Combat Loaded
Across the Pacific on the USS Tate
Military History - World War II
6 x 9, 256 pp.
33 b&w photos., 1 line art., 11 maps., 7 tables.
Pub Date: 12/01/2006
Williams-Ford Texas A&M University Military History Series
  cloth
Price:        $29.95

978-1-58544-556-1

Published by Texas A&M University Press
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Combat Loaded

Across the Pacific on the USS Tate

By Thomas E. Crew

The first authoritative history of any of the more than 350 attack transports or attack cargo ships of World War II, Combat Loaded: Across the Pacific on the USS Tate contains gripping combat narratives alongside the sometimes heartwarming, sometimes tragic details of daily life on board the ships of Transport Squadron 17 during the waning days of World War II.

Author Thomas E. Crew interviewed over fifty veterans of the Tate, including all her surviving officers. Crew weaves a rich tapestry of voices, combining it with extensive analysis of the Tate’s daily action reports and ship’s logs, accented by lively letters of the period from private collections—including previously unpublished accounts of the last days of famed war correspondent Ernie Pyle.

Crew also presents a rare unit-level perspective of joint operations involving the infantry fighting ashore and the navy transports that sustained them with their vital combat cargo. The resulting richly illustrated work presents perhaps the most comprehensive account to date of the experiences and courageous contributions of those who served on amphibious transports during World War II.

THOMAS E. CREW has worked for the Naval Oceanographic Office for almost twenty years. He lives in Long Beach, Mississippi. This is his first book.

What Readers Are Saying:

“With superb maps and photographs throughout the text, Combat Loaded is a fascinating read. It is a rare combination of a ship’s history, the recollections of her crew, and an analysis of the joint army-navy operations visible from her decks.” --The Journal of Military History

“…an interesting and welcome addition to the literature of the United States Navy during World War II in the Pacific. It is the personal interjections, along with the historical backdrop, and technical nature of the narrative that makes Combat Loaded such an enjoyable read for any audience.” --Nautical Research Journal

"What makes Combat Loaded successful is emphasis on context and the personal side of war, including reflections of the author's father, who served on the Tate. It contains ample detail for students of military history but tempers the technical with the range of human emotions, from tragedy and depression to humor and pride. And throughout, the narrative flows effectively and dramatically. The book is the first for Thomas E. Crew, longtime staff member of the National Oceanographic Office, but given his talent for weaving details of history with complexities of humanity, it should not be his last." --East Texas Historical Journal

“Each and every ship’s history adds another page and another dimension to our understanding of World War II and the America that fought it. Combat Loaded tells a story and preserves a little piece of history that might otherwise be lost, and which indeed would have been lost if not for the indefatigable efforts of Mr. Crew. These voices are among the last we shall hear of the World War II generation as they fade into history’s twilight.” --Mark P. Parillo, Kansas State University, author of The Japanese Merchant Mar

“. . . an important contribution to naval history. . . . The author also does a good job of weaving technical issues in with the letters of and post-war interviews with the crew of the United States Ship Tate. He is also able to place the story and history in the larger context of the Pacific Theater, which gets less attention than the war in Europe.” --Nick Sarantakes, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College–Ft. Gordon campu

“Combat Loaded: Across the Pacific on the USS Tate nicely fills this void in the history of the American navy’s Second World War amphibious operations…everything one would expect in a ship’s history…With superb maps and photographs throughout the text, Combat Loaded is a fascinating read. It is a rare combination of a ship’s history, the recollections of her crew, and an analysis of the joint army-navy operations visible from her decks.” --Military History

“It is a well-written and researched account of shipboard life during the naval operations of the Pacific campaign. More important, it is an excellent example of recent scholarship to collect and preserve the deeds of the World War II generation.” --United States Naval Institute

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