By William F. Floyd, Jr. Late in the day on October 24, 1944, all of the available 39 patrol torpedo (PT) boats of the U.S. Seventh Fleet were traveling at high speed into the Mindanao Sea just south of Leyte Gulf. By dusk they had taken up position in a patrol line. The journey of the boats from New Guinea to Leyte Gulf, which was approximately 1,200 miles, presented a difficult problem for the U.S. Navy. The distance was considered too far for the boats to complete in one hop, even if they we

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