Stuff You Should Know
The USS Appanoose (AK-226) was a Crater-class cargo ship in the service of the US Navy during World War II, named after the Appanoose County, Iowa. It was originally laid down under a MARCOM contract by Bethlehem Fairfield Shipyard in June 1944 and acquired by the Navy in August. It was renamed and commissioned under Lieutenant Commander Volmer H. S. G. Holm’s command. The ship began its service in October 1944 and sailed for the Philippines. After making its way towards Leyte Islands, the ship anchored in Samar and, despite several torpedo attacks, managed to successfully assemble the pontoons and moved to Tacloban, in January 1945. After a brief trip to the West Coast, the Appanoose reached Okinawa with cargo where it remained for 3 months. The vessel was targeted by multiple Japanese air attacks and claimed to have shot down one Japanese bomber and helped destroy four more. It was decommissioned at Norfolk, Virginia in October 1945 and returned to the WSA. The Appanoose received one battle star for the service brought to the country during the war.