Telling the Story of Joe McDevitt and the U.S.S. Leon

Five years ago my family found a box with letters that my Dad had written home to his family while serving in the Pacific during WWII. I read the letters and decided to share his story by writing a book. After three years of research and two years of writing, I published that book—All Came Home—in early May 2015. It is available in soft and hard bound editions online and at bookstores. If this sounds like a story you would like to read, check out our web site: AllCameHome.com.

So now the book is written, and I’m sharing the story. I’m scheduling and delivering presentations here in Springfield and beyond. Want to talk about a presentations? Contact me! This is a great story about a bunch of American heroes.

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7 comments on “Telling the Story of Joe McDevitt and the U.S.S. Leon

  1. Dan Cronin says:

    While reviewing my fathers US Army records I found that on November 10,1944 my Father TEC 5 John H Cronin received the Ancient Order of the Deep aboard the USS Leon. Imagine my surprise when I discovered that in 1967 I served aboard the Isthmian Lines; Steel Chemist, once named the USS Leon.
    Both of us sailing in Pacific waters. I am wondering if any photos exist of the USS Leon APA-48?

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    • Jane Kenning says:

      My father served on the USS Leon during WWII. He has photos of the ship and also other info.

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    • Hi Dan:

      Sorry for my delay responding to you. Such an amazing coincidence that you and your Dad served aboard the same ship. Wow.

      I suspect that you have seen the picture of the Steel Chemist at the Nav Source site, but I’ll include that link here in case you have not seen it previously.

      http://www.navsource.org/archives/10/03/03048.htm

      I have looked continuously for pictures of the Leon since beginning the research for my book All Came Home back in 2010. The best picture in existence—I believe—in in my book and on the back cover. My book producer did a nice job touching it up, and I would be happy to send you an electronic copy. If you will contact me through the contact link at our web site with an email address, I’ll get it out to you asap.

      Here is another thought. I made copies at the National Archives of the Action Reports from each of the Leon’s five amphibious assaults. If you could tell me what unit your Dad served in, I’ll research the Action Reports and see if there is anything about your Dad’s unit that may be of interest to you.

      Best,

      Paul McDevitt

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  2. Jane Kenning says:

    My father served on the USS Leon with Joe McDevitt during WWII. He has photos and many stories to share. Just ordered your book for him.

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  3. Hi Dan:

    What an amazing coincidence… that both you and your Dad served aboard the same ship! And walked the same decks that my Dad walked…

    You’ve probably seen the picture of the Steel Chemist at the NAV SOURCE site, but just in case I’m attaching that link here: http://www.navsource.org/archives/10/03/03048.htm

    I looked long and hard for pictures of the Leon throughout five years of research and writing All Came Home. I’d be glad to send you the best picture I have… one that my book producer touched up. It’s a good picture. If you’ll contact us through the CONTACT link at our web site (www.allcamehome.com), I’ll send an electronic copy.

    Here’s another thought. I have copies of some of the Leon’s Action Reports following her five amphibious assaults in the Pacific. Those reports sometimes contain interesting information about the army or marine units they carried during an operation. If you could tell me your Dad’s unit, I’ll research the Action Reports and search for anything that might interest you.

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  4. Mary B says:

    My dad served aboard the USS Leon and I have pictures on board and of the boat in general. What is the best way to share them?

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  5. Michael Schwind says:

    Paul, I just finished your book and really enjoyed reading about the Leon. My dad, Earl Schwind, was stationed on the Leon while he served in the Navy. He never spoke much about the war but I remember him talking about thr invasion of Saipan. I was surprised to find out about the other battles the Leon was s part of. Thanks for writing such an important history . Michael Schwind

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