Subject: SS Russell H Chittenden,
Hello Cathy, Below is a message sent to my children a few months ago, just for family history. One of my sons found this web site (<<1202232554.htm>>) and ask me if I knew any of these people. I was on 6 different ships and so people and ships get mixed up. I did know a Charles Ebert from Alabama and I think it was on the Russell H Chittenden, I do remember Captain Cable.
Cathy my name is Thomas C Smith I live in Haw River, NC and now 84 years old.
Hope Freddie had a nice birthday and wish him many more, TC
An unforgettable experience in the life of TC
SS Russell H Chittenden, Ship I was on when it was lost.
This information came from web site below http://www.bbc.co.uk/ww2peopleswar/stories/97/a4495197.shtml
An American Liberty supply ship was reported to be in difficulties in a position which was given as south of New Britain. A search carried out there proved to be negative and the ship, the SS Russell H Chittenden, gave a position now 200 miles away and in urgent need of fresh water and medical supplies. On reaching the position we found that the ship had ran onto a reef (on 13 March 1945) and broken its back. The crew were on a nearby island which had fresh water, and the crew with an adequate supply of alcoholic drinks!! The crew were picked up and taken to New Guinea and the Parret returned to its base in the Admiralty Islands.
A Ship I was on when it was lost near New Guinea and I was on the Wheel at the time we ran onto the reef, It was a couple of minutes before the change of watch( appox. 3: 58 AM ) and my relief was there ready to take the wheel. We did not abandon the ship until after 8:00 AM and then went to a small island only a few miles away in the life boats. Some members of the crew went back to the ship and got some supples before the ship broke up. We were on the island a couple of days before we were found by a air craft. They dropped us a note saying they would send help, I did not remember the ship that picked us up until I found the above message on the Internet. It was an interesting couple of day and it was then I found out how much the training I received in the Boy Scouts would help me in real life. As for the adequate supply of alcoholic drinks, I did not know about that, the Captain must have been saving that for himself.
Thomas C Smith "TC"