Phil Potter was the skipper of PT 169. His boat had become detached from the second group of PTs who went on on patrol with Kennedy of August 1, 1943 and met up with PT 109 and PT 162 and had radio contact discussing the update of events on that confusing night that JFK’s boat was rammed by a Japanese destroyer.
After the other boats in the squadron had turned back to base, the three boats coordinated in patrolling in a back and forth sweep to try to intercept the Japanese destroyers returning to home base. Potter was able to spot the Amagiri steaming for the 109 and radioed Kennedy’s boat about the imminent collision but did not get a response. Potter later reported he had a clear view of the collision and saw the explosion and men running around on deck.
After allowing for time for the Japanese destroyer to clear the PT 109 collision area, Potter fired two torpedos and then ran for the sheltering backside of the a nearby island, not realizing that the Amagiri was the last of the Japanese destroyers to travel that Blackett Strait that night. Before heading back to base, Potter later recorded that he went to the site of the approximate collision to look for survivors. After searching for a couple of hours, he returned to base as the end of darkness neared.
[3, p. 563 – 571]