The PT Boat Forum

Forum Category: PT Boats of WWII

Forum Name: PT Boats - General

Topic: John Akin

Just got word that John Akin, one of the founding members of the PT-658 project passed away last weekend.

He will be missed.


Posted By: 29navy | Posted on: May 28, 2011 - 1:54pm
Total Posts: 500 | Joined: Dec 28, 2006 - 3:02pm

Fair winds and following seas.....


Posted By: Will Day | Posted on: May 28, 2011 - 4:13pm
Total Posts: 1881 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 4:19pm

Another member of the Greatist Generation sent to Heaven. God Bless.................

Posted By: Frank J Andruss Sr | Posted on: May 28, 2011 - 4:34pm
Total Posts: 3171 | Joined: Oct 9, 2006 - 6:09am

Thanks Charlie for posting the sad news,
Yes I just got back from Johns funeral down in Salem Or. The entire crew of PT658 was there as well. John was one of the reasons why I got involved in the Save the PT Boat group in the first place. John was always there with a sea story and was very keen on making sure everybody knows about PT Boats and the men that crewed them. John was a real hero to everybody that knew him. John always used to say at our PT Boat Bull Sessions; "You know, if we could have been together back in the war, I think we would have made a pretty good crew!" That was the way he was, he always made you feel like you were a part of something. We will all miss him. Jerry PT658 Portland
PS Here are a few good pics of John Akin both during WW2 and modern day

John Akin

John poses with Thompson same as 1944


John and Bob Ketchum and crew of PT27


John on Board PT658 in 2007


Jerry Gilmartin

Posted By: Jerry Gilmartin | Posted on: May 28, 2011 - 8:09pm
Total Posts: 1218 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 11:16pm

Sorry to hear of the lost of your friend. It's clear he made a difference in your lives.

David Waples

Posted By: David Waples | Posted on: May 29, 2011 - 5:27am
Total Posts: 1593 | Joined: Jan 2, 2007 - 9:55pm

Is it not fantastic that John got to revisit his youth and be involved with undoubtedly one of the finest moments of his life? We should all be as blessed as he was. I salute John Akin and the rest of the greatest generation. We should all hope to be as lucky. Nothing is as rewarding as getting immersed in something you love. GODSPEED John Akin

Posted By: rcr | Posted on: May 29, 2011 - 7:05pm
Total Posts: | Joined: Unregistered

I added some pics of John to my last post. Jerry

Jerry Gilmartin

Posted By: Jerry Gilmartin | Posted on: May 29, 2011 - 8:23pm
Total Posts: 1218 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 11:16pm

GM1/C John Akin was a very specail person indeed! He was larger than life, a kind hearted sole, a work ethic that was un paralleled and a love for the boats that never ended. It saddens me very much to learn of his last patrol, but what a perfect weekend to get underway for his last patrol on the 24 and 27 boats! Close to Memorial Day weekend! It is almost as if he planned it this way.
John wrote me a very detailed 4 page letter about his time in RON 1 on the 24 and 27 boats, It starts out:" Hi Sailor!" he also included some photos of 24 and 27 . One of the extraordinary things that he wrote, that I have never read anywhere, was that when they came back from the Alutians to Pearl Harbor, in 1944, was that RON 1(what was left; PT 20, 24, 27, 29, 42) was immediatly placed in training to head to the Philippines,in spring 1945! The boats were converted to carry both Type C depth charges for blowing up sub nets, or Naval mines for mining Japanese Harbors in the eventual invasion of Japan. RON 1 was the actual test bed for all of those blueprint drawings Garth has on his site, showing proposed conversion of 80' Elcos as possible mine layers.
He was very much behind me and my efforts for PT 48, but, as things changed over the years, I am just so very sorry I could not have taken my friend from the left coast out on her to give him on last ride on a 77' Elco.


Posted By: TED WALTHER | Posted on: May 30, 2011 - 10:28am
Total Posts: 2874 | Joined: Oct 16, 2006 - 7:42am

Hi Ted! Thanks for your kind words. I wanted to point out that in your photo of PT27 underway in Puget Sound, that John Akin can be identified as the sailor wearing the White Hat loading the midships 20mm cannon. I showed John this picture and he pointed himself out. Pretty neat. Jerry

Jerry Gilmartin

Posted By: Jerry Gilmartin | Posted on: May 30, 2011 - 11:25am
Total Posts: 1218 | Joined: Oct 8, 2006 - 11:16pm

I know that guy is 23 year old GM1/c John Akin (that photo of the 27 was taken about 3 months after he married Marjorie), that is why I posted this photo, but only he and us that knew him know that. I am sure John would be the first to say, he was not irreplaceable, but he really was, the shoes he has left can not be filled by 4 men, but I am sure you guys will "Sailor" on, because it is the way he would want you to.
Take care,

Posted By: TED WALTHER | Posted on: May 31, 2011 - 7:35am
Total Posts: 2874 | Joined: Oct 16, 2006 - 7:42am