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Oral History interview of Charles Wert. Interview conducted by Mathis, Sam at Wert Residence.


0:17 Opening Bio; 1:17 Joining Navy; 2:00 Family; 2:55 First day in Navy; 3:43 High School credit for military service; 4:48 Pearl Harbor attacked; 5:12 Why he joined the navy; 5:24 Basic Training; 6:10 KP duty; 7:00 First day in basic; 8:36 Graduate basic; 9:01 Electricians training at Perdue; 10:55 Volunteers for sub school; 11:45 Talks about destroyer escorts; 12:10 Hearing damage; 12:30 DE training facility; 12:58 Crew of DE 32; 13:14 DE mock up; 14:04 Waiting for commission; 14:19 DE 32 Fleming; 17:25 Weapons of DE; 19:12 Hedgehog weapon; 20:17 Shakedown crew; 20:28 18th Birthday in Pearl Harbor; 21:00 Pearl Harbor 2 years later; 21:45 Anti sub patrols; 22:17 Gilbert Islands; 22:30 DE Division set up; 23:23 Tarawa; 24:00 Shell Back; 25:06 Screening Marshall Islands; 26:00 Radar and Sonar; 27:00 Ulithi Atoll; 28:00 Doctor; 28:24 Convoy detail; 28:48 Resupply; 29:30 Brother in Marine Corps; 30:18 Mail censored; 31:05 Meet Brother on troop transport; 32:40 Movies; 34:11 Guam invasion; 35:20 Screen landing ships; 36:40 Pearl Harbor refit; 37:20 Gyro Compass; 38:50 Royal Hawaiian stay; 40:10 Return to Ulithi; 40:50 Convoy duty; 41:11 Back to states; 41:56 30 day leave; 42:00 return home; 42:22 replacement duty; 42:40 assign to Anchor section Philippine Sea HQ; 43:30 Transport to Manila; 43:40 Land on Samar; 44:00 killing time on Samar; 44:34 Watching bombers at Samar; 45:35 Sailors joyride on bombers; 46:22 Moved to Manila; 46:46 Lived in tent; 47:00 Built up base; 48:42 Philippine people; 49:19 Starving kids in Navy trash; 50:06 Purpose of Base; 50:40 Local bars; 51:58 People abused by Japanese; 53:04 Joyriding in aircraft; 53:40 Flying in P-61; 55:30 Taken to wrong base; 57:00 METS; 58:16 Bomb dropped; 58:42 Homeward bound; 59:30 mustered out; 1:00:00 sign up for school with GI bill; 1:00:30 Married; 1:01:12 Life after war.

Date of Birth


Place of Birth

Newton (Iowa)




White - Non Hispanic

Home State


War or Conflict

World War II



Begin/End date of Service - 1st



Audio; Sound


Entrance into Service


Branch of Service

U.S. Navy

Unit of Service

USS Fleming (DE 32) (Anchor Section) Philippine Sea Frontier Headquarters (7th Fleet Hdqs.)

Location of Service

Gilbert Islands (Tavarra); Marshall Islands (Kwajalein); Marianas Islands (Guam, Saipan, Tinian)

Highest Rank

Electrician's Mate Petty Officer 3rd Class; EM3

Prisoner of War


Service Related Injury



World War II Victory Medal; Philippine Liberation Medal; American Campaign Medal; Asiatic Pacific Service Medal; Good Conduct Medal


Maintain Electrical Systems on ships and ashore


Not applicable

City of Birth


Country of Birth

United States


Mathis, Sam

Interview Date


Location of Interview

Wert Residence


Wert, Charles A.; World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal narratives; United States. Navy

Collection Description

Contains logs, audio and video recordings of interviews with Central Florida's veterans as part of a history class project for the students at the University of Central Florida (UCF). The UCF Community Veterans History Project(CVHP) started in fall 2010. It collects, preserves, and makes accessible to the public the experiences of Central Florida's veterans so that future generations will better understand the realities of conflict. It is a collaborative endeavor supported by multiple departments and offices at UCF. The veterans' histories are archived and made digitally available through the UCF library and selected materials are contributed to the Veterans History Project at the Library of Congress.

Contributor Affiliation / Organization

RICHES; University of Central Florida


Mathis, Sam

Length of Interview

67 Minutes


Department of History, University of Central Florida




All rights are held by the respective holding institution. This material is posted publicly for non-profit educational uses, excluding printed publication. For permission to reproduce and/or for copyright information contact Special Collections and University Archives, University of Central Florida Libraries, (407) 823-2576. http://library.ucf.edu/about/departments/special-collections-university-archives/


University of Central Florida Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives

Contributing Project

UCF Community Veterans History Project

Document Type