In March 1944, Class 6A was in training at Fort PierceFlorida. When the program was through, this
unit was divided into teams EIGHT, NINE, and TEN. With Lieutenant Commander McADAMS
as Commanding Officer and Lieutenant H.F. BROOKS as Executive Officer, newly
commissioned Team TEN left for San Francisco on 2 June. Boarding the U.S.S. MONTEREY, the outfit reached MAUI, T.H. on the 19th of the month. There
it was joined by twenty-one men and five officers from the office of Strategic
Services, headed by Lieutenant A.O. CHOATE, Jr. As all of these men had
undergone special underwater swimming and explosive training, they were to be
worked into the backbone of the team. When Lieutenant Commander McADAMS left
the team for duty elsewhere, Lieutenant CHOATE became the Commanding Officer
and Lieutenant James KNOTT became his Executive Officer.
With the MAUI stage of the training complete, the team
embarked upon the U.S.S. RATHBURNE, an APT, on 18 August, and arrived at
Guadalcanal Island off Cape Esperance, where it took part in rehearsal
maneuvers for the coming operations against the Caroline Islands. Under Rear Admiral KINGMAN,
Teams EIGHT and TEN formed the Demolition Unit assigned to make a
reconnaissance of Anguar on 14 September.
Under cover of a bombardment from the fire-support ship,
the team embarked in PRs approximately 3000 yards seaward of BlueBeach. Swimmers dropped in the water about
300 yards off shore, were handicapped by strong currents off the southern part
of the beach, but all were recovered with no casualties. Scattered sniper fire
was encountered. A report of the recon-naissance, showing that no demolition
work was necessary was dispatched to Admiral KINGMAN. On 15 September a similar
operation on RedBeach revealed no signs of underwater
obstacles. The next day, however, while further current observations were being
made of both of these beaches, activity was noted on them. Further
investigation showed that barbed wire and jetted rails had been erected.
The following morning two platoons, equipped for demolition work,
reported to the beachmaster of BlueBeach. At first the men were delegated to
guide in the assault waves, but about 1000 a mine was located, so the platoons
were sent to search for more mines. In all, eight mines wee found moored about
300 yards from shore from five to ten feet under the surface. Four of them were
buoyed, but as the team had no equipment for cutting them loose, no attempt was
made to destroy them. In the afternoon, coral heads and limestone ledges were
demolished and a channel cleared for landing craft on the southern extremity of
On 19 September, orders were received to join the ULITIHI
Fire-Support Group operating under the command of Rear Admiral Hayler.
Arriving there two days later, the mission of Team TEN was to accomplish
prior to Jig Day, 23 September, the clearance of mines and obstacles on five
beaches, each on a different island:On
the morning of the 21st, under cover of Naval Bombardment, the team carried out
a reconnaissance of two of the beaches, discovering that no demolition work was
necessary. At the team proceeded similarly on the remaining three
beaches. On one of these, RedBeach, it was deemed expedient to blow two
channels in the coral fringe to permit access to the beach at low tide. This
operation was completed at 1600. On the following morning, buoys were placed to
mark the best approaches to all beaches. That afternoon, the two channels into RedBeach were completely and properly buoyed.
During the next three days, the team assisted the Beachmaster and Boat Control
Officer with landing operations.
Leaving ULITHI on 25 September, the RATHBURNE transported
the team to the Admiralties for rest. Some two weeks later, as part of the
Beach Demolition Group under Rear Admiral OLDENDORP, the RATHBURNE departed for
LEYTE GULF, reaching its destination on 18 October. Because of a delay in
minesweeping operations, caused by a typhoon, the team was a day late in
reaching SanPedroBay, its assigned beach area. When the reconnaissance was conducted,
however, swimmers were dropped about 400 yards off shore. Through-out the
operation both swimmers and PRs, especially on the southern portion of the
beach, drew heavy fire from shore, consisting principally of mortar and machine
guns. Complete observation, which showed the beach to be clear of all
obstacles, was nevertheless, accomplished. The next day, Team TEN was allowed
to go ashore where it witnessed General MacArthur come ashore to view his
troops as they plunged inland.
Leaving the following morning for the
Admiralties, the ship stayed there just long enough to refuel before pushing
onto FloridaIsland, Guadalcanal where the team remained a week previous to sailing to Noumea, New Caledonia on 8 November. Here the team enjoyed a
pleasant two weeks rest. The Officer in Charge of the Receiving Station where
the team was billeted, was very helpful in organizing
swimming and recreational parties with beer and food for all.
Next came a one-day stop at Finehaven, New Guinea, after which the team
proceeded to Hollandia where it spent Christmas Eve, helping a great deal to
make that as pleasant a holiday as possible.
30 December found the RATHBURNE, with the team once more aboard, off
Kossol Passage. On 3 January 1945, LeyteIsland was reached. Once again, under Rear
Admiral OLENDORF's Fire-Support Group, the ship arrived off the entrance to LINGAYEN GULF on the morning of 6 January, Team TEN prepared to carry out its
reconnaissance of BlueBeach on the following morning, but because
of turbid water and heavy swells, the operation was postponed until the
Although scattered mortar fire was
reported from time to time, the reconnaissance was completed without casualty.
On 9 January all the information gathered on BlueBeach was turned over to the Beachmaster and
Beach Control Officer.
Two days later, the RATHBURNE left of LEYTE GULF, at which place the team rested before
departing for Subic Bay just north of Manila on 25 January. Here the operation plan called for
a night reconnaissance of surf conditions on RedBeach. Arriving at the destination
approximately four miles seaward of the beach at 0245, navigation was checked
and a true compass course to the beach was determined. The radar screen
indicated a large object offshore about one-half mile south of the beach. At
the time it was suspected that this was an enemy barge or patrol boat, but it
later turned out to be a beached freighter. At 0300 four officers and eight men
left the APD to conduct the reconnaissance. The sea was calm with an offshore
breeze of about three knots, and a full moon made for good visibility. The
operation was carried out without incident.
The following day upon reporting to the
Beachmaster, the team was assigned to survey the beach front for suitable
landing places for LSTs. This proved to be a difficult task as a sandbar ran
along most of the beach at a distance of 100 yards with a water depth varying
from six to twelve feet. Some channels were found on part of Red Beach,
however, and one excellent beaching area was discovered in Capone Cove about
three miles south of the beach.
Departing from Subic Bay, proceeding via LEYTE GULF and ULITHI, the RATHBURNE disembarked
the team on Guam in the last week of February. Here with Team EIGHT, it erected a small
Demolition Base. On 5 May Team TEN left for the MAUI Base, at which it arrived on the 16th.
Soon orders were received to proceed with Teams NINE,
FOURTEEN, and FIFTEEN to the UNITED STATES. Upon arrival here, all team
personnel were granted delay enroute to Fort Pierce, Florida until 1 July.
After re-assembling at Fort Pierce, there were several changes in
personnel; the Coast Guard men being transferred to separation centers in
September and the Marines to Great Lakes, Illinois. Lieutenant Commander CHOATE,
Lieutenants HANSKA, SPEAKS, and GOWERS, Ensign GARRETT were transferred to home
naval districts. Lieutenant (jg) DOUGHERTY became Commanding Officer and Ensign
MORAN, Executive Officer. All men eligible for discharge were transferred to
separation centers and replacements received. The team remained at Fort Pierce helping to tear down buildings, until 2 February 1946, when it was decommissioned.
(compiled by Robert Allan
King for the UDT-SEALMuseum from public records at the Operational Archives of
TEAM ROSTERS - To
protect the integrity of the Teams and the privacy of individual frogmen, Team
rosters are not made public. If you or your relative was a member of UDT Team
Ten and you would like further information, we suggest you contact the UDT-SEAL Museum.