John Plunkett-Cole, RAN

Born  4 Sep 1906East Melbourne, Victoria, Australia


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Ranks

1 Jan 1920 Cadet
15 May 1924 Mid.
15 Sep 1926 A/S.Lt.
30 Mar 1927 S.Lt.
30 Mar 1929 Lt.
30 Mar 1937 Lt.Cdr.
31 Dec 1944 Cdr.
31 Dec 1951 Capt.

Retired: 4 Sep 1966


Decorations

Warship Commands listed for John Plunkett-Cole, RAN


ShipRankTypeFromTo
HMAS Vendetta (D 69)Lt.Cdr.Destroyer18 May 19439 Dec 1943
HMAS Nepal (G 25)Lt.Cdr.Destroyer31 Mar 19447 Oct 1944
HMAS Napier (G 97)Lt.Cdr.Destroyer8 Oct 19441 Nov 1944
HMAS Norman (G 49)Lt.Cdr.Destroyer2 Nov 19442 Sep 1945

Career information

Transferred to the Emergency List on 1 March 1962.

Events related to this officer

Destroyer HMAS Vendetta (D 69)


18 May 1943

Convoy BT 60.

This convoy departed Caloundra (near Brisbane) for Townsville on 18 May 1943.

This convoy was made up of the transports; Admiral Halstead (American, 3545 GRT, built 1920), Giang Ann (British, 1265 GRT, built 1902), Sarpen (Norwegian, 1864 GRT, built 1912), Van den Bosch (Dutch, 2354 GRT, built 1903) and William M. Meredith (American, 7180 GRT, built 1943).

On departure from Caloundra the convoy was escorted by the destroyer HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN), minesweeper HMAS Geelong (A/Lt.Cdr. C.G. Hill, RANR(S)), submarine chaser USS SC 748 (Lt.(jg.) M.B. Stone, Jr., USNR) and motor launch HMAS ML 425 (Lt. G.S.H. Champion, RANR(S)).

Around 2359K/19, HMAS Vendetta parted company with the convoy and set course to return to Brisbane.

The convoy arrived at Townsville on 21 May 1943. (1)

20 May 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) arrived at Brisbane from convoy escort duty. (1)

21 May 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)

Convoy BT 61.

This convoy departed Caloundra (near Brisbane) for Townsville on 18 May 1943.

This convoy was made up of the transports; Balikpapan (Dutch, 1279 GRT, built 1938), Henry Dearborn (American, 7176 GRT, built 1942), Pahud (Dutch, 2075 GRT, built 1927), Suva (British, 4873 GRT, built 1938), Van Spilbergen (Dutch, 3234 GRT, built 1908) and William Ellery Channing (American, 7176 GRT, built 1942).

On departure from Caloundra the convoy was escorted by the destroyer HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN), minesweeper HMAS Goulburn (Lt.Cdr. B. Paul, RANR(S)), submarine chaser USS SC 648 (?).

Around 0800K/23, USS SC 648 obtained an A/S contact and dropped depth charges. HMAS Vendetta joined the hunt but no contact could be obtained. The hunt was called off around 1030K/23 and USS SC 648 set course to rejoin the convoy. HMAS Vendetta did not rejoined the convoy as she was ordered to proceed to a rendezvous with the American troop transport President Johnson.

The convoy arrived at Townsville on 24 May 1943. (1)

24 May 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1500K/24, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN), reached the rendezvous position with the American troop transport President Johnson (13639 GRT, built 1904) and her escort, the French armed merchant cruiser Cap des Palmes (Cdr. G.E.J. Cabanier) but the ships are not sighted.

Rendezvous was finally made around 0900K/25. The ships were then escorted to Caloundra where they all arrived around 2245K/25. (1)

31 May 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)

Convoy BT 63.

This convoy departed Brisbane for Townsville on 31 May 1943.

This convoy was made up of the transports; Nancy Hanks (American, 7194 GRT, built 1943), President Johnson (American, 13639 GRT, built 1904) and Van Heutsz (Dutch, 4552 GRT, built 1926).

On departure from Brisbane the convoy was escorted by the destroyer HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) and the submarine chasers USS SC 648 (?) and USS SC 748 (Lt.(jg.) M.B. Stone, Jr., USNR).

Around 1715K/1, HMAS Vendetta parted company with the convoy. HMAS Vendetta then set course to proceed to a rendezvous with a ahip coming from the east in position 26°37'S, 159°42'E.

The convoy arrived at Townsville on 2 June 1943. (2)

3 Jun 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0900K/3, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) joined the transport Mormacsea (American, 7773 GRT, built 1941).

HMAS Vendetta arrived at Brisbane around 1000K/4, having parted company with the transport off Caloundra. (3)

4 Jun 1943
Around 1210K/4, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to conduct an A/S search east of Moreton Bay in position 27°17'S, 153°55'E. An enemy submarine had been reported. [The Japanese I-174 was operating off the Australian east coast.]

Around 1700K/4, she joined HMAS Warramunga (Cdr. E.F.V. Dechaineux, DSC, RAN) which had departed Brisbane earlier on the 4th to act on the same submarine report.

They parted company at 0505K/5, when HMAS Vendetta set course to proceed to position 27°06'S, 154°10'E where she was to make rendezvous around 0600K/5 with the stores ship USS Mizar (6982 GRT, built 1932). The stores ship did not show up at the rendezvous but the transport Cape Newenham (American, 6711 GRT, built 1943) was nearby so she was then escorted to Caloundra. HMAS Vendetta returned to Brisbane around 1300K/5.

HMS Warramunga later set course to proceed to Caloundra. On the way she encountered USS Mizar and then escorted her to Caloundra. HMAS Warramunga then proceeded to Brisbane. (3)

5 Jun 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1700K/5, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane for Sydney where she arrived the following day. (3)

7 Jun 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0800K/7, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Sydney escorting the transport Cremer (Dutch, 4608 GRT, built 1926) northwards.

They parted company around 0130K/10 near Lady Elliot Island.

HMAS Vendetta then proceeded to Brisbane where she arrived around 1910K/10. (3)

11 Jun 1943
From 11 June 1943 to early on 18 June 1943, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) cleaned boilers at Brisbane. (3)

18 Jun 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1220K/18, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN), which had completed boiler cleaning earlier in the day, departed Brisbane for A/S patrol to the south of Brisbane. Two days before a submarine had attacked convoy GP 55 and sunk on transport and damaged an LST.

HMAS Vendette discontinued her A/S patrol at 0600K/20 when course was set to position 27°26'S, 160°00'E to make rendezvous with the (troop) transport Willard A. Holbrook (American (Army transport), 14812 GRT, built 1921) around 1200K/21.

However at 1400K/20, a signal was received ordering her to proceed to Elizabeth Reef where a submarine had been reported [This may again have been I-174 which now had just left the Australian east coast to proceed back to Truk via a route east of the Solomon Islands.]

She arrived off Elizabeth around daylight the following morning but no submarine was on the reef. Around 0700K/21 the search for the submarine was abandoned and course was set to position 27°36'S, 158°42'E, the new position for rendezvous with the Willard A. Holbrook. It however soon became apparent that HMAS Vendetta was unable to reach the rendezvous position in time due to the weather conditions. HMAS Vendetta was later ordered to proceed to Sydney where she arrived around 2330K/23 with only eight tons of fuel remaining. (3)

25 Jun 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0800K/25, HMAS Stuart (Lt.Cdr. N.A. Mackinnon, RAN) and HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Sydney escorting the destroyer tender USS Dobbin (T/Capt. H.N. Williams, USN) to Brisbane where they arrived in the morning of the 27th. Both escorting destroyers did not enter Brisbane but anchored near Bribie Island. (4)

27 Jun 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0700K/27, HMAS Stuart (Lt.Cdr. N.A. Mackinnon, RAN) and HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed their anchorage near Bribie Island to escort the attack transport USS Henry T. Allen (APA 15) (Cdr. J. Meyer, USN).

Around 0125K/28, the destroyers parted company with the attack transport near Lady Elliot Island.

HMAS Stuart, was ordered to proceed ahead and returned to Brisbane around 1420K/28.

HMAS Vendetta arrived at Brisbane around 1730K/28. (4)

30 Jun 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) conducted gunnery exercises in Moreton Bay. (3)

1 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0520K/1, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to make rendezvous with the transport Pennant (American, 6576 GRT, built 1937) in position 27°15'S, 160°55'E.

The transport was met at the arranged rendezvous position around 1000K/2.

HMAS Vendetta and the transport arrived at Brisbane around 1950K/3. (5)

5 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1510K/5, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to escort the tanker Northfield (American, 10448 GRT, built 1943) northwards.

They parted company around 1330K/6 near Lady Elliot Island.

HMAS Vendetta returned to Brisbane around 0825K/7. (5)

8 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0520K/8, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to make rendezvous with the troop transport Monterey (American, 18017 GRT, built 1932) in position 27°10'S, 162°18'E.

Rendezvous was effected around 1000K/10 and course was set for Brisbane where they arrived around 1520K/11. (5)

13 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
While changing berth, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) sustained some minor damage through colliding with the pier. (5)

15 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0100K/15, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane. She then joined the troop transport Monterey (American, 18017 GRT, built 1932) off Caloundra and escorted her eastwards until 2300K/15.

HMAS Vendetta anchored in Moreton Bay around 1930K/16. She proceeded to Brisbane the following morning. (5)

17 Jul 1943
Around 1400K/17, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to make rendezvous with the transport Torrens (Norwegian, 6713 GRT, built 1939) in position 24°38'S, 158°48'E.

Rendezvous was effected around 1530K/18 and course was set for Lady Elliot Island where they parted company around 1300K/19.

HMAS Vendetta returned to Brisbane around 0815K/20. (5)

20 Jul 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
From 20 to 31 July 1943, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) cleaned boilers at Brisbane. She was also docked, undocking at 2100K/31. (5)

6 Aug 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1200K/6, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to proceed to position 27°00'S, 156°20'E and make rendezvous with the troopship Lurline (American, 18009 GRT, built 1932) and her escort, the destroyer USS Warrington (T/Capt. H.R. Demarest, USN).

Rendezvous was effected around 1440K/7 and HMAS Vendetta joined the two American ships.

They all arrived at Brisbane around 1200K/8. (6)

10 Aug 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1150K/10, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Caloundra to escort the troopship Lurline (American, 18009 GRT, built 1932) eastwards. They parted company around 1800K/10.

HMAS Vendetta then set course to proceed to position 24°53'S, 161°57'E to make rendezvous with the troop transport Willard A. Holbrook (American (Army transport), 14812 GRT, built 1921) around 1500K/11.

The troop transport was not encountered at the rendezvous position at the given time and HMAS Vendetta started a search for her. At dark the ship had still not been found and W/T silence was broken to inform the Naval Officer in Charge, Brisbane.

Rendezvous was now made at dawn on the 13th in position 24°15'S, 156°08'E and course was set for the Curtis Channel.

At 1315K/13, a signal was received that a surfaced submarine had been spotted in the Curtis Channel. The master of the Willard A. Holbrook decided to change course and now head for the Capricorn Channel. As HMAS Vendetta had not enough fuel remaining to escort her there she parted company to return to Brisbane where she arrived around 1630K/14. The submarine sighted was thought to be Allied. (6)

15 Aug 1943
Around 1200K/15, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane escorting the transport Torrens (Norwegian, 6713 GRT, built 1939) to the vicinity of Lady Elliot Island. They parted company around 2100K/15. HMAS Vendetta then set course to position 27°07'S, 159°24'E where rendezvous was to be made with the troopship David C. Shanks (American, 12097 GRT, built 1943). Rendezvous was effected around 1000K/17.

They arrived at Caloundra around 0800K/18. (6)

18 Aug 1943
Around 1400K/18, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Moreton Bay to proceed to position 25°32'S, 156°13'E where rendezvous was to be made with HMAS Australia (Capt. H.B. Farncomb, MVO, DSO, RAN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral V.A.C. Crutchley, VC, DSC, RN) and then escort her to Brisbane.

Rendezvous was effected around 0545K/19.

HMAS Australia and HMAS Vendetta arrived at Brisbane around 1745K/19. (6)

21 Aug 1943
Around 0830K/21, HMAS Australia (Capt. H.B. Farncomb, MVO, DSO, RAN, flying the flag of Rear-Admiral V.A.C. Crutchley, VC, DSC, RN) and HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane for Sydney where they arrived around 1100K/22. (7)

22 Aug 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1430K/22, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Sydney for Caloundra where she arrived around 1655K/23. The troopship David C. Shanks (American, 12097 GRT, built 1943) was then joined by HMAS Vendetta and course was set to Lady Elliot Island. They parted company around 0645K/24 and HMAS Vendetta set course to return to Caloundra where she arrived around 1845K/24. (6)

25 Aug 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0700K/25, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Caloundra escorting the transport Maui (American, 10261 GRT, built 1917) eastwards.

They parted company around 1800K/25 and HMAS Vendetta set course to return to Caloundra.

While en-route she was ordered to join HMAS Gladstone (T/Lt. J.W. Penney, RANR(S)) which was conducting an A/S search off Great Sandy Island where the presence of an enemy submarine was suspected.

Around 1400K/26, HMAS Vendetta had to abandon her A/S patrol due to fuel shortage and she arrived at Brisbane around 2200K/26.

(6)

29 Aug 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
During 29/30 August 1943, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) conducted A/S exercises off Brisbane with USS Scamp (T/Cdr. W.G. Ebert).

On completion of the exercises around 1815K/30, HMAS Vendetta set course for position 25°57'N, 160°10'E to make rendezvous with the transport USS Rochembeau.

On arrival at the rendezvous position the transport was not sighted and also a search for her produced no results. Course was later set for Sydney where HMAS Vendetta arrived around 1440K/2. (6)

29 Aug 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)

Convoy PW 2293.

This convoy departed San Francisco on 29 August 1943.

It was made up of the transports Kota Agoeng (Dutch, 7356 GRT, built 1930) and President Grant (American, 10558 GRT, built 1921).

On departure from San Francisco the convoy was escorted by the destroyer USS Grayson (T/Cdr. O.H. Hansen, USN).

On 9 September and 15 September, USS Grayson fuelled at sea from the Kota Agoeng. Also provisions were transferred.

Around 0845K/22, the destroyer HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) joined the convoy. USS Grayson then parted company with the convoy and proceeded to Noumea.

The convoy arrived at Caloundra around 1630K/23. (8)

3 Sep 1943
Around 0730K/3, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Sydney. She to escort the transport Taroona (Australian, 4286 GRT, built 1935) to the vicinity of Lady Elliot Island.

The ships parted company around 1700K/5.

HMAS Vendetta then set course for Caloundra, however at 1945K/5 a signal was received that she was to make rendezvous with the transport Boschfontein (Dutch, 7139 GRT, built 1928) and then escort her towards Lady Elliot Island.

Around 0050K/6, HMAS Vendetta dropped anchor in Platypus Bay and then left again around 2330K/6 to make rendezvous with the southbound transport. The rendezvous was effected at 0530K/7 and three hours later the ships parted company again.

HMAS Vendetta arrived in Moreton Bay around 2300K/7 and anchored for the night. She arrived at Brisbane around 0840K/8. HMAS Vendetta then commenced boiler cleaning but was to be ready for sea with 24 hours notice. (9)

10 Sep 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN), which is boiler cleaning at Brisbane, is ordered to be ready for sea at 0600K/12. (9)

12 Sep 1943
Around 0600K/12, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane. At sea, off Caloundra she joined the transport Mormacsea (American, 7773 GRT, built 1941) and relieved her current escort USS PC-476 (Lt.(jg) D.P. Butler, USNR).

The Mormacsea was then escorted by HMAS Vendetta to the vicinity of Lady Elliot Island. They parted company around 1100K/13.

HMAS Vendetta arrived at Caloundra around 2145K/13. (9)

14 Sep 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1020K/14, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Caloundra escorting the stores ship USS Mizar towards Lady Elliot Island.

They parted company around 0100K/15.

HMAS Vendetta arrived back at Melbourne around 1410K/15. (9)

16 Sep 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1300K/16, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane escorting the troop transport Fred C. Ainsworth (American, 12097 GRT, built 1943) eastwards

They parted company around 1345K/17. HMAS Vendetta then commenced escorting the transport Mormaclark (American, 6711 GRT, built 1943) towards Caloundra.

HMAS Vendetta arrived at Brisbane around 1850K/18. (9)

21 Sep 1943
Around 0900K/21, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to make rendezvous with convoy PW 2293.

Rendezvous was effected around 0845K/22.

[For more info on this convoy see the event ' Convoy PW 2293 ' for 29 August 1943.] (9)

22 Sep 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1940K/22, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) arrived at Brisbane from convoy escort duty. (9)

24 Sep 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1600K/24, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane. Off Caloundra she joined the transports Cape Greig (American, 6711 GRT, built 1943) and President Grant (American, 10558 GRT, built 1921) to escort them to the vicinity of Lady Elliot Island.

On HMAS Vendetta arriving off Caloundra the President Grant reported that she had problems with her compass and was unable to depart until repairs were completed. HMAS Vendetta therefore dropped anchor to await the completion of these.

Around 0600K/25, the ships finally proceeded.

HMAS Vendetta parted company around 0315K/26 and then set course to return to Caloundra.

However she then received a signal to make rendezvous with the transport Day Star (American, 6599 GRT, built 1939) and rendezvous was made around 1200K/26 in position 25°58'S, 155°15'E and course was then set to escort this ship towards the vicinity of Lady Elliot Island.

They parted company around 0355K/27.

HMAS Vendetta arrived at Brisbane around 1630K/27. (9)

28 Sep 1943

Convoy QL 16.

This convoy departed Brisbane on 28 September 1943.

It was made up of the following transports; Balikpapan (Dutch, 1279 GRT, built 1938), Carola (Panamanian, 3842 GRT, built 1916), Colorado (American, 2689 GRT, built 1920), Dundula (Australian, 3344 GRT, built 1920), Duntroon (Australian, 10346 GRT, built 1935), Green Gables Park (Canadian, 7132 GRT, built 1943), John Evans (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Mangola (British, 3352 GRT, built 1920), Ozark (American, 2689 GRT, built 1919) and Tambua (Australian, 3566 GRT, built 1938).

The auxiliary minelayer HMAS Bungaree (A/Cdr. R.B.A. Hunt, OBE, RAN) and Tank Landing Ship USS LST 170 (Lt. T.N. Kelly, USCGR) were also part of the convoy.

On departure from Brisbane the convoy was escorted by the destroyer HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN), minesweeper HMAS Ararat (T/Lt. N.M. Muzzell, RANR(S)) and the patrol vessels USS PC 1122 (Lt. J.J. Peck, USNR), USS PC 1123 (Lt. W.R. Plage, USNR) and USS SC 650 (Lt.(jg) R.E. Huff, USNR).

Around 0300K/30, near Lady Elliot Island, HMAS Vendetta parted company with the convoy to proceed to Caloundra.

Around 1040K/30, the convoy was dispersed off Bustard Head.

30 Sep 1943
Around 1500K/30, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) arrived at Caloundra from convoy escort duty.

She departed again around 2122K/30 to make rendezvous with the troop transport President Johnson (American, 13639 GRT, built 1904).

Rendezvous was effected around 1050K/1 in position 27°22'S, 156°12'E and course was set for Brisbane where they arrived around 0630K/2. (10)

3 Oct 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0855L/3, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane. She anchored off Bribie Island around 1245K/3 to await the arrival of the transport Boschfontein (Dutch, 7139 GRT, built 1928) as she was to escort this ship to the eastward.

This ship was however delayed and HMAS Vendetta was ordered to proceed to sea to make rendezvous with the troop transport Willard A. Holbrook (American, 14812 GRT, built 1921).

Rendezvous was effected around 1345L/4 and course was set for Brisbane where they arrived around 1140L/5. (11)

7 Oct 1943
around 0900L/7, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to make rendezvous with the troopship West Point (American, 26454 GRT, built 1940) approaching from the east.

As a signal was received that the West Point was 14 hours late, HMAS Vendetta anchored.

She then weighted anchor around 2330L/7, to proceed to the rendezvous which was effected around 0620L/9.

Course was then set for Sydney where they arrived around 1100L/10.

On arrival at Sydney, HMAS Vendetta had some condensor problems for which repairs were undertaken. Also a diver inspected the propellers and underwater fittings, which were all found to be in good condition. (11)

11 Oct 1943
Around 2255L/11, the landing ship HMAS Kanimbla (A/Cdr. N.H. Shaw, RAN) departed Sydney to put to sea. She was escorted by the destroyer HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN). They were joined around 0700L/12 by the attack cargo ship USS Algorab (T/Capt. J.R. Lannom, USN) and landing ships HMAS Manoora (A/Capt. C.C. Baldwin, RAN) and HMAS Westralia (Cdr. A.V. Knight, RD, RANR(S)) which also came from Sydney.

Course was then set for Moreton Bay (Brisbane).

Around 2100L/13, the convoy was joined by the minesweepers HMAS Geelong (A/Lt.Cdr. C.G. Hill, RANR(S)) and HMAS Stawell (T/Lt. S.J. Griffith, RANR(S)) as additional escorts.

They arrived in Moreton Bay around 0900L/14. (11)

14 Oct 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 2315L/14, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Moreton Bay to make rendezvous with the transport Meteor (American, 6221 GRT, built 1943).

Rendezvous was effected around 0900L/15 in position 27°14'S, 155°14'E and course was set for Brisbane where they arrived around 2030L/15.

On arrival at Brisbane HMAS Vendetta commenced cleaning boilers. Also on the 16th repairs to her condensers were commenced. (11)

23 Oct 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) completed boiler cleaning at Brisbane. (11)

25 Oct 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) was to conducted D/G trials off Brisbane but her steering gear broke down and the D/G trials had to be cancelled upon which she returned to Brisbane. (11)

29 Oct 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) is towed upstream and was docked in the drydock for repairs. (11)

3 Nov 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) is undocked at Brisbane. She then proceeded to Moreton Bay.

She departed Moreton Bay around 2130L/3, to make rendezvous with the troop transport Fred C. Ainsworth (American, 12097 GRT, built 1943) approaching Brisbane from the east.

Rendezvous was effected around 0500L/4 and the American ship was then escorted to Caloundra.

HMAS Vendetta arrived at Brisbane around 1400L/4. (12)

8 Nov 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) conducted gunnery exercises in Moreton Bay. (12)

9 Nov 1943
Around 1400L/9, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Moreton Bay to make rendezvous with the transport Cape Meares (American, 7104 GRT, built 1943).

Rendezvous was effected around 1245L/10 and course was set for the Curtis Channel.

Around 0950L/11, they parted company near Lady Elliot Island.

HMAS Vendetta arrived in Moreton Bay around 0110L/12. She proceeded up river to Brisbane later in the morning. (12)

14 Nov 1943

Convoy QL 29.

This convoy departed Brisbane on 14 November 1943.

It was made up of the following transports; Ban Hong Liong (British, 1671 GRT, built 1908), Cardross (Australian, 2515 GRT, built 1919), Floyd Bennett (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Francis G. Newlands (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Frank Joseph Irwin (American, 7176 GRT, built 1942), John Alden (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), John Jacob Astor (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943), Murada (Australian, 3345 GRT, built 1921), Point San Pedro (American, 3303 GRT, built 1920), Tambua (Australian, 3566 GRT, built 1938) and William Beaumont (American, 7176 GRT, built 1943).

On departure from Brisbane it was escorted by the destroyer HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN), minesweepers HMAS Geelong (A/Lt.Cdr. C.G. Hill, RANR(S)), HMAS Lithgow (T/Lt. C.T.G. Haultain, RANR(S)) and the patrol vessel SC-741 (Lt. C.K.S. Latus, USNR).

Around 2000L/15, near Lady Elliot Island, HMAS Vendetta and HMAS Geelong parted company to return to Brisbane. [No details on the other two escorts.]

HMAS Vendetta arrived at Brisbane around 1220L/16.

HMAS Geelong arrived at Brisbane around 1330L/16.

The convoy arrived at Townsville on 17 November 1943.

19 Nov 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0700L/19, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to make rendezvous at 1600L/20 in position 32°58'N, 158°14'E with the troopship USS Mount Vernon (24289 GRT, built 1932) and then escort her to Sydney.

At 1524L/20, a signal was received that the troopship had passed through the rendezvous position around 1200L/20. Course was then set to intercept the troopship at daylight on 21 November. Speed had to be increased to 23 knots but due to the weather conditions the speed had later to be reduced to 18 knots and the thought of intercepting the troopship had to be abandoned.

HMAS Vendetta arrived at Sydney around 1000L/21. (12)

22 Nov 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1000L/22, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Sydney for Caloundra where she arrived around 1500L/23. She then joined the transport Cefalu (American, 5221 GRT, built 1930) to escort her to Gladstone where they arrived around noon the following day. (12)

25 Nov 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0820L/25, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Gladstone escorting the transport Taroona (Australian, 4286 GRT, built 1935) to Sydney where they arrived around 1300L/27. (12)

28 Nov 1943
Around 1000L/28, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Sydney to make rendezvous with USS Altamaha (T/Capt. A.C. Olney, Jr., USN) and then escort her to Caloundra.

Rendezvous was effected around 1700L/29 and the ships arrived at Caloundra around 1000L/30. HMAS Vendetta then went on to Brisbane where she arrived around 1400L/30. (12)

3 Dec 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 1700L/3, HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) departed Brisbane to proceed position 27°01'S, 155°01'E and make rendezvous with the transport Cape Mendocino (American, 7104 GRT, built 1943).

Rendezvous was effected as planned and both ships arrived off Caloundra around 0230L/4. (13)

5 Dec 1943 (position 0.00, 0.00)
Around 0550L/5, USS Altamaha (T/Capt. A.C. Olney, Jr., USN) departed Moreton Bay for San Francisco. She was joined around 0900L/5 by HMAS Vendetta (Lt.Cdr. J. Plunkett-Cole, RAN) for A/S escort.

Around 2100K/5, HMAS Vendetta parted company to return to Brisbane where she arrived around 1200L/6.

(14)

Sources

  1. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for May 1943
  2. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for May 1943 + Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for June 1943
  3. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for June 1943
  4. Report of proceedings of HMAS Stuart for June 1943 + Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for June 1943
  5. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for July 1943
  6. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for August 1943
  7. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for August 1941
  8. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for September 1943 + Deck log of USS Grayson for August 1943 + Deck log of USS Grayson for September 1943
  9. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for September 1943
  10. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for September 1943 + Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for October 1943
  11. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for October 1943
  12. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for November 1943
  13. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for December 1943
  14. Report of proceedings of HMAS Vendetta for December 1943 + War Diary of USS Altamaha for December 1943


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