LINGAYEN GULF

                             

                                         

 

                                 HEADQUARTERS

                     295TH JOINT ASSAULT SIGNAL C0MPANY
                      APO 321 c/o PM SAN FRANCISCO, CALIF.

                                                                    26 March 1944

                     HIST0RICAL REPORT OF THE 295TH JOINT 
              ASSAULT SIGNAL COMPANY FOR THE M - 1 OPERATION

                                    SECTION I

                                 BACKGROUND

.         1. The plan called for an amphibious assault by major units on the shores of Lingayen Gulf, Luzon,
P.I. The 295th Joint Assault Signal Company was attached for the operation to the 37th Infantry Division,
to furnish necessary Shore Party, Shore Fire Control, and Air Ground Liaison communications.

             a. The target beach extended from the mouth of the Dagupan River on the east to the mouth of
the Calmay River on the west. The beach gradient was quite steep, generally about 2 fathoms at 100
yards from the water line. The terrain was flat, checkerboarded with fish ponds and rice paddies. The
beach itself extended approximately 90 yards inland to the paddies. The entire area was honeycombed
with rivers and swampland, a fact which presented some little trouble, as indicated in Section II of this
report.

        2. The Lingayen Gulf area was in the hands of the Japanese for approximately 3 years, and was
considered to be consequently well fortified for defense. The nature of the terrain was well suited to
defensive action and made offensive assault most difficult. The road net was such that our communications
could be easily disrupted by a small number of enemy troops and our advance seriously delayed.

                                   SECTION II 
                                  OPERATI0NS

        1. It was finally decided, after lengthy conferences and discussions within the unit and with higher
headquarters, that the following elements of JASCO would be furnished:

                     a. With the XIV Corps Headquarters

                        (1) One Shore Fire Control Officer as Corps Naval Gunfire Liaison Oficer

                     b. With 37th Division Headquarters

                        (1) Commanding officer, Executive Officer and a party of three men to furnish overall
JASCO liaison with                                Division Headquarters, through the Signal Officer and other Staff
Officers.

              ( 2) One Officer of the Shore Fire Control Section as Division Naval Liaison
          Officer(3) One Air             Ground Liaison party.

          c. With each Assault Regimental Headquarters (2)

                       (1) One Shore Fire Control Party.

                       (2) One Air Ground Liaison Party.

                   d.With each Assault Battalion Headquarters (4)

                      (1) One Air Ground Liaison Party.

                      (2) One Shore Fire Control Party.

                      (3) One Shore Party Communications Team.

                   e. Aboard each APA and AKA

                      (1) One radio party of five men each. Composition of these parties was: one or two high
speed radio operators                               and 3 message center men, wiremen or basics.

                   f. The remainder of the organization was divided into non-assault groups scheduled to land on
S+1, S+4, and                         S+35. These were composed of headquarters personnel, i.e. cooks,
mechanics, clerks, etc., with an officer in                         charge of each group, and Shore Fire Control
and Air Ground Liaison parties not in assault.

        2. The assault elements joined their respective Division, Regiment, and Battalion Headquarters on 10
December 1944 and prepared to embark. All assault units boarded on 11 December 1944 and sailed l6
December 1944. During the voyage, classes were held for orientation of Infantry groups in Shore Party,
Shore Fire Control and Air Ground Liaison capabilities and functions. Instruction by team and party
commanders was also given JASCO personnel in SOI, Field Orders, and general orientation. A series of
dry runs were made at Manus Island, where the convoy anchored for ten days. On 31 December 1944,
we started the final lap of our journey to Lingayen Gulf.

        3. During the period 5 January 1945 to 9 January 1945, while the convoy was proceeding through
the Leyte Gulf, Mindanao and Sulu Seas, it was the target of numerous enemy aircraft attacks by small but
determined groups. Attacks consisted of bombing and suicide dives by fanatical pilots directly into ships of
the convoy. The 295th Joint Assault Signal Company suffered no casualties as a result of this enemy
action, nor any damage to, or loss of equipment

        4. All JASCO elements supporting assault battalions and regiments landed on beaches crimson 1 and
2 and yellow 1 and 2 during,, Jig hour (0930-1030 Item time). No resistance was encountered during the
landing, as the Japanese had evacuated the area a few days previously. This organization suffered one
casualty as a result of friendly carbine fire (ricochet), aimed at a carabao which had gone berserk. The
casualty was a hand wound, not serious, but the man was evacuated.

        5. The Shore Party Communication teams quickly ran their lateral trunk and local lines, and
established radio communication in all nets; ship to shore, lateral and inland. All communications except
local lines were in within 30 minutes after teams landed.

        6. The Shore Party Communications teams turned the systems over to the Engineer Shore Parties on
S+3 and reported to JASCO Headquarters, .which had been established at the town of Binmaley.

        7. The Shore Fire Control and Air Ground Liaison parties accompanied their respective Infantry
units inland against only the slightest opposition. The advance was delayed only by the restricted road net
and low capacity bridges, some of which had been out of use before our landing.

        8. Although few targets were available for Naval Gunfire (the 37th Division was covered on both
flanks by other assault Divisions) the situation, if resistance had been encountered, would have demanded
the utmost Naval Gunfire support, as mortar and artillery units had great difficulty in moving up pieces and
ammunition. The Shore Fire Control Party with the 1st Battalion, 148th Infantry fired one mission and,
save for control of LCIG fire by our party with 1st Battalion, 129th Infantry, that was the extent of Shore
Fire Control Section employment. The Shore Fire Control parties returned to JASCO control on S+4, the
supported units being outside the range of Naval Gunfire. 

        9. Our Air Ground Liaison Parties landed in the assault waves with their infantry units and proceeded
inland with them. They remained attached until January 18th, when they were returned to JASCO
Headquarters. During their period with infantry they requested 30 reconnaissance missions, of which 26
were flown, and one strafing mission which was canceled. The supported units received much valuable
information from our AGL parties, as a result of the reconnaissance flights and also information intercepted
on the Support Air Observation net.

                                   SECTION III

                   LESSONS LEARNED AND RECOMMENDATIONS

        1. Shore Party Communications.

             a. When an Engineer Boat and Shore Regiment is employed on an operation, there is little need
for JASCO Shore Party teams, as the Engineer Regimentís communications facilities are a11 but identical
to ours. Recommend that JASCO Shore Party Team personnel be attached to the E B and S R only as
required to augment that unitís communications personnel.

             b. Vehicles should be loaded aboard ships carrying personnel who use the vehicle. Some vehicles
were aboard ships not carrying our personnel, and some items were looted.

        2. Shore Fire Control Section.

             a. An additional net for administrative traffic is most desirable. Tactical nets cannot adequately
handle administrative traffic.

             b. Shore Fire Control Parties should be attached to all battalions, not just assault battalions.
When a reserve battalion is put into action, many difficulties are encountered in switching the Shore Fire
Control Party to the new battalion.

             c. The SCR 694 is much more desirable than SCR 284, due in most part to its greater portability
and quiet generator. Vehicular mountings for SCR 694 radios should be provided.

             d. When distance to the firing ships is greater than 15,000 yards, the range of SCR 694s and
SCR 284s is not sufficient to insure communication. Recommend that SCR 193 vehicular sets be furnished
Divisional, Regimental Shore Fire Control Parties for relay in such circumstances.

             e. Higher headquarters should effect distribution of plans and maps and disseminate information
pertinent to the operation before the last few days. Early, complete information is essential.

        3. Air Ground Liaison Section.

             a. The personnel carrier, half track, M3Al, should be replaced by a 2 1/2 ton, 6x6, mounting the
SCR 499 in HO 17. The half track remains at Division Headquarters during the operation, and the truck
has sufficient terrain ability to keep up. Besides being a prime target at Division Headquarters, the
halftrack rides too rough for the expensive, sensitive SCR 499 it carries.

             b. An administrative net is required to parallel the present tactical

net. One additional frequency for administrative traffic among Shore Fire Control parties, Air Ground
Liaison parties, and JASCO Headquarters should be enough to handle such traffic. 

             c. Air Ground Liaison party trucks ( 1/4 ton, 4x4) carry the critical A/NVRC-1 radio equipment
and should not be landed until a dry landing can be made. Parties use portable equipment until these
vehicles arrive and time is not too important. A landing even as late as S+2 for these vehicles should be
planned, rather than risking washing out or drowning out the equipment.

                                                                VINCENT W. FOX
                                                                       Capt., Sig C
                                                                      Commanding

                                         




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