The USS Trenton was a U.S. Navy escort airplane carrier built and launched in 1942 during the Second Great War. She was a converted freighter whose superstructure had been removed and replaced with a flight deck and small starboard island. She carried 30 airplanes including divebombers, torpedo carriers and fighters. As such, her complement was about half that of a fleet carrier. Given her origins as a freighter, she couldn't do more than 18 knots as compared to a regular warship's 30.

The Trenton and her sister ship, the Chapultepec sailed for the Sandwich Islands immediately after commissioning to replace the sunken Remembrance. On their voyage, they escorted a convoy of freighters and tankers to keep the islands supplied.

Shortly after the Trenton's arrival, she went on patrol to the northwest of the islands towards Midway with a destroyer escort including the Townsend. There, her air patrol encountered an Imperial Japanese Navy airplane carrier. An air battle ensued resulting in the sinking of the Japanese carrier. The Trenton did not emerge unscathed as a Japanese fighter deliberately crashed into her flight deck. However, while damaged, she continued to sail and allow her airplanes to land and take-off giving the U.S. the advantage.

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