Unit History: USS Jason
The USS Jason (ARH-1) was: Laid down, 9 March 1942, at Los Angeles Shipbuilding and Drydock Co., San Pedro, California, as a Heavy-hull Repair Ship; Launched, 3 April 1943; Commissioned USS Jason (ARH-1), 19 June 1944, Capt. A. O. R. Bergesen in command; Redesignated Repair Ship (AR-8), 9 September 1957.
Jason was commissioned as the United States accelerated its drive to push the Japanese back to their home islands. After brief shakedown and fitting out, the repair ship arrived Pearl Harbor 6 July 1944 on the first leg of her journey to the Pacific battle area. She arrived Purvis Bay in the Solomon Islands 17 August to commence operations with Service Squadron 10. Two months later she arrived Ulithi, where she was to spend the greater part of the war, performing the vital task of keeping the U.S. Navy’s ships at peak strength and operating efficiency.
For 7 months at Ulithi, as American forces captured island after island from the Japanese, Jason, many times under enemy attack, repaired broken hulls, buckled decks and twisted bulkheads of every type of ship in the U.S. Navy. This floating shipyard turned seemingly hopeless battle wrecks into rejuvenated fighting ships again able to stand out gallantly in the final victorious months. As the action crept closer to Japan, Jason sailed for Leyte arriving there 28 May 1945. She remained there for the duration of the war continuing to service ships of the U.S. Pacific Fleet.
After the Japanese surrender, she joined a convoy of units from the U.S. 7th Fleet and arrived Jinsen, Korea, 8 September with the first occupation troops. She operated out of Jinsen, Korea, and Tsingtao, China until mid-February 1946, performing repair services and assisting in the evacuation of Japanese nationals. Jason returned to Terminal Island, California, 9 March for overhaul. Her rest was a brief one, however, as she sailed once again in May for the Far East. For the next 4 years she serviced the U.S. Pacific Fleet, alternating between Japan and California.