The Cal carried approximately 4,000,000 gallons of fuel oil, 1,500,000 gallons of jet fuel and 500,000 gallons of aviation fuel. With that amount of volatile fuel and all the other activities taking place during unreps, the crew of the Cal had to maintain absolute vigilance to avoid dire consequences. While not a "glamorous" man of war, during the the three wars she served in, the USS Caliente was critical to the wars' efforts. She enabled U.S. ground, air and sea service men to maintain battle readiness by supplying them with vital fuel and other supplies. During peace she provided the same support to the fleet ensuring our countries' readiness for any occurrence. All the Cal's crews, from 1943 to 1973, served our country with the utmost of dedication and pride.
This website was created to the preserve memories of the Cal and its crews and includes this home page from which you can navigate to;
1) information about past and upcoming reunions,
2) newsletters published since December 2006 (with plans to add editions dating back to 1997,
3) association information including;
a) association background information,
b) current officers,
c) membership information including joining us on Facebook,
d) a crews list of all known shipmates who served aboard the Cal and
e) an email list.
4) a gallery of pictures collected over the years by our shipmates including those taken at reunions.
We hope you enjoy this site and find it valuable in linking with past shipmates, ships events and stories from shipmates. If you are a relative of a Cal shipmate we hope this site will assist you in finding information about your relative and fill in some of his past (in the Cal's days Navy ships were all male).
We welcome any comments or suggestions.
International Call Sign: NZFU
Welcome to the USS Caliente Association website. The USS Caliente (AO-53) (Cal) was a fleet auxiliary oiler that proudly served our country in WWII, Korea and Vietnam. The Cal carried a crew varying in number between 200 and 300 and during her 30 years of service earned 14 battle stars and eight campaign ribbons. The Cal not only provided fuel for the fleet she bought mail, movies and supplies to ships that were unable to visit port as often as the Cal. Fuel was transferred between ships during underway replenishments (unreps). During unreps ships were about 75 feet apart and could be on both sides of the Cal. The crew had to maintain station (keep on course and speed), keep fuel lines taut, keep fuel pumps running and transfer necessary mail, supplies and often personnel to the alongside ship(s).
Click on "Association Info" button for Association Officers, crews list, email list and dues information. Please send any corrections to email@example.com
USS Caliente facts: