Fiske and
USS Douglas L. Howard DE 138
searching for U-804
shortly before she was torpedoed


U-804 torpedo strikes
Fiske amidship

USS Fiske DE 143 sinking
Her Final Moments
Fiske stern up

click photos for a larger view

USS Fiske DE 143

DE 143 was sunk 2 August 1944 by German Submarine U-804 north of the Azores.
33 men were lost.  Her survivors were rescued by USS Farquhar DE 139.

Below, read a note from a crewmember verifying the death toll.

On 2 August, during a special hunt for submarines known to be tranmitting weather information from stations in the central Atlantic, Fiske and Douglas L. Howard DE 138 were detached from the task group to investigate a visual contact both had made.  The contact, surfaced U-804, quickly dived, but the two escorts picked it up on sonar and began their attack approach.  Suddenly, Fiske was torpedoed on her starboard side amidship and within 10 minutes she broke in two and had to be abandoned. (DANFS, Vol II, 1969, p. 408)

Gone But Never Forgotten

Herbert Alston StM 1/C
Theadore Askew StM 1/C
Jack L. Best S 2/C
George T. Bradshaw S 2/C
David Busto F 2/C
Edward Campillo TM 3/C
Julian J. Commons QM 2/C
William L. Dickinson Lt.(jg)
Marvin H. Driskell TM 2/C
Robert L. Earnest S 2/C
Bertram M. Engleman CRM
Kenneth W. Eshleman Y 3/C
William G. Essex FC 2/C
Harold E. Garner EM 2/C
Lupe Higareda S 2/C
Carroll A. Hudson MoMM 2/C
Judson L. Knecht MoMM 1/C
Chauncey W. Leppia F 1/C
Harding W. Martinson MoMM 1/C
Harry J. Parker S 1/C
Robert G. Pumphrey CMOMM
Walter A. Ribbentrop MoMM 3/C
Frank Rozman MoMM 3/C
Edward Rutko F 1/C
Harold W. Shaw MoMM 2/C
William M. Snyder CEM
Huston G. Sutton MoMM 3/C
Lawrence R. Utz S 1/C
Charles Vasslowski MoMM 1/C
Warren C. Walden F 1/C

Alfred L. Wheeler F 2/C
Junior H. Yates S 1/C
Melvin H. Zastrow MoMM 3/C

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The following letter was received by DESA:

November 17, 2003

In the Sept/Oct 2003 issue of DESANews you published the Roll of Honor.  I noticed there were only 31 names for the USS FISKE DE 143.  I went to the 8/2/44 muster list of the crew, the day our ship was lost, and found we lost 32 enlisted men and 1 officer for a total of 33, that coincides with the number that I recall.  I compared the list in DESANews with the muster list prepared on the USS FARQUHAR DE 139, our rescue ship, the day of our rescue and found Warren Walden F1/c and Charles Vasslowski Momm1/c were lost with our ship that day.  I am enclosing a copy of a page from the muster roll prepared 8/2/44 as proof of this claim.

Sincerely,
Robert R. White, USS FISKE DE 143

Mr. White included information from the National Archives.  Part of that information shows:

Killed

Wounded

Not Wounded

Compliment
on 8/2/44

Officers

1

1

10

12

Enlisted

32

64

106

202

Total

33

65

116

214

Four bodies were rescued by USS FARQUHAR.  Two of the 171 enlisted men rescued by that vessel died on board of wounds, so there remained 180 survivors (11 officers; 169 enlisted; plus Caltabiano, P.A.

Caltabiano, P. A., S2/c, was actually aboard USS FARQUHAR DE 139 on 8/2/44. He had been transferred to that vessel on 7/30/44 for medical treatment, so he was not one of the 171 enlisted survivors rescued by Fraquhar on 8/2/44.


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