USS McGOWAN DD-678



CLASS - FLETCHER As Built.
Displacement 2924 Tons (Full), Dimensions, 376' 5"(oa) x 39' 7" x 13' 9" (Max)
Armament 5 x 5"/38AA, 4 x 1.1" AA, 4 x 20mm AA, 10 x 21" tt.(2x5).
Machinery, 60,000 SHP; General Electric Geared Turbines, 2 screws
Speed, 38 Knots, Range 6500 NM@ 15 Knots, Crew 273.
Operational and Building Data
Laid down by Federal Shipbuilding, Kearny NJ. June 30 1943.
Launched November 14 1943 and commissioned December 20 1943.
Decommissioned April 30 1946, recommissioned July 6 1951.
Decommissioned November 30 1960.
Loaned to Spainish Navy November 30 1960.
renamed Jorge Juan (hull# 45, then reclassified as D 25).
Stricken from US Navy October 1 1972
DD-678 McGowan's Fate
Stricken from the Spanish Navy list on
15 November 1988
Scrapped.
DD-678 McGowan named for
Rear Admiral Samuel McGowan
Born at Laurens, S.C., 1 September 1870.
Commissioned assistant paymaster 15 March 1894.
On 1 July 1914 he was appointed Paymaster General and
Chief of the Bureau of Supplies and Accounts
with the rank of Rear Admiral.
Holding that office until his retirement in 1920,
he was awarded the
Distinguished Service Medal
for the preparation and execution of plans to maintain the fleets during World War I.
He died 11 November 1934 at Laurens, S.C.

SERVICE HISTORY

USS McGowan (DD-678) was laid down 30 June 1943 by the Federal Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Co., Kearny, N.J. launched 14 November 1943, sponsored by Mrs. Rose McGowan Cantey, sister of Rear Admiral McGowan, and commissioned 20 December 1943, Comdr. James B. Weller in command.

Post shakedown training completed in time to participate in the Marianas campaign, McGowan arrived at Roi, Kwajalein Atoll, 31 May 1944. Ten days later she sailed with TG 52.17 for Saipan. On 14 June she screened the bombardment ships. The next day, during the invasion she added fire support to her duties, disposing of a fuel dump and artillery emplacements endangering forces on the beach. As the beachhead expanded, McGowan continued to support the assault forces with counter battery and harassing fire until the 23d, when she retired to Eniwetok. Next assigned to TG 53.1 she screened the transports carrying troops to Guam, remained through the initial landing operations, and then set course back to Saipan. There she rejoined TG 52.17 for screening and fire support missions during the Tinian phase of the conquest of the Marianas.

At the end of July McGowan sailed to Guadalcanal to prepare for the amphibious assault on the Palaus. Her TG 32.2, sortied 8 September, arriving in the transport area east of the Palaus on the 15th. McGowan remained in that area until the 17th when, with her transport group she moved toward Angaur Island. There she took position in the antisubmarine screen, remaining through the 22d.

The destroyer then cruised south to Manus, the staging area for the upcoming Leyte operation. On 11 October she got underway, screening LSTs and LCIs of the 7th Fleet to Leyte. During the assault on Dulag, 20 October she served as fighter-director for aircraft covering the landings. In the early hours of the 25th she participated in DesRon 54's torpedo attack on Japanese men-of-war, weakening them as they steamed Up Surigao Strait into defeat at the hands of Rear Admiral Oldendorf and his battleline.

Within 48 hours McGowan was underway for Hollandia, from where she screened convoys to the Philippines until after the Mindoro landings in December. She sailed into Lingayen Gulf, 11 January 1945, to take part in the Luzon offensive. As part of the antiaircraft screen off the San Fabian beachhead, she warded off the suicide planes of the Japanese Special Attack Corps until the 14th, when she returned to escort work.

At the end of the month she joined the fast carriers, TF 58, getting underway with them 8 February. Speeding north, they struck; at Honshu in mid-February. Next, setting a southerly course, they supported the Iwo Jima campaign and then, in March returned to the Japanese home islands for further strikes. Throughout April and May they provided support for the troops fighting on Okinawa as they struck at enemy military and industrial targets from Formosa to Kyushu. Replenishing in the Philippines in early June, they extended their range northward again and by 1 July were headed for objectives on Honshu, Hokkaido and the Kuriles

Following the strikes on the Kuriles, McGowan was detached from T F. 38 and ordered back to the west coast for overhaul. While at Adak, 14 August, she received word of the Japanese surrender. Assigned to the 9th Fleet she steamed back to Japan for occupation duty in the Ominato Naval Base area. On 12 October she departed Honshu for the United States. Arriving in November she underwent overhaul, and on 30 April 1946 she decommissioned and entered the San Diego Group, Pacific Reserve

Less than 6 years later the outbreak of hostilities in Korea required an expansion of the active fleet. McGowan recommissioned 6 July 1951 and by 1952 had transited the Panama Canal and reported for duty in the Atlantic Fleet. By May she was involved in training for Far Eastern deployment. She departed Newport a September and arrived at Yokosaka 20 October. On 17 November, following operations with TF 96 off Okinawa, McGowan rendezvoused with TF 77 in the combat area. As a unit of the U.N. Naval Force she cruised along the Korean east coast providing close fire support for U.N. troops and periodically took station off Wonsan to bombard. Upon leaving the battle area she called at Buckner and Subic Bays, Singapore, Calcutta, Aden, Suez, and Gibraltar, arriving Newport 11 April 1953.

Home ported there. McGowan operated on the eastern seaboard, deploying annually to the Mediterranean, for the next 7 years. During her 1956-58 oversee deployments she was involved in peace keeping operations in the volatile eastern Mediterranean. In the spring of 1956 she cruised in the Red Sea area and then the Port Said area as British troops withdrew from the Suez Canal zone, returning to Newport before nationalization of the canal. Subsequent events led, in the fall, to the brief war between British, French, Israeli, and Egyptian forces. Tension remained high and in May 1957 McGowan was back in the Mediterranean. On the 22d, she, with three other ships of DesDiv 202, became the first warships to transit the Suez Canal since its reopening to maximum draft ships (9 April 1957). She then cruised in the Red Sea and the Persian Gulf to insure safe passage of American merchant shipping to Israel and Jordan.

By late spring of 1958, as McGowan again returned to the eastern Mediterranean, Jordan and Lebanon were threatened with coups d'etat in the continued struggle for leadership of the Arab world. In July, President Chamoun of Lebanon requested the aid of the United States in insuring the stability of his government, while Jordan made a similar request to Britain. On the 15th, the 6th Fleet stood off the Lebanese coast while landing the marines. On the 16th, McGowan arrived from another tense area, Cyprus. She remained at Beirut through the 20th, then got underway to take a patrol station off the coast, remaining until 1 August. She resumed operations to the north, and in September departed for Newport. arriving on the 30th.

In October of 1960 McGowan was designated for transfer to the Government of Spain on a renewable 5-year loan under the terms of the Military Assistance Program. On 30 November 1960, at Barcelona, McGowan decommissioned and the following day became the Jorge Juan, Hull # 45 and later redesignated D 25 in 1961. Thus she ended her 17-year career in the U.S. Navy, and began one with the Spanish Navy. The McGowan (Jorge Juan) continued to serve with distinction until she was stricken from the Spanish Navy list on 15 November 1988.

McGowan received nine battle stars for World War II service, and two for Korean service.



Click On Image
For Full Size Image
Image Description
 McGowanUndated World War II image.
McGowan Navy Photo 270-46, amidships looking aft plan view of USS McGowan (DD 678) with USS Bell (DD 587) below at Mare Island on 23 Jan 1946. McGowan was in overhaul at the yard from 6 Nov 1945 to 25 Jan 1946.
McGowan Navy Photo 272-46, forward plan view of USS McGowan (DD 678) with USS Bell (DD 587) below at Mare Island on 23 Jan 1946.
McGowan Photo #: 80-G-478507, USS Ajax (AR-6) tending destroyers and patrol vessels at Sasebo, Japan. Photo is dated 14 December 1952. Ships nested along her port side include (left to right): USS The Sullivans (DD-537); USS McGowan (DD-678); USS Lewis Hancock (DD-675) and Korean frigate Imchin (# 66, ex USS Sausalito, PF-4). Official U.S. Navy Photograph, now in the collections of the National Archives.
McGowan USS Ajax (AR 6) tending destroyers and patrol vessels at Sasebo, Japan. Photo is dated 14 December 1952. Ships nested along her port side include (left to right): USS The Sullivans (DD 537); USS McGowan (DD 678); USS Lewis Hancock (DD 675) and Korean Frigate Imchin (PG 66), (ex USS Sausalito (PF 4).
McGowan Circa 1958.
McGowan Boston Naval Shipyard, May 1960
McGowan Boston Naval Shipyard, May 1960
McGowan Ships plaque.
On Spanish Service
In 1960 Spain received five Fletcher Class Destroyers from the United States Navy including the DD-678 McGowan. The DD-678 McGowan was renamed Jorge Juan and was initially assigned hull number "45" without letters. There are no known photographs of the Jorge Juan (DD-678 McGowan) with the number "45"painted on her hull. In 1961 the Spanish Navy adopted a new numbering system, similar to that of the Western Navies, and the Jorge Juan (DD-678 McGowan) became "D 25". The Jorge Juan (DD-678 McGowan) was striken from the Spanish Navy list on November 15, 1988 and then scrapped.
McGowan McGowan was transferred to Spain at Barcelona, on 1 December 1960. This photo was taken about an hour after the transfer ceremony took place. Curiously enough, she is already flying the Spanish flag, but stills displays her US name! Copyright © Camil Busquets.
McGowan Jorge Juan leaves Barcelona in early December 1960, freshly transferred from the US Navy. She was one of the 39 Fletchers modernized under the FY 52 program (project SCB-74A). As clearly illustrated by this photograph, her #3 5"/38 gun mount, as well as the quad and twin 40mm/56 mounts previously fitted abeam the aft stack and between #3 and #4 guns, were replaced by three twin 3"/50 gun mounts and a Mk.56 gun fire control system; she was fitted with a tripod foremast to support the heavier antennas of her new SPS-6 and -10 radars, and received an updated ESM equipment (the radomes on the aft funnel housing radar direction-finders); her Mk.37 main gun director, atop the bridge, received a Mk.25 radar. On the other hand, she retained a quintuple bank of torpedo tubes, abaft the second stack. Other alterations, more closely visible in other photos on this page, included two fixed "Hedgehogs" in place of twin 40/56 guns before the bridge, and she was reduced to a single depth charge track, along with a torpedo decoy, on the fantail. Copyright © Camil Busquets.
McGowan Jorge Juan (D 25) in mid-1966. Note "Hedgehog" on the 01-level, before the bridge, and the array of radar direction-finder antennas (some covered by radomes, some uncovered) on her aft funnel. Copyright © Camil Busquets.
McGowan This view shows the partially enclosed bridge of the Spanish destroyer Jorge Juan (D 25), ex-USS McGowan (DD 678), with a Mk.37 gun director (fitted with the dish antenna of a Mk.25 radar) mounted on top. Note the fixed Mk.11 "Hedgehog", with ready-service ammunition boxes to each side, on the 01 level, just before the bridge. Barcelona, Spain, Jan. 21, 1979.
McGowan After her FY 52 modernization USS McGowan (DD 678), seen here as the Spanish Jorge Juan, had a single Mk.9 depth charge track mounted on her fantail, to starboard. On the port side (left of the photograph) she was fitted with the winch of a T-Mk.6 "Fanfare" anti-torpedo decoy. Barcelona, Spain, Jan. 21, 1979.
McGowan Three Spanish warships seen during a port call to Barcelona, Spain, on 23 January 1983. From left to right: the Fletcher-class destroyer Jorge Juan (D 25), ex-USS McGowan (DD 678); the Gearing-class destroyer Méndez Núñez (D 63), ex-USS O'Hare (DD 889); and the guided missile frigate Asturias (F 74). As an example of warship growth, Fletchers and Gearings were large "destroyers" by World War II standards, but a "frigate" designed in the 1960s, such as the Asturias, was noticeably larger.


Additional Photos:



Haze Grey


Pilot House


Crews Mess Deck


Crews Quarters


Burial at Sea


Stern View


Narragenset Bay 1957


Venice 1957


At Sea 1959


McGowan Decommissioned 1960





Additional Links

Commanding Officers
Ships Company
Ship History
Shipmate Registry
In Memoriam

Return to:

Bellport.net Index

BayportBluePoint.us Index

Bayport61 Index