ALL WORDS ARE IN FIRST PERSON, BEING WRITTEN AS THE AUTHOR WROTE.
No names of the crew are written except the 5 officers. The author is "YN2"
Late in the evening of Wednesday 5 April we approached Portland Head Light and signaled for berthing instructions. As we neared Portland, we passed through the entrance of an anti-submarine net, guarded by two courious looking vessels called net tenders. Finally we docked at a pier just a short distance from downtown Portland. The variation in tide here is ten to fifteen feet or even more, which means constantly adjusting the mooring lines as the water rises and falls all day and all night.
Our assignment in Portland was towing targets.
Each FORT, NET or MINE has a link behind it.
The Rescue Tug needed to pick up and leave off its' target at the NAVY base on Long Island.
The assignment at Portland lasted about a month. In that time I had a chance to go back home and visit one day and return to Portland next day, Sunday. I had already bought a round trip coach fare on a local train, but at North Station, I ran into Lieutenant Scott, the Executive Officer and he said to get another ticket and come along with on the "Flying Yankee". This was my first ride on a streamline train and we rode express from Boston to Portland, saving a couple of hours over the regular local train.
One other incident comes to mind in Casco Bay. One morning when we were underway with a target, a little island ferry came up on our starboard side and without warning crossed our bow. Although there was room to spare, it was a foolish maneuver and the Captain fired off an obscene reply to the skipper of the little island ferry. It certainly made a dozen or so passengers on the ferry wince as they sailed by.
Before leaving Maine, I must mention having trouble with a bad tooth. My gum was swollen, and Doc Jackson sent me over to the Navy Dispensary at Portland. The dentist had a look and said the tooth must come out. So next thing I knew, I was minus one large back tooth. He was the same dentist that had checked me over at boot camp in Newprt, Rhode Island. He lived in Maine and said he had a chance to pick an assignment there.
Another memory of Maine was a big supply ship the USS DENABOLA AD-12 that was anchored off Portland. It was here that most orders originated and our Captain had to make a couple trips by launch to report to SOPA. (Senior Officer Present Afloat)
In the late afternoon of Sunday 7 May 1944, we got underway for Boston, Massachusetts with a target raft in tow. We ran into thick patches of fog and had to slow down and keep the fog signal in constant operation. It was not until early evening of Monday 8 May that we finally delivered our tow to the Boston Navy Drydock, South Boston, Massachusetts. After a short stop in Boston, we were underway again for Portland, Maine. We sighted a submarine on the way which was identified as friendly.
Finally it was time for us to leave Portland. We had orders to sail to Norfolk for further assignment.
On 21 august 1945 the ATR-7 cast of lines at Key West, Florida with orders to proceed to Casco Bay, Maine. Noon on 25 August, the ATR-7 entered the Cape Cod Canal. At 1940 that evening thre ship moored at berth Fox, Long Island, Casco Bay, Maine.
At this point several crew members were given leave, a few were transferred to Separation Centers and others sent to new assignments. On 6 September the ATR-7 towed target for the USS AUGUSTA CA-31. Another target towing assignment came along on 12 October and again between 16 and 20 October. During this time the ship ran into some patches of fog off the coast of Maine while in the firing area. Again the ATR-7 got underway 14 November to calibrate compasses and later moored at the Navy Supply Pier starboard side to the USS ATA-173.
In accordance with a secret despatch the ATR-7 got underway at 2100 on 21 November to proceed to Bar Harbor, Maine.
The special underwater search operations continued until 10 December 1945. At 0111 that day the ship got underway on orders to proceed to Portland, Maine. Once again the ATR-7 moored at pier Fox, Long Island, Casco Bay, Maine and took on fuel. Boatswain, J.O. Jenkins was detached at this date.
Under Comserlant orders the ATR-7 got underway at 0500 on 8 January 1946 en route from Portland, Maine to Halifax, Nova Scotia.
FOR SOUTH ATLANTIC SERVICE; TO END OF WAR!