About PTboatRed

The continuing story of my exploration of my father, George “Red” Stahley, and his time as a PT boat sailor in the US Navy during WWII.  The blog reveals what I have discovered from former friends and crew mates of my father, what I have learned about the history of the Navy’s “Mosquito Fleet,” and insights I have gained about the WWII PT service of President John F. Kennedy, the skipper of PT 109.


  1. I like reading your WordPress blog Stephen. I bet many folks read it without making a comment.

    • Nancy,

      I appreciate your ongoing support. It’s good to know that you’re enjoying the blog. Your comments are always welcome.


  2. There are two members of PT 540 left today (Nov 2013) One in Florida and one in ND. Memories.

    • Bill,

      We’re certainly glad that they’re still with us and we pay them special tribute on this Veterans Day!


  3. My name is Edward Kelso. The fellow in the picture with Red is my Uncle Slick Kelso

    • Edward,
      Thanks so much for your comment. We’ve wondered for years about the identity of that sailor with Red–they seem to be good friends. Can you tell us a bit more about your uncle–where was he from? did he tell you or your family anything about his PT days?
      It’s great to have a full name to go with the picture.
      Thanks again,
      Steve Stahley

      • His full name was Haywood Francis Kelso. He was from the Atlanta area and worked as an engineer with the state of Georgia Highway Department.

        He told of a story in which they had been using depth chargers from their PT boat on “Jap subs” night after night. A sub captain eventually got smart and lay in wait for the PT boat at night with lights out, and silent.. Then the sub suddenly shined lights on the PT boat and it was fired upon. They barely escaped by turning in a hail of fire. He said that “Plywood was going every where! We may as well been using the Atlanta Sunday paper for cover!”

        I always enjoyed his smile! He is no longer with us I am sad to report.

        Thank You for this opportunity to share.

        Edward Kelso

      • Edward, Thanks again. I love that story about the Japanese submarine and the narrow escape by the PT. I wonder if my father was aboard that night? I’ll bet Red and Slick enjoyed each other’s company. Steve

  4. Stephen,

    I’ve taken the liberty to post your blog on the North Catholic Grads Facebook page. I am a NC grad & appreciate your blog since I enjoy personal narratives from WWII. Thanks!


    • Thanks very much for making the connection with the North Catholic Facebook page. It’s always great to team up with the Falcons! My father was extremely proud of his NC diploma and his connection to the school.

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