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Hello, Charlie, March 2, 2010
I want to thank you for your letter and clip from “Jane’s Fighting Ships”. It was all very good, and I agree with it 100%, so I am curious why you sent it to me. The only thing wrong with it was the date “1959” in the Jane’s Clipping…It should be “1939”.
I assume your response to my story in the Hector Herald was because you thought I said the Hector WAS a “modified Liberty ship”, when I know it was NOT. I thought I had made that pretty clear.
Anyway, I have some information to share with you and so you can see where I got my root for my story.
If you examine the following pages, you will see what I am talking about. The first page is from the “Dictionary of American Fighting Ships” or DANFS, on the web. This has been there for quite a while and is the main basis for my story. If you also notice, there is a small bit about the information not being correct, and it was ME that got the writer of this article to put that on there.
The next page after the DANFS article is a page taken from a Hector Herald dated January 2000 and clearly shows the information about Hector is still being taken wrongly, and the next page is from yet another Hector Herald dated October 2003. So you should be able to see my point, and that is the guys who sailed on Hector are not getting it right.
Furthermore, there was a radio interview done a while back with Charlie Atkins and some other fellow and Charlie Atkins said several times that hector was a “modified Liberty ship” and he was probably reading it from these sources I have listed. This is the total reason for my story in the HH.
It is tough to keep the history of our ship straight if we don’t know it ourselves.
Now on to other business:
In World War II, the Liberty ship hull was configured to be an EC2-S-C1 hull. And according to your information there were NO “AR’s” built from Liberty Ships…Well, as a matter of fact, there were several.
USS Xanthus (AR-19)
HMS Assistance (F-173) ( Went to the Brits)
USS Diligence (AR-18)
USS Laertes (AR-20)
USS Dionysus (AR-21)
Furthermore, several Liberty ships were converted into other types of repair ships such as ARG’s, which were gasoline and Diesel engine repair ships. These included:
USS Luzon ARG-2)
USS Mindanao (ARG-3)
USS Tutuila (ARG-4 )
And on down to (ARG-17) USS Hooper Island
Then there were ARV’s which were Aircraft Repair ships.
So there WERE a lot of Liberty Ships converted to AR’s or some type of AR. USS Hector was NOT one of them.
LST’s were also converted to many forms of AR, most notably the ARB or “Battle Damage AR”. There were 13 of these.
I hope I helped you understand where I’m coming from, and I thank you again for your letter and clipping. I like hearing from former Hector shipmates. Maybe someday I can make it to a reunion.
USS HECTOR FOUNDRY
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