4 Replies Latest reply on Jul 5, 2018 11:18 AM by Rebecca Collier

    USS OKINAWA LPH3 -- dates of multiple fires that occurred onboard Oct. 1976 thru May 1977?

    William Parker Newbie

      I served on the USS OKINAWA LPH3 during WESPAC 1976 - 1977 and I am looking for the date of a multiple fire that occurred onboard between the months Oct. 1976 through May 1977.  This fire deeply impacted me and I can not recall the dates so I can focus on resolving issues that affect me and that has stopped my progress in therapy.

        • Re: USS OKINAWA LPH3 -- dates of multiple fires that occurred onboard Oct. 1976 thru May 1977?
          Jason Andrew Wayfarer

          While NARA or Navy staff could probably give you a better answer, this might be relevant to your inquiry. 

          ---

          Turning to the veteran's second reported stressor, a copy of

          the 1976 Command History Report for the USS Samuel Gompers

          (AD-37) was received in November 2007 from the Naval

          Historical Center, showing that, from 2215 on January 7,

          1976, to 0318 on January 8, 1976, crewmembers from the USS

          Samuel Gompers assisted in putting out a "large Class Alpha

          fire" onboard the USS Okinawa

          (LPH-3), which was moored across the pier. It was also noted

          that the ship's mess decks were opened for the feeding of all

          personnel of both ships involved in fighting the fire. With

          regard to this claimed stressor, it is clear that the

          occurrence of the fire onboard the USS Okinawa and the

          assistance of crewmembers of the USS Samuel Gompers in

          putting out the fire has been verified, and the veteran was

          onboard the Samuel Gompers at the time of that incident.

           

          However, as correctly reported by the AMC in its March 2008

          SSOC, the report which was furnished does not verify that any

          crewmembers of the Okinawa died as a result of the fire, or

          whether any crewmembers of the Gompers assisted with

          retrieving any bodies. Since prior diagnoses of PTSD have

          been based, in part, on the veteran's claim that he helped

          retrieve bodies after the fire onboard the USS Okinawa, an

          additional attempt to verify this claim should be made, to

          include requesting a copy of the deck log and/or command

          history of the USS Okinawa covering January 7-8, 1976....

          2. Contact the U.S. Army and Joint

          Services Records Research Center (JSRRC),

          or other appropriate agency, as deemed

          apprppriate, and seek to obtain specific

          details regarding the fire onboard the USS

          Okinawa (LPH-3), which occurred on the

          night of January 7-8, 1976. Specifically,

          request details regarding any casualties

          resulting from the fire, and the specific

          role that members of the USS Samuel

          Gompers (AD-37) played in assisting the

          USS Okinawa. (Previous research has

          produced records from the Gompers, but not

          the Okinawa.) Request that if no such

          records are available, the non-existence

          or unavailability of such records be

          certified.







          https://www.va.gov/vetapp08/files3/0822863.txt


          • Re: USS OKINAWA LPH3 -- dates of multiple fires that occurred onboard Oct. 1976 thru May 1977?
            Rebecca Collier Navigator

            Dear Mr. Parker,

             

            Thank you for posting your request on History Hub!

             

            We searched the Navy deck logs of the USS Okinawa (LPH-3) for October 1976 through May 1977 but were only able to locate indications of fire drills and casualty drills that took place during that time period. When Mr. Andrew provided the dates January 7-8, 1976, we searched through the deck logs again and located this account:

             

            7 January 1976

            22:20 Fire occurred in compartment 3-107-A and the Fire Party was called

            22:27 Assistance from the USS Samuel Gompers (AD-37)

            22:30 Assistance from the San Diego Base Fire Department

             

            8 January 1976

            00:00 Fire continued. All hands except Fire Party evacuated to USS Samuel Gompers (AD-37)

            03:01 Fire was out and overhaul commenced

            04:20 Fire boundary watches set. Continued de-smoking

            07:40 One sailor sent to hospital for smoke inhalation

             

            If you wish to have a copy of the deck log, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference via email at archives2reference@nara.gov.

             

            We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your research!

             

              • Re: USS OKINAWA LPH3 -- dates of multiple fires that occurred onboard Oct. 1976 thru May 1977?
                William Parker Newbie

                I would like to extend these dates from June 1976 to Sept 1977 as I do not recall being on board USS Okinawa LPH3 in January of 1976. I need a lot of help on this issue as I can not move forward due to the trauma of being locked down in the fog foam station while fighting the fire with no possibility of escape, had conditions escalated beyond what they already were.  All I remember was once they opened the hatch to release us from our own fire, a corpsman was asking if we could breath, nothing about if we were burnt so we were not evaluated of our injuries.

                  • Re: USS OKINAWA LPH3 -- dates of multiple fires that occurred onboard Oct. 1976 thru May 1977?
                    Rebecca Collier Navigator

                    Dear Mr. Parker,

                     

                    Thank you for posting your follow-up request on History Hub!

                     

                    We expanded our search of the Navy deck logs of the USS Okinawa (LPH-3) to include June 1976 through September 1976 and June 1977 through September 1977. We located a log for September 26, 1976 that indicated that a fire in the Paint Locker was discovered at 22:24 and resolved by 23:28; a log for August 11, 1977 that indicated that a fire in the Fire Room Compartment was discovered at 16:49 and resolved by 17:00; and a log for July 18, 1976 that indicated that the crew assisted the USS Blue Ridge with a fire from 20:00 to 21:50. Other than these incidents, the logs indicate various fire drills and casualty drills that took place from June 1976 to September 1977.

                     

                    If you wish to have a copy of the deck logs, please contact the National Archives at College Park - Textual Reference via email at archives2reference@nara.gov.

                     

                    We hope this is helpful. Best of luck with your research!

                     

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