USS Welch PG-93/ ARC Alburquerque 111


WELCH participated in several successful patrols in Vietnam during 1971 and 1972 and was subsequently transferred to Guam. In 1974, the ship was transferred to Little Creek, VA and attached to Coastal River Squadron 2. The year 1976 found the USS WELCH (PG-93) dedicated full time to the Royal Saudi Arabian Naval Forces On-the-Job Training program. This OJT Program task the ship with providing Saudi Arabian trainees, from recruits to officers, with exposure to routine shipboard life in their designated ratings. Each enlisted trainee is assigned to the ship for a period of sixteen weeks and is expected to obtain, within his rating, the level of expertise normally exhibited by a third class petty officer in the U.S. Navy. Officers are assigned for a period of six months and are expected to become proficient ship handlers as well as knowledgeable in their areas of expertise. To meet these training goals, the ship has been tasked with at least thirty underway days and one prolonged TAV or upkeep period of three weeks each quarter. Also, as a result of this program, the WELCH's manning has been decreased by two, to twenty-four enlisted personnel and four officers. The constraints of the OJT program require that the ship accept all trainees provided up to a maximum of fifteen. Even with the addition of eight temporary bunks, the addition of fifteen Saudi Arabian trainees to the crew has required that the ship leave at least five USN crew members behind on most prolonged cruises. This reduction in USN crew members has necessitated that the Saudi Arabian trainees substitute for the missing USN crew members. Thus far, the trainees have accomplished all tasks assigned in excellent fashion, and, in most cases considered excellent watch standers.

Second US Navy ship to bear the name and is named for Welch, West Virginia. Commissioned 8 September 1969 at Boston MA and decommissioned 20 September 1981 at Little Creek VA.  Transferred to the Colombian Navy in  1983.  Stricken from US Naval Vessel Register 12 April 1995 in Colombian custody.