USS PICKING WORLD WAR II LOG
December 31, 1944 Zone description (-) 9
Steaming as before enroute MANUS ISLAND to the assault of LUZON ISLAND, P.I. At 1120 P.C. 1418 reported sonar contact southwest of the Contact proved During the evening there were three reports by various ships of the screen all of which proved negative.
0800 - Latitude 03°-30.0 N; Longitude - 138°-39.0 E.
1200 - Latitude - 03°-47.0 N; Longitude - 138°-11.0 E.
2000 Latitude - 04°-09.0 N; Longitude - 137°-20.0 E.
January 1,1945 Zone description (-) 9
PICKING operating with the SEVENTH Fleet under Commander Task Force 79, Vice Admiral T. S. Wilkinson, USN, Commander Third Amphibious Force, Pacific Fleet in accordance with CANF, SWPA, operation plan 17-44. Assigned to Task Unit 79.11.3 in accordance with Commander Task Force 79 attack plan A305-44. Commander Task Unit 79.11.3 is Captain E. R. McLean, Sr., USN, Commander Destroyer Squadron 49, U.S.S. PICKING, flagship.
Proceeding in company with Task Group 79.5, Task Group 79.6 and Task Unit 79.11.3 (Tractor Group of T.F. 79) to the assault of LUZON ISLAND, P.I. In a special cruising disposition with guide and O.T.C. in PICKING. O.T.C. is C.T.U. 79.11.3
0800 - Latitude - 04°-51.0 N; Longitude - 136°-04.0 E
1200 - Latitude - 05°-07.0 N; Longitude - 135°-38.0 E.
2000 - Latitude - 05°-28.0 N; Longitude - 134°-30.0 E.
January 2, 1945 Zone description (-)9
Steaming enroute MANUS ISLAND to the assault of LUZON ISLAND, P.I. At 0700 made rendezvous with and assumed station 9 miles astern of Task Force 78. During the morning one unidentified aircraft was contacted bearing Oll° T., distance 44 miles. The remained in the area about 15 minutes, then opened range and faded.
0800 - Latitude - 06°-00 N; Longitude - 132°-49 E
1200 - Latitude - 05°-07 N; Longitude - 135°-38 E (error)
2000 - Latitude - 05°-28 N; Longitude - 134°-30 E (Error)
January 3, 1945 Zone description(-) 9
Steaming enroute MANUS ISLAND to the assault of LUZON ISLAND, P.I. During the morning, ships of the screen fueled from the tanker accompanying the disposition. At 0910 the O.T.C. ordered all ships of the disposition to general quarters in preparation for possible air attack by unidentified aircraft reported to be approaching the disposition. No enemy aircraft closed within visual range; at 0945 secured from general quarters and set the normal cruising condition of readiness.
0800 - Latitude - 08°-01 N; Longitude - 129°-37 E.
1200 - Latitude - 08°-14 N; Longitude - 129°-06 E.
2000 - Latitude - 08°-48 N; Longitude - 128°-12 E.
January 4, 1945 Zone description (-) 9
Steaming enroute MANUS ISLAND to the assault of LUZON ISLAND, P.I. During the afternoon there were several reports of unidentified aircraft contacts but no planes attacked or closed within visual range of the disposition. At 1800 formed a special cruising disposition for passing through SURIGAO STRAIT; the screening ships on each flank closed in to 1000 yards of the main body. At 2100 entered SURIGAO STRAIT between HOMONHON and DINAGAT ISLANDS.
0800 - Latitude - 09°-33.0 N; Longitude - 126°-54.0 E.
1200 - Latitude - 09°-47.0 N; Longitude - 126°-30.0 E.
2000 - Latitude - 10°-32.0 N; Longitude - 125°-51.0 E.
January 5, 1945 Zone description (-) 9
Steaming enroute MANUS ISLAND to the assault of LUZON ISLAND, P.I. During the morning passed from SURIGAO STRAIT into MINDINAO SEA. At various times during the day, unidentified aircraft contacts were reported by ships of the disposition but none closed within visual range.
0800 - Latitude - 09°-31.2 N; Longitude - 124°-42.5 E.
1200 - Latitude - 09°-19.0 N; Longitude - 124°-14.0 E.
2000 - Latitude - 08°-55.0 N; Longitude - 123°-10.0 E.
January 6, 1945 Zone description (-)9
Steaming enroute MANUS ISLAND to the assault of LUZON ISLAND, P.I. During the early morning passed from MINDINAO SEA into the SULU SEA. There were only two definitely unidentified aircraft contacts during the day. Once at sunrise which closed to 16 miles on bearing 353° T., and again at 0940 closing to 25 miles on bearing 205° T.
0800 - Latitude - 09°-29.0 N; Longitude - 122°-05.0 E.
1200 - Latitude - 09°-59.0 N; Longitude - 121°-5l.0 E.
2000 - Latitude - 10°-52.5 N; Longitude - 121°-37.0 E.
January 7, 1945 Zone description () 9
Steaming enroute MANUS ISLAND to the assault of LUZON ISLAND, P.I. During the morning ships of the screen fueled from tankers that joined the formation at daylight. There were no alerts during the day until about one hour before sunset at which time unidentified aircraft were reported approaching the disposition. This raid did not close within visual range. A half an hour later another raid was reported closing the disposition from the west. This raid, consisting of three TOJO type Japanese aircraft, was sighted at a distance of 3 miles, approaching from the sun. The planes closed the disposition to 1500 yards, then two of them banked sharply to the right and made dive bombing attacks on the landing craft group. The third plane turned left and attacked the ISHERWOOD in screening station #1, 7000 yards ahead of the guide. There was no damage to any ships. One plane was observed shot down over the landing craft group, the other two retired. PICKING did not fire as range was fouled when planes were seen. PICKING was stationed as guide in center-of disposition.
During early darkness, formed a cruising disposition for repelling surface attacks in which the destroyers present of DesDiv 97, under tactical command of CDS 49, took station 1500 yards broad on starboard bow of disposition center and the destroyers present of DesDiv 98, under tactical command of CDD 98, took similar station on the port side. At 2230 observed starshell illumination bearing 350° T., 3500 yards. During the period from 2230 to 2255, observed gun fire and occasional heavy explosions in the vicinity of the starshells. A few minutes after the firing ceased, a message was intercepted on the T B.S. to the effect that friendly forces had sunk a SHIGURE class Japanese destroyer in the vicinity of the previously observed firing.
0800 - Latitude - 12°-11.7 N; Longitude - 120°-56.2 E.
1200 - Latitude - 12°-42.8 N; Longitude - 120°-42.2 E.
2000 - Latitude - 13°-37.0 N; Longitude - 119°-45.0 E.
January 8, 1945 Zone description (-)9
Steaming enroute MANUS ISLAND to the assault of LUZON, P.I. One hour before sunrise the carriers accompanying TASK FORCE 78 launched the CAP. Soon after the carrier planes had been launched, unidentified aircraft were reported to the east; dog fights between friendly and enemy planes were observed in the direction of land bearing 030° T., 15 miles. Several enemy planes were reported destroyed. Two of the Japanese aircraft, possibly ZEKES, broke through and made bombing attacks on ships of the disposition ahead. One Japanese aircraft made a suicide crash into the CVE KADASHAN BAY, causing damage. The other plane, having released bombs, retired under heavy AA fire with no damage observed. There were no other attacks during the day although several unidentified aircraft were reported. One raid, after darkness, closed to within 8 miles of the disposition, then retired.
0800 - Latitude - 15°-02.0 N; Longitude - 119°-05.0 E.
1200 - Latitude - 15°-40.5 N; Longitude - 119°-08.5 E.
2000 - Latitude - 16°-40.0 N; Longitude - 119°-20.6 E.