years of the Korean “Conflict” (later labeled a “war.”) In this third book in his series on the USS Hoquiam PF-5, he brings the experiences of young sailor in the 1950s to life. The Hoquiam, after being recommissioned in Yokosuka, Japan, sailed in harm’s way off the east coast of North Korea. It participated in all the east coast landings and the Hungnam evacuation.
This story begins where Road to Hungnam ended—back in Yokosuka on New Year’s Eve, 1950, for a few weeks of pier-side overhaul, as the crew winds down from Hungnam. There is hard work preparing the ship for a new assignment to Task Force Ninety-Five off Wonsan, North Korea. Still, there’s time for romance and hijinks on liberty in Yokosuka and later in Sasebo, Japan.
The Hoquiam’s crew sees a full range of work in the next assignment period—including work they detest with the Service Force, firing remote-controlled target aircraft for other ships to shoot at, days spent on submarine patrol (when they doubled as targets for the North Korean or Chinese gunners in Wonsan caves), convoy escort duty, and the best assignment of all—shooting at the potbellied narrow-gauge trains coming down from Mongolia. Eventually, the crew of the Hoquiam again sails for Yokosuka and prepares for yet another trip to the Korean bomb line.
About Mark Douglas
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Published October 11, 2012
Action & Adventure, Literature & Fiction.