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John C. Butler Class Destroyer
USN October 1944
Following training exercises, departed on August 21 with a convoy that arrived at Eniwetok on August 30, then departed on September 2 for Pearl Harbor with anothar convoy returning on September 10.
After further training, the ship got underway on September 21 escorting another convoy to Eniwetoka and arriving on September 30. Afterwards, proceeded to Manus Island and joined Task Unit 77.4.3, "Taffy 3" and proceeded to the Leyte Gulf area and commenced operations with the Northern Air Support Group off Samar Island.
Racing into action, this destroyer reached 28.7 knots by diverting all available steam to the ship's twin turbines (although only designed to make 23-24 knots) and launched a daring torpedo attack against the Japanese cruisers, scoring a torpedo hit on one and at least 40 gunfire hits on a second before being hit by a salvo of 14" shells which tore a hole 40' long and 10' wide in the port side of her no. 2 engine room. Heavily damaged, the crew abandoned ship and the destroyer sank soon afterwards.
Samuel B. Roberts was included in the Presidential Unit Citation given to TU 77.4.3 "for extraordinary heroism in action" and earned one battle star for World War II service. Officially, struck from the Naval Vessel Register on November 27, 1944.
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