Lynden Lambrecht

 

life on the lex

 

Submitted by: Scott W. Boness bowhunter@lakefield.net

Nephew of Lynden Lambrecht

 

Subject: My uncles memoirs June 1, 1944 - Feb 26 1945

 

                                                                          Life on the Lexington 

                                                                The memoirs of Lynden Lambrecht 

Torpedoman V-5

 

June 1,1944 

                 Left T.I. Calif, U.S.A. for Pearl Harbor aboard U.S.S. Sea Corpral, Army   transport, lousy chow, rough trip, hard on dry land sailors!

 

June 7th

                 Tied up to dock at Fleet Landing Pearl. Got our first news of landing in France.

 

June 8th

                 Tranfered to Aiea Rec Bks. until recently this was just a cane field.

Rough Bks, no windows, pleasant stay, first class, gold bricks, no work for us. Eat, sleep,

beer, movies, ball games, smokers! Lot of big league ball players, Di Maggio, Mize, and others. Slipped out for liberty in Honolulu, this is the life!

 

July 4th

                 Tranfered to U.S.S. Orvetta. Breakdown first time so we didn't sail. This is some Barge, the Japs wouldn't even want it. Several Libertys.

 

July 23rd

                 Lift anchor bound for Marshall Islands. Several boys drew Pearl duty, good deal, Russian Markovich, Al Leach, Dick Leonard, and I left of Mingvs' commandoes. Slim Lambertson,Lord Smith, Ole Olsen, Al Olinger, Bill Rhoads from Keyport among the unlucky passengers. Russian has five days P&P for goldbricking. Ours is legal just now. 

 

July 31st

                 Anchored in Roi Harbor for a day.

 

Aug 2nd

                 Anchored in Eniwetok, Marshall Islands. Third and fifth fleets based here.

 

Aug 2nd -13th

                 Laying around, working, party now and then.

     

Aug 13th   

                 Transfered to U.S.S. Lexington, Tokyo Rose's "Blue Ghost"

 

Aug 13th - 19th

                 Getting squared away. Only 3 openings in torpedo gang for the nine of us. Lucky to be one of the three.

 

 

 

Aug 19th - 29th                  

                 Working on fish. One day off for beer party on Red Island. More munitions than ship ever had aboard before.

 

Aug 29th

                 Lifted anchor with task force "8" Admiral Marc Mitcher fast carrier Co. aboard.

 

Sept 6th

                 Have criss crossed equator, bald head to show for it - First fighter sweeps over Palau

 

Sept 7th - 8th

                 Many strikes, no opposition. 12,000 landings

 

Sept 9th - 10th

                 Strikes against Mindanao P.I.

 

Sept 12th

                 Raids on Cebu fighters get 14 planes.

 

Sept 13th

                 Still Cebu, task force, jumped by two Jap. Bomb miss by 100 yards. First I've  seen.

 

Sept 14th

                 Cebu - - -

 

Sept 15th-20th

                 Cover invasion of Pelileu - not much for us to do - Can see star shell at night - Two buddies of mine - Sauce Klein & Bud Christoffel ashore with 1st Marines.

 

Sept 21st

                 Strikes against Manila. Out spearheading  again, no bogies, surprising many Jap planes and ships hit.

 

Sept 22nd

                 Meat balls out this morning, no damage, could see land this morning. Pilots had good hunting, many ships and planes, most of them  on fields.

 

Sept 23rd - 24th

                 Going south, Raids on Corin Islands

 

Sept 27th     

                 Dropped anchor at north end of Palau Is.

 

Oct 2nd

                 Many Japs on island within sight, sail every night, load bombs at day.

 

Oct 3rd

                 Anchored at Ulithi - Japs have evacuated recently. This will be Our new base. Bad storms recently, 4 cans go aground

 

Oct 6th

                 Left Ulithi ( Scuttlebut says for Formosa )

 

Oct 6th - 9th

                 Traveling north fast, fuel from tanker.

 

Oct 10th

                 Strikes against Okinawa and other islands of Rukyv group. 250 miles below Japan Hits on two A.K.S. some planes shot up bad.

 

Oct 11th

                 Raids over Luzon and fuel from tankers.

 

Oct 12th

                 Formosa - A.T. General quarters 22 hours straight. Not much to eat, no sleep. Plenty of shooting today, 3 planes splashed at dusk over next task group. They burn dam good. Tojo lamp lighters light up the sea for miles around. My mind is made up I am ready to go home any time. Like to see the man who wasn't scared! Big air battles over Formosa.

 

Oct 13th  

                 Formosa same story, plenty of targets and A.A. planes coming back badly shot up, some missing, these pilots have guts. Used five fish with good results, under almost constant attack, ships guns splashed two more Japs. C.L. Cambard took a fish. Cans takes her under tow. Toughest going Lexington has ever seen the salts say!

 

Oct 14th

                 Formosa again. Everyone is damn tired, no real sleep or chow for five days. Several near misses from bombs.These Japs were good pilots. A dozen or two broke into task group about 10 feet off the water, fish all over the place, not many planes get away. One suicide hit C.L. Reno.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oct 15th

                 Still Formosa, 4 days straight is unusual but theres still many targets. Only two hours sleep. Many bogies around, task group C.A.P. having field day. Houston (C.L.) takes two fish. Her and Cambars both safe. Pilots have smashed all records. Total planes in five days will go over 500. Leaving tonight Damn lucky to get out with these light casualities.

 

Oct 16th

                 Out to fuel. Jap fleet reported 300 miles N.W. Several casualities from crew drinking alchol injectionfluid from F.6.

 

Oct 17th

                 Jap fleet backs down.

 

Oct 18th

                 Low on chow, beans and spam. fueled

 

Oct 20th - 21st

                 This is it. Supported Leyte landings

 

Oct 22nd

                 Fuel from tanker. Head back toward Leyte.

 

Oct 23rd

                 Our task group is closest group in toward Leyte. Under attack all day. Our task group pilots break all records. Really a crack air group in " 19 ". Essex Comm. splashes 9 Japs alone. C.V.L. Princeton hit just off starboard beam. Explosions and flames hundreds of feet in the air. Later sunk by our on cans. Many dive bombers. Our ships guns get two more. Many near misses. It took more than luck to get us out of this today. C.A.P. did a good job. G.Q. all night

 

Oct 24th

                 Jap fleet out again. Reinforced by other task groups.

 

Oct 25th

                 Battle for Leyte Gulf. Hit and smashed Jap fleet. 4 flat tops, dozen of crusiers and battle wagons, many cans, fleets guns sink the cripples after the pilots smash them up. We used 27 fish alone, excellant results. Today was the day.

 

Oct 26th

                 Knocking out a few stragglers, 125 survivers come aboard from cans who picked them off the Princeton.

 

Oct 27th - 30th

                 East for Ulithi.  Boy it'll be good to get back, should get some chow again.

 

Oct 30th

                 Anchored in Ulithi

 

Oct 31st

                 Admiral Mitcher leaves ship for U.S.A. he's tops.

 

Nov 1st

                 Lift anchor steaming south for Manus in the Admirality Islands. Headed for 5 days relaxation, sleep and beer.

 

Nov 2nd

                 Jap fleet reported out again. Change course towards Leyte - lost contact.

 

Nov 3rd - 4th

                 Strikes against Manila

 

Nov 5th

                 Manila Bay again. (Big T ) C.A.P. leaves 3 suicide planes in , shot one down, another crashes in flames against our aft island structure. Quad 5 (40mm) wiped out,  (Slim is on 7). Group of 20mm wiped out, 46 dead, 120 injured. Lost one fellow from the shop and two wounded. Lot of swell guys gone. Not a nice site to look at.

 

Nov 6th

                 Manila again despite many guns out if commission. Dam hard on crew. Japs around again today, plenty scared, wish we would have got that vacation.

 

Nov 7th

                 Headed back to base. Large burial at sea. Kamikazes parachute still in radar screen. Don't care for soveniors.

 

Nov 9th

                 Anchored in Ulithi. U.S.S Jason repair ship comes along side. Dreams of state side repair job shattered. Wounded  taken aboard hospital ship. (Flat tops - Intrepid, Belleau Woods, and Franklin, states bound for battle repairs)

 

Nov 9th - 19th

                 Repairs, new paint job.

 

Nov 20th

                 Six two man subs slipped by anti sub nets. Sank tanker near us. Smoke thousands of feet in air. Cans and D.E.'s dropped depth charges. Reports of Jap sailors in water. One sub grounded on reef.

                

 

Dec 1st

                 Left Ulithi with Admiral Bogan aboard. Now in new task force.

 

Dec 2nd - 7th

                 Gunnery practice.

 

Dec 8th

                 Anchored in Ulithi.

 

Dec 11th

                 Underway.

 

Dec 12th

                 Steering casuality. Almost hit B.B. New Jersey ( to bad we didn't ) Admiral Halsey is aboard her.

 

Dec 14th

                 Strikes over Luzon.

 

Dec 15th - 16th - 17th

                 Fighter patrol night and day to keep Japs down while Mindoro is invaded. Clark field one of main targets.

 

Dec 18th

                 Steaming for Ulithi. Fueling on way in.

 

Dec 24th

                 Drop anchor. Ulithi atoll. Xmas Eve, Xmas party and good chow. Work as usual.

 

Dec 30th

                 All loaded , many rockets. Big E. returns from Pearl loaded with night fighters. Underway. Tranfered torpedomen to V.5. Ordinance, not so hot.

 

Jan 1st. 1945

                 Wish I was home to help celebrate last night, instead of in sack by 8 P.M.

 

Jan 2nd

                 Headed north east.

 

Jan 3rd - 4th

                 Damn chilly out. Hit Formosa. Damn few Japs. Fuel from tanker.

 

 

 

Jan 6th - 7th

                 Hit Luzon. Preparing way for its invasion.

 

Jan 8th

                 Hit Formosa. Sail through Formosa straits into China sea.

 

Jan 9th

                 Invasion via Lingayen Gulf. Not as much opposition as expected.

 

Jan 12th

                 Raid shipping Camiron Bay Fr.Indo China. Sank 5 A.K.S. and light cruiser. Three hits with our fish. No air opposition.

 

Jan 13th

                 Fuel from tanker and air searchs. Pilot from Hancock broke formation and landed on Jap air strip. Why is a big mystery. Other Pilot strafe and burned plane.

 

Jan 14th

                 Scouting for Jap fleet. Picked up 5 Chinks from life raft.

 

Jan 15th

                 24 today. Getting old. Strikes over Hong Kong, China. Heavy A.A. Bad weather. Several bogies splashed by C.A.P. G.Q. all day.

 

Jan 16th

                 Hong Kong. Weather good, many targets, used 5 fish 3 hits. Many A.K.'s damaged or sunk. A.A. is terrific. Many planes lost over target, others damaged. Searches often jumped by Jap. patrols.

 

Jan 17th - 18th - 19th

                 Fueled cans. Searches and C.A.P.

 

Jan 20th

                 G.Q. several times during day and night. Passing through Batan Island north of Luzon. Japs seem to shuttle back and forth from Luzon and Formosa. C.A.P. splash 10 assorted planes. All task forces fired at dusk. No actual attacks on ships. Going out of China sea. Glad to get out. Low on chow and no mail.

 

Jan 21st

                 Formosa. Little opposition over targets. Pilots report many P38's & B24's Luzon fields. Must now be in use. Other task groups have attacks. T hit by dive bombers. 10 Japs shot down. Hancock on our port quarters damaged when one of her T.B.M.'s cracked up with depth charges.

 

 

Jan 22nd

                 Hit Okinawa.

 

Jan 23rd

                 Fuel from tanker.

 

Jan 24th - 25th

                 MAIL. Steaming south 

 

Jan26th

                 Dropped the hook at Ulithi Atolls.

 

Jan 27th - Feb 9th

                 Loading supplies. 17 new fish. One beach party.

 

Feb 10th

                 Underway. Air group "9" aboard. Gunnery.

 

Feb 11th

                 Heading north. 90 miles west of Guam.

 

Feb 12th

                 Air group practicing attacks.

 

Feb 14th

                 Fuel from tanker.

 

Feb 15th

                 Start speed run into Tokyo. This maybe rugged. 1 Betty splashed, 1 Sampan sunk.

 

Feb 16th -17th

                 TOKYO. Weather poor. Total for our task group 3 flat tops, 146 shot out of air, many destroyed on ground, two plane factorys hard hit. No Japs reached task groups.

 

Feb 18th

                 Fueled destroyers.

 

Feb 19th

                 Covering two Iwo Jima invasions.

 

Feb 20th

                 Fueled and loaded ammo. First time ammo ever loaded underway. MAIL. Bogies at night, task group fired. New B.B. Missouri splashed two. Sara reported hit many times. She's fresh from training duty at Pearl. Bismark Sea C.V.E. reported sunk.

 

Feb 21st

                 Bogies again. Big E. joins us. She was with Sara. Both carriers had all night fighter air groups.

 

Feb 22nd - 26th

                 Iwo again. Rugged going ashore. We can hear the fire directors over our R.B.D. they must be using S.O.2 C.S. for this work. By the sound of it you would think its just practice. Using Many Cans, Cruisers, B.B.S, for support. Planes dropping everything including fire bombs.

 

Feb 27th

                 Back to Tokyo. Cloudy. Pilots ran into snow. Still manage to get insome good strikes.

 

Feb 28th

                 Heading south. Strikes on Kure cancelled because of bad weather. This is Japan's best Naval base.

 

March 1st

                 Strikes over Okinawa and Rokyo Island. Many photo planes used. This might be next group invaded or so schuttlebut goes.

 

March 2nd

                 South bound for Ulithi.

 

March 6th

                 Anchored in Ulithi Atoll.

 

March 7th - 8th

                 Unloading supplies - straight dope - We're State side bound  WOW ! ! !

 

March 9th

                 Lifted anchor with C.L. Boston and C.V.L. San Jacinto.

 

March 10th

                 Two suicide Japs raid Ulithi. One C.V. hit.

 

March 12th

                 Anchor at Eniwetok, M.I.

 

March 14th

                 Underway for Pearl.

 

 

March 22nd

                 Docked at Ford Island, Pearl Harbor.

 

March 23rd

                 Underway for states.

 

March 25th -26th

                 Removed warheads from fish. Hit storm and had one hell of a time keeping 600 lbs of torpex from crawling in your rack.

 

March 27th

                 Puget Sound, U.S.A. Anchor at sub nets. Unloading ammo. Reports from the fleet having rugged time in South Japan and Rukyo Island. Kamikazes hit several flat tops. Thank God we missed this one. Hope they don't cut our leaves short. Invasion of Okinawa soon.

 

March 28th

                 First leave party off. 21 days. Sara and T.- in.

 

March 29th - 30th

                 Worked 24 out of 32 hours and then had liberty. Plenty tired. Ah that beer is good.

 

March 30th

                 Fire watches. Good chow. Liberty.

 

Till April 19th

                 Nice chicks working on ship. This is the duty. Wasp hit at Okinawa returns. Mitchers flagship.

 

April 20th

                 (Left eve of 17th via plane for Chicago) Leave offically starts. 22days of living.

 

April 21st

                 Train from Chicago to Milwaukee. Spent night there. HOME this is it. First time since Jan 44. Great to be back. Old buddies gone and gas rationing only signs of war.

 

May 9th

                 Leave home hope not for long.

 

May 11th

                 Hit Bremevton with ski of Milwaukee spent last night in Seattle.

 

May 13th

                 Trial run in Sound. Tranfered 3 T.M.V. and brought 2 aboard.

 

May 15th

                 Trial run. Loading ammo supplies.

 

 

May 22nd

                 Frisco bound.

 

May 23rd

                 Gunnerys. No more 20 m.m. gun stations.

 

May 24th

                 Tied up at Alameda, Frisco Bay

 

May 26th

                 Mouse, Ole, and I lower Frisco champaygne supplys. Big night.

 

May 27th

                 Take 100 tiny tims aboard (1200lb rockets) Hard day. Our vitamens from last night don't help any. Les came aboard for several hours.

 

May 28th

                 Last state side liberty.

 

May 29th

                 Left for Pearl and points west loaded with Medium bombers. Gunnery on the way.

 

June 4th

                 Pearl.

 

June 5th

                 Liberty.

 

June 6th

                 Left for gunnery and air group drill. A.G. 94 aboard. F6 F's, F4 V's, S.B. 2 C's, T.B.M's.

 

June 11th

                 Back at Pearl. Liberty. 5 new T.M.V's. 

 

June 13th

                 Left Pearl with C.V. Hancock and C.L.V. San Jacinto.

 

 

June 14th - 19th

                 Gunnery practice for air group.

 

June 20th

                 Strike Wake. Practice for pilots. Set ships record for Ammo used in one day. Worked on rockets. Couldn't stand many days like today.

 

June 21st - 25th

                 Leyte P.I. bound. Jap subs hit two A.K.'s near by.

 

June 25th

                 Dropped anchor in San Pedro Bay. History was made here. Started loading supplys. One Rec. Party. Don't care for country.

 

July 1st

                 Underway for Japan.

 

July 7th

                 Sub contacts off Iwo.

 

July 10th

                 Tokyo. No opposition. Aircraft hard to find.

 

July 11th - 12th

                 Fuel Cans, head north.

 

July 13th

                 Hokkaido, north most of Japan's homeland.

 

July 14th - 15th

                 Hokkaido, B.B. Pound beach, wipe out several steel mills, Pilots sink Hokkaido ferrys. Good intelligence, exact time schedules of ferrys Known. Some air opposition.

 

July 16th

                Spot British fleet while fueling. The war must be almost over then. Not impressed by it.

 

July 17th

                 Tokyo Bay

 

July 18th

                 Tokyo Bay. Pound Jap B.B. Nagoto. Escorts pound beach.

 

 

July 19th - 22nd

                 Bad weather.

 

July 24th

                 Kure. Damaged several carriers and remainder of Jap fleet. Heavy A.A.

 

July 25th

                 Kolbe. Hit A.K.'s in Harbor, heavy A.A.

 

July 30th

                 Kure again.

 

Aug 1st

                 Fuel two T.M.V.'s off on tanker. Bad weather

 

Aug 2nd - 9th

                 Bad weather. Keeps zomies down. Russians in war on July 8th, good news. First atomic bomb dropped. Berry A.O.M. killed, swell kid.

 

Aug 10th

                 Dope on atomic bomb, sounds too good to be true. Poor Japs. Task group flyers destroy 89 aircraft, sink one D.E. & damaged a  D.D.

 

Aug 11th - 12th

                 Fuel, supplys & ammo. Hear Japs want to surrender, sounds swell.

 

Aug 13th

                 Tokyo. Pilots report Japs hold A.A. unless actual bombing runs are made. C.A.P. splash 17 airborne Japs around task force. Mostly Judys torp. planes. Man walks into prop while loading bombs on hanger deck, funeral tomorrow. AL Leach 21 today.

 

Aug 14th

                 Fuel. Landing partys packed, ready to go.

 

Aug 15th

                 Tokyo. First strikes off, radioed to drop bombs in sea when Truman announces Japs quit. Halsey gives V. speech. Bonn Homme Richards damaged in bomb explosion, not serious. Marine accidently shot himself while checking his rifle.

 

Aug 16th

                 Special V.J. day church service, V.J. chow, and 2 bottles of beer to splice main brass. Why don't we do this more often? Wars end hasn't caused too much excitement. Point system, a single man don't rate at all. Fleet comes together as a unit to have pictures made.

 

Aug 17th

                 Fuel,chow, mail. Many A.P.A. join us to remove landing forces. Take over Marine's 20's.

 

Aug 18th

                 Admiral Sherman makes Lex his flag ship.

 

Aug 22nd

                 Patrol Japs. Taking many pics.

 

Aug 23rd - 24th

                 Patrol search for P.W. camps. Pics show P.W. waiving and raising cane.

 

Aug 25th

                 Drop P.W. food and supplys. Don't mind this job at all.

 

Aug 26th

                 P.W. supplys.

 

Aug 30th

                 Sherman changes flag to Wasp. She may be our relief but her flight deck was twisted in typhoon. She may have to go back for repairs.

 

Aug 31st

                 Transfered from T-F 38-1 to 38-3. Saw home islands several times today.

 

Sept 2nd

                 Sherman again raises flag. Wasp to U.S.A. Sherman & Capt Robbins fly to Japan.

 

Sept 4th

                 Censorship lifted.

 

Sept 5th

                 Lex. first C.V. ever to enter Tokyo Bay. Anchor off Yokohama at 1500.

 

Sept 6th

                 Lift anchor at 1730 with fleet landing forces aboard.

 

Sept 7th

                 Mail. Return Marines to their ship.

 

Sept 8th - 9th

                 Provisions and fuel. Chow is very low, Beans and more beans.

 

 

Sept 10th

                 T-F-38-3 enters Tokyo Bay. Adm. takes flag ashore. Anchor off Yokohama. Mail.

 

Sept 11th - 14th

                 At anchor taking on supplys. Few men getting liberty. Report Japs starved but friendly. Slim leaves for discharge, Mouse and Grady for school. Execs Rep aboard.

 

Sept 15th

                 Lift anchor. ( 1 ) Striker reports from - T -. Chrystal ball says state side by

X mas. I wonder. In reply to Co. Ser. force message. In regard to quality of 3rd fleet food. Halsey reports " Quanity insuffcient to report on Quality - He ain't kidding beans 3 times a day is a little to much.

 

Sept 16th - 23rd

                 Patrols.

 

Sept 24th

                 Anchor at Siapah to take aboard air group 92 - air group 94, will leave for U.S.

Exect. Off. Ahron leaves ship. Underway at 1500.

 

Sept 28th

                 Anchored at Eniwetok, Marshall Islands. Mail call. Painting ship, loading supplys. Beach partys every 3 or 4 days, still not much beer. First time ashore in 3 months.

 

Oct 1st

                 Little dope on our last 5 weeks of the war. 2,172 sorties flown, 471 tons of bombs, 2,782 rockets used, 191 planes destroyed, 64 drops, 176 damaged, many ships sunk or damaged, trains and factories pounded, 3,000,000 gals of fuel used and 800,000 gals. of aviation gas.

 

Oct 4th

                 Lift anchor bound for Tokyo. Ad. has flag aboard.

 

Oct 13th

                 Arrive in Tokyo Bay, anchor in Yokosuka Harbor. Ran into typhoon on way. Okinawa took a beating from it.

 

Oct 14th - 24th

                 Ships work. A few liberty in Tokyo.

 

Oct 24th

                 Lift anchor for several days of drill at sea.

 

Oct 28th

                 Tie up in Yokosuka Harbor.

 

Oct 28th - Nov 5th

                 Ships work and occasional liberty in Yokosuka.

 

Nov 5th - 9th

                 Drills at sea. One mid air collision.

 

Nov 9th

                 Back to anchorage.

 

Nov 16th

                 Captain grow new Captain. Dispatch from C.T.F. "58" say probable date of relief arriving is Jan 20th. Too damn long.

 

Nov 24th

                 Out to sea for several days of drill.

 

Nov 27th

                 Back to Yokosuka. Exec. say dispatch has just been recieved saying Lex and Intrepid will be relieved in a few days. Stateside in Dec. Best news since V.J day.

 

Dec 1st

                 Loaded Army passengers.

 

Dec 3rd

                 Underway for the States with the Intrepid.

 

Dec 5th - 7th

                 Typhoon.

 

Dec 15th

                 Docked in States. First leave but no transportation.

 

Dec 17th

                 Left for home.

 

Jan 14th, 1946

                 Back aboard after a swell leave. Ship is anchored near Long Beach.

 

Jan 14th - Feb 14th

                 Taking it easy. Last month aboard ship.

 

 

Feb 15th

                 Leave ship for Terminal Island.

 

Feb 15th - 20th

                 At T.I. awaiting transportation to Great Lakes.

 

Feb 20th - 24th

                 So. Pacific R.R. though Ariz, New Mexico, Texas and then north.

 

Feb 24th

                 Arrive at Lakes and begin processing.

 

Feb 26th

                 Discharged.

 

Feb 1945

                 Very unusual. Ship is two years old today. She has steamed 146,000 miles, 18,000 landings abroad. Picked up a little more dope on the Lex life in Her 2 years. The distance traveled is equal to 6 times around the world. She has burned 27,000,000 gals. of fuel oil. Her planes have used 79,098 gals of gas. Her guns have destroyed 17 aircraft. Her planes have shot down 367 meatballs, she has been in 21 raids and covered 7 amphibious landings. Taken part in two navel actions against the Jap. Fleet. There are 610 men left of Her original crew. She has crossed the equator on 13 separate occasions, entered the realm of the Dragon 4 times. 

 

 


   
     
Copyright 1998 by Patty Cannon all rights reserved