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Guam Bear

Guam Bear


Built in 1944 at Wilmington, North Carolina as a 6300 ton Maritime Commission C2-S-AJ3 type freighter and launched on 13 June 1944. She was acquired by the Navy on 27 June and following conversion was placed in commission during December as a Tolland class attack cargo ship and named USS Towner. She transited the Panama Canal in January 1945 and sailed for the South Pacific. During the remainder of the war she was engaged in training activities and carried cargo and personnel between US bases from New Caledonia to the Philippines. In early September 1945 she took troops and equipment to Japan for occupation duty.
She was decommissioned and stricken from the Navy List in June 1946 and laid up in the James River.
In 1947 she was towed to Bath, Maine for re-conversion to a civilian freighter. She had a series of owners and was subsequently named Philippine Bear, Kaimana and Guam Bear, as seen in this photograph.
She was in collision with another ship early on in 1967 and was scuttled. She was declared a constructive total loss in March of that year.

Photograph belongs to Stuart Smith
Copyright A. Duncan, Gravesend, Kent.
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