Lt. H. L. Smith, Commanding Officer

The LCS 57 was commissioned on the 30th of October 1944, at Portland, Oregon, having been built by the Albina Engine and Machine Works. On November 11, 1944 she left Portland in company with LCSs 43 and 44 enroute to San Diego, arriving there on 15 November. No time was allotted the ship for the usual shakedown cruise, and the ship was immediately placed in availability. After one day in drydock the ship was taken out of availability on November 29. One day was allowed to test-fire guns and make full power runs. On December 1, 1944, LCS 57 got underway with 13 other LCSs of Flotilla Three, with Captain T.C. Aylward, Commander LCS Flotilla Three, enroute to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

The ship arrived at Pearl Harbor on 11 December, remaining in West Loch until 20 December. On that date she proceeded to Maui Island, Hawaii, for training maneuvers with eight LCSs, under Lt. Commander F. P. Stone, Commander of LCS Group Seven. After a week of intensive exercises involving shore bombardment on Kahoolawe Island, target practice and drills, she returned to Pearl Harbor on December 26th and was granted availability on December 31st in Kewalo Basin. Availability terminated 6 January 1945, at which time the ship returned to Pearl Harbor, where she remained until 10 January, when she was ordered to Nawiliwili Harbor, Kaui, Hawaii, to act as an escort to ships of LCT Flotilla Twenty Three, and for the next two weeks most of the time was spent in individual practice tactics, navigation and gunnery. The ship returned to Pearl Harbor on 25 January, where she remained until 3 February.

On 3 February the 57 got underway for the Western Pacific as escort to LCT Flotilla Twenty Three (36 ships) in a convoy of approximately fifty ships made up of LCTs, LSMs, LCSs and CSs. The convoy proceeded at 6 knots, arriving at Johnston Island on 9 February, Majuro Atoll on 19 February, and Eniwetok Atoll on 25 February. Here the convoy was dissolved and ships of the LCS Group Nine under Lt. Commander B. Thirkield, proceeded with a ten-knot convoy on 28 February to Ulithi Atoll, arriving on March 6th. Ships of LCS Group Nine proceeded alone on 7 March to San Pedro Bay, Philippine Islands, arriving 11 March. Here the ships participated for two weeks in invasion tactics preparatory to the invasion of Okinawa.

After completing logistics the ship got underway with a tractor group composed of LCTs, LCSs and LCIs on March 25th, proceeding to Okinawa. On April 1st the ships arrived at Okinawa and participated that date in the invasion under Vice Admiral R.K. Turner. The ship participated in its first action in the extreme southern end of the western beaches bombarding the coast in close-invasion tactics with six ships of LCS Group Nine under Lt. Commander B. Thirkield. No return fire was encountered. Until 4 April the ship acted as a smoke screen boat along the Western Beaches of Okinawa under almost constant alert conditions. Having developed a serious screw vibration, availability was requested and granted as of April 4th, when the ship then proceeded to Kerama Retto for repairs. During the next four days the ship remained at Kerama Retto witnessing various heavy air attacks on the harbor. After a day in drydock the ship returned to the Western Beaches off Okinawa on 8 April.

On 9 April the 57 was ordered to act as close support radar picket to Cassin Young (DD-793) at a station off Iheya Shima, about sixty miles north of the Western Beaches of Okinawa. At 1 A.M. on 10 April after a four-hour search by both vessels, the 57 sighted and rescued 2nd Lt. C.H. Coppedge, USMC, a pilot who had crashed near Iheya Shima. Uneventful patrol continued for three days, in company with Purdy (DD-734), LCSs 33, 114 and 115.

At noon on 12 April the station was attacked by approximately 25 Japanese suicide planes. The ship at the time was about five miles from any other ships and was attacked by eight planes. The 57 shot down four planes and accounted for three others which hit or damaged the ship. Five planes in all dived on the ship. Personnel casualties suffered were two dead, four wounded and four injured, the latter suffering from bullet wounds and burns. Serious fires were started near the after magazine, and a ten foot hole extending below the waterline was blown in the port quarter, and over half of the ship was flooded on the second deck. All main batteries’ guns were damaged or demolished and electrical equipment, steering, pumps, etc. were badly damaged. During the battle both destroyers were hit and returned to port. The LCS 33 was sunk close aboard. With survivors of the LCS 33 this ship, escorted by the LCSs 114 and 115, proceeded to the Western Beaches off Okinawa undergoing a night air attack and arriving at midnight.

On 13 April the ship was escorted to Kerama Retto for repairs. There it remained until 28 May awaiting drydock facilities for repairs. During this period various suicide airplane attacks were made on the harbor, but with ordnance equipment badly damaged, the ship at no time opened fire. She was stripped of a good deal of vital equipment, including the mast, radio and radar equipment, pumps, etc. Tentative repairs were commenced on 19 May, and sufficiently completed by the 26th of May to allow a trip to Leyte for further repairs. During May the ship was assigned to LCS Group Seven under Lt. Commander F. P. Stone. On 28 May the 57 got underway from Kerama Retto enroute to Leyte in a 6-knot convoy of ten ships, arriving San Pedro Bay, Philippine Islands, on 3 June.

The 57 remained in availability for the next two and a half months, including four days in drydock, and although full repairs had not been completed and a good deal of equipment was still not installed, the ship was taken out of availability shortly after the war ended. After logistics were completed the ship left for Wakayama, Japan on 17 September, in company with ships of LCS Group Seven. Making a brief stop at Buckner Bay, Okinawa on 21 September, the group arrived on 25 September at Wakayama.

Other than acting on anchored picket stations or on anti-suicide boat stations, no specific duties were required of the group at this harbor. For the most part the 57 remained at anchor for about a month. On the 12th of October she was presented with the Presidential Unit Citation for conduct in action against the suicide planes at Okinawa. The presentation was made by Vice Admiral Oldendorf in a joint ceremony in which the LCS 51 received the same award. On 24 October the 57 got underway with half the group, proceeding to Nagoya, Japan, arriving on 25 October. No specific duties were assigned to the ship, which remained moored for the most part until 13 November, at which time she departed with six LCSs of Group Seven for Jinsen, Korea. The unit arrived on 18 November, reporting to the Commander of Task Force 71, the group having been assigned to the Seventh Fleet. On 20 November the 57 was order to Kunsan, Korea, to take harbor soundings with LCS 28, both ships returning to Jinsen on 22 November.

takes pleasure in presenting the
to the
For services set forth in the following citation:
"For extraordinary heroism in action during an attack by enemy Japanese suicide planes north of Okinawa Jima 16 April 1945, promptly opening fire on the first two hostile planes which penetrated our aircraft screen and plunged in suicide dives on our concentration of ships, the USS LCS(L) 57 maintained a steady barrage from her anti-aircraft guns despite continued enemy strafing, and destroyed the targets by her accuracy and intense fire. Quickly disposing of two other planes orbiting preparatory to making an attack, she turned her guns on a fifth as it came in low from the port quarter and exploded close aboard. With two 40mm guns out of action, the steering gear damaged, and lighting and internal communications disrupted by the concussion, the LCS(L) 57 disposed of the sixth Japanese aircraft before it could complete its dive. Suffering additional severe damage and further casualties by the seventh hostile plane which crashed into the forward part of the ship, the LCS(L) 57 gallantly remained in the action, brought all fires under control, and checked the water rushing into the hole eight feet wide below the water line, fighting resolutely until the last of the twenty six planes in the Japanese formation had been destroyed or routed. Her sturdy and valiant service under a relentless and prolonged suicide bombing attack contributed to the effective defense of our ships, and reflects the highest credit upon the USS LCS(L) 57, her courageous officers and men and the United States Naval Service."

For the President,
Secretary of the Navy

LCS 57 was placed out of commission on August 20, 1946, at Green Cove Springs, Florida, and assigned to the Atlantic Fleet.

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