It had been three years since author Tom Crew received feedback on his book Combat Loaded: Across the Pacific on the USS Tate when he received a glowing reader letter from Verne P. Dalton.
"It is with great appreciation that I send you my thanks for your book Combat Loaded," wrote Dalton.
Dalton said his appreciation of the book stemmed from the fact that Crew's story represents a part of America's military history that has been ignored.
"While it's understandable that 'fighting ships' and 'fighting men' get more attention than freighters and porters, battles can't be waged without logistical support," said Dalton. "I believe your book gave a sense of that."
Dalton said he also appreciated the book for its detailed account of both the technical side of the operation and its intrinsic human component.
"Your descriptions and explanations and inclusions of photos, maps and charts should give any student of World War II or 20th Century naval warfare an excellent view of the role an AKA or other transport ship of this time."
In closing, Dalton thanked Crew for giving him a glimpse of the life of his father during his service. For years Dalton wished that someone would write the story of any AKA so he could speculate what his life aboard ship would have been like, wrote Dalton.
Crew's book is the first authoritative history of any of the more than 350 attack transports or attack cargo ships of World War II, with combat narratives alongside details of daily life on board the ships of Tranport Squadron 17 during the waning days of World War II.
For more on Combat Loaded, click here. (link to book on website)