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USS CIMARRON (AO-22) Class leader fleet replenishment oiler in service 1939 to 1968.


The (30) Cimarron-class oilers were an underway replenishment class of oil tankers which were first built in 1939 as "National Defense Tankers," United States Maritime Commission Type T3-S2-A1, designed "to conform to the approved characteristics for naval auxiliaries in speed, radius and structural strength", anticipating their militarization in the event of war. "Tentative plans had been reached with the Standard Oil Company of New Jersey to build ten high-speed tankers with the government paying the cost of the larger engines needed for increased speed. By the first week in December [1937], Standard Oil had solicited and received bids from a number of yards providing for the construction of a number of 16,300-ton (deadweight) capacity tankers.


Four more Cimaron class hulls were converted to Sangamon class (CVE) escort carriers in 1942


USS CIMARON received 10 battle stars for World War II service, 7 battle stars for Korean War service, 4 campaign stars for Vietnam War service


Photo from navsource: Starboard bow plan view looking aft of USS Cimarron (AO-22) at Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, CA., 26 November 1942, after taking part in the Tokyo Raid with the USS Hornet (CV-8) and USS Enterprise (CV-6) in April and the Battle of the Coral Sea in early May with USS Lexington (CV-2), USS Yorktown (CV-5), Hornet and Enterprise, to defeat the Japanese at Midway at the end of May-early June, and finally, taking part in operations in the Solomon Islands and Guadalcanal. Cimarron is still in splotches. The excessive fading of the seablue (5-S) is evident on the hull. The small dark patches are primer coats of 84D. Hulls always took more of a beating because they could not be “kept up” underway, whereas decks and superstructures were often touched up and maintained. The bright sun tends to wash out the 5-O and 5-H side splotches on the bridge. The circles indicate new equipment or structures added at that time and are actually drawn on the original negatives. The Farragut class destroyers USS Worden (DD-352) and USS Dewey (DD-349) in the background, on the opposite side of the pier, across for Worden, are both in Measure 21, navy blue (5-N). The stern of the heavy cruiser USS Chicago (CA-29) is visible just forward of USS Worden. Across the river at Mare Island Naval Station, in the ferry slip, is either the harbor ferry Delta King (YFB-55) or Delta Queen (YFB-56).

US Navy photo

AO 22 USS CIMARRON 001.jpg

AO 22 USS CIMARRON 008a.jpg

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  • 2 months later...

Another Vietnam War gasoline tanker


USS NOXUBEE (AOG-56) Patapsco class gasoline tanker in service 1945 to 1975. She was our SERVRON FIVE tanker specifically upgraded in 1965 to serve the Salvage forces and Brown Water Navy bases in RVN (like the PATAPSCO in post no. 75)


On 10 September 1966, following a seven-month outfitting and modernization period at Baltimore, Noxubee was recommissioned at Norfolk Naval Shipyard, LT Howard Pabst commanding. One month later she sailed for Pearl Harbor, Hawaii via the Panama Canal as a unit of Service Squadron Five.
Following refresher training at Pearl Harbor, Noxubee deployed to the western Pacific on 9 March 1967. During that deployment she supported advanced fuel bases along the coast of I Corps, South Vietnam. On 2 August 1967, Noxubee departed Da Nang for Sasebo and Yokosuka, Japan. During her return trip to Pearl Harbor Noxubee was diverted to Wake Island to assist in the salvage of a grounded civilian tanker. She finally arrived at Pearl Harbor on 22 September 1967. While conducting a training cruise off the coast of Oahu on 24 November, Noxubee spotted and rescued the sole survivor of a fishing boat accident.
On 17 April 1968, Noxubee departed Hawaii for her second WESTPAC cruise. Noxubee headed directly for Vietnam for three months of continuous operations. In August Noxubee received the Battle Efficiency Pennant for fiscal year 1968. On 28 October, Noxubee came under enemy artillery fire while anchored off Cửa Việt, escaping unharmed. During this deployment Noxubee set the all-time record for AOGs by pumping 20 million gallons of petroleum products and earning a Meritorious Unit Commendation. Noxubee returned to Pearl Harbor in December 1968.
Following six months of upkeep and training Noxubee again departed Pearl Harbor for Vietnam on 2 June 1969 with LT D. E. Cass commanding. Operating out of Da Nang, she made frequent trips to Sa Huynh, Tan My and Cửa Việt. On 9 September 1969 Noxubee was mined by enemy swimmers while anchored at Cửa Việt. The explosion created a three by five-foot hole in her hull but the crew suffered no casualties. Temporary repairs were quickly accomplished at Da Nang and she was back on station in less than a week. At the end of the month Noxubee traveled to Subic Bay for permanent repairs. In addition to Subic Bay, Noxubee also visited Hong Kong and Sasebo, Japan during this deployment. She returned to Pearl Harbor on 6 February 1970.
NOXUBEE was awarded six campaign stars for Vietnam War service



AOG 56 USS NOXUBEE 001.jpg

AOG 56 USS NOXUBEE 002.jpg

AOG 56 USS NOXUBEE 003.jpg

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  • 5 months later...

USS NAVASOTA (AO-106) Cimarron/Ashtabula class fleet oiler in service 1946 to 1975, USNS service 1975 to 1991 as (T-AO-106);  She went through 'Jumboization' in 1963-1964 to increase her length from 553' to 644'


Two different patches from her USN Pacific Fleet service career, a 1950's Japanese patch (pre-Jumboized) and a US Gemsco patch made after her Jumboization.


USS NAVASOTA earned nine battle stars for Korean War service and fourteen campaign stars for Vietnam War service


AO 106 USS NAVASOTA 001.jpg


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AO 106 USS NAVASOTA 005.jpg


AO 106 USS NAVASOTA 006.jpg



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