US NAVY PAGES
Massachusetts (BB-59) refueling from
the Saugatuck (AO-75)
POSTED FOR BOBC 59
Massachusetts (BB-59) refueling from the Saugatuck (AO-75) on 20 April 1945, taken by the Hornet (CV-12).
The importance of fleet oilers to the success of U.S. Naval operations in WWII is unquestionable.
They were the most valuable auxiliaries in the Navy, especially in the Pacific, where their presence facilitated the
wide-ranging carriers operations and amphibious assaults conducted thousands of miles from the nearest naval base.
Probably no other surface ship contributed so much to the successful conclusion of the war with Japan.
During one three-week period in April 1945, Task Force 58, then engaged in operations preceding the
invasion of Okinawa, required the services of no less than thirty fleet oilers to provide refueling at sea.
The fuel required for the Okinawa operation far exceeded that consumed during any previous campaign
with total deliveries to the carrier task force averaging 385,000 gallons of gasoline daily.
USN photo & text courtesy of Pieter