Cowie (DMS 39), flagship of MinRon 21 in 1945.
Mine Squadron 21
May 1945
Mine Division 61
USS Mervine, DMS 31, flag
USS Quick, DMS 32
USS Davison, DMS 37
USS Thompson, DMS 38
Mine Division 62
USS Cowie, DMS 39,
squadron flag
USS Knight, DMS 40
USS Doran, DMS 41
USS Earle, DMS 42
Mine Division 63
USS Carmick, DMS 33, flag
USS Doyle, DMS 34
USS Endicott, DMS 35
USS McCook, DMS 36

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USS Quick (DMS 32) USS McCook (DMS 36) USS Davison (DMS 37) USS Thompson (DMS 38) USS Cowie (DMS 39)
The second of two squadrons of fast minesweepers formed at the end of World War II was Mine Squadron 21. As in the case of Mine Squadron 20 in late 1944, twelve Gleaves-class 1,630-tonners were taken in hand for modification in 1945—DesRon 15’s Mervine, Quick, Davison and DesDiv 30 ( Cowie, Knight, Doran and Earle) plus DesRon 18’s Thompson and DesDiv 35 (Carmick, Doyle, Endicott and McCook). Cowie, the first ship converted, became squadron flagship on rejoining the fleet in June 1945. The others began joining the squadron in San Diego during the summer.

Had the war continued past August, MinRon 21 would’ve seen action and likely played a leading role—possibly sustaining heavy losses—in the invasion of Japan, which was scheduled to begin in November. Instead, they conducted post-war minesweeping operations in Japanese and other western Pacific waters.

After returning home, although the squadron was disbanded, the ships remained in commission and thus were available to serve in the Korean War, where Carmick and Thompson each earned the Navy Unit Commendation.