Lt. (JG) Stanley Yokell, Subic Bay December 1944
I was LST 722's first engineering officer, serving with Captain V. M.Mechant, Jr., a mustang and former (and later after the war) a Chief Quartermaster. My fellow officers were Ens William Fox Jr., our first First Lieutenant, Ens. H. Keith (Hank) Owens, Gunnery Officer, Ens. R. Stuart Goodwin, Communications Officer, Ens. Vincent G. Doyle, Supply Officer, Ens. Joseph S. Altman, Supernumerary Officer who later swapped positions with Bill Fox Jr., Ens. Wilhart, M.Ranta, Supernumerary Officer, who took on the job of navigator along with Captain Merchant. We had several different Executive Officers who were Lts. (JG). Each time one left for one reason or another, I became the acting Exec. Later we got an Exec and another Supernumerary from an LST that had broached in the Halmeharas. Exec's surname Kruger and Supernumerary surname was BenRubi. I don't remember their first names. Kruger and the captain did not get along and he and BenRubi transferred out. I became and remained the Executive Officer and Chief Engineer until I was relieved by a young Ensign from Montana in Tokyo Bay after our third trip from Subic Bay to Japan. I was a Lt.(JG) at that time.
After the war had ended two other officers joined our ship in Subic Bay just after the war ended, Ens. Severo Italo DeStefano and Ens. Manuel Pinero.
Our first Chief Boatswain's Mate was Percy Brinkley, who would have been retired if the war hadn't come along.
Other enlisted men whom I remember fondly were Harry Woods, MM1C and later Chief MM from Scotts Bluff, Nebraska, EM1C and later Chief EM. Rene L. Jean, and F1C Julian James Govek and the rest of the black gang who were good sound people with whom I am proud to have served.
I have a substantial number of pictures that were taken before we unloaded the LCT that we and the crane with which we crossed the Pacific and a picture of the ship taken at the same time. I would be happy to share these pictures with anyone who would like to see them.
I haven't seen any of my fellow officers since Bill Fox Jr. and his new bride stopped to visit on their way back from their honeymoon in the summer of 1948. He had studied chemical engineering but became a minister. Go Figure. I also had a visit from Manny Pinero, Vincent Doyle and Joe Altman in about 1954 and saw Vincent a few times before that in 1946. Later, I visited a few times with Hank Owens in Pittsburgh where I had traveled for work. Much later, when I was in my mid 60s I visited with Clyde Mabin in Red Wing, Minnesota during a solo bike ride from Duluth, MN to Texarkana, TX. (I became an avid cyclist and have ridden more than 49,000 miles mostly solo, including a coast to coast trip. In addition I became addicted to scuba diving and have made more th 600 dives around the world since 1964, having first gone under water on the end of a hose with air from our clutch air compressors and a cobbled together face mask to change screws that we bent on a landing at Lingayen Gulf in the Philippines.)
As I approach my 84th birthday, I am still working full time as an engineering consultant but am considering retiring to spend mor time with my wife of 61 years.
I would love to hear from any of my former shipmates who are still alive and swap tales.
Thanks for your quick reply. Attached is a small selection of photos, scanned from some taken in November 1944. There are several more in my files including one of most of the original crew. As time permits, I will scan that one in and forward it to you. Of some interest is that one of the members of the MGT Consulting Network is Carl F. Andreone, P.E., Fellow of the ASME, who was an LCVP coxswain in Subic Bay at the same time our ship was based there.
For my children and grandchildren’s interest, I have written what I call an autobiographical novel. The chapters that seem to interest my family most are those that describe events during my service in the navy. During WWII my older brother volunteered for the infantry despite having two children that guaranteed him a draft deferment. Later my younger brother flew an F4F Jet in the navy, a nephew served two tours as a helicopter crew chief in Viet Nam and his son is now serving in the army in Iraq. You would think that in all these years we could learn how to avoid such conflicts, but I guess it will never be and we have to fulfill our duty to serve.
Stanley Yokell, P.E., Fellow of the ASME
4390 Caddo Parkway
Boulder, CO 80303-3607
Tel 303 494 2242 home
Tel 303 494 9608 office
Fri Oct 12 2012
USS LST 722
Here is a graphic showing my term as uss lst 722's first engineering officer and its third executive officer.
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