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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive


Contributed by Mike Smolinski

USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6)
ex
USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) (1955 - 1957)
USS Thetis Bay (CVE-90) (1944 - 1955)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Kilo - Yankee - Tango
NKYT
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons



Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Navy Expeditionary Medal (1-Cuba)
Second Row - American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal
Third Row - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp) - National Defense Service Medal - Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (1-Cuba, 3-Quemoy-Matsu, 2-Vietnam)


Thetis Bay Amphibious Assault Ship (Helicopter):
  • Laid down, 23 December 1943, as a Casablanca Class Escort Aircraft Carrier under Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 1127) at Kaiser Shipbuilding Co., Vancouver, WA.
  • Launched, 16 March 1944
  • Commissioned USS Thetis Bay (CVE-90), 21 April 1944, CAPT. Donald E. Wilcox US Navy, in command
  • During World War II USS Thetis Bay was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaign:
    Asiatic-Pacific Campaign
    Campaign and Dates
    Third Fleet operations against Japan
    10 to 18 July 1945
    25 July to 15 August 1945

  • Following World War II USS Thetis Bay CVE-90 was assigned to Occupation service in the Far East for the following periods:

    Navy Occupation Service Medal
    2 to 8 September1945
    23 to 27 November 1945
    5 to 12 January 1946

  • Decommissioned in January 1947
  • Laid up in the Pacific Reserve Fleet Tacoma, WA. Group
  • Withdrawn from Reserve Fleet for conversion to an Assault Helicopter Carrier
  • Designated Assault Helicopter Carrier (CVHA-1), 1 July 1955
  • Converted at San Francisco Naval Shipyard, Hunters Point
  • Recommissioned USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1), 1 September 1955, CAPT. Thomas W. South US Navy, in command
  • Redesignated Amphibious Assault Ship (Helicopter) (LPH-6), 28 May 1957
  • Decommissioned and struck from the Naval Register 31 March 1964
  • USS Thetis Bay (CVE-90) earned one battle star for World War II service
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping in December 1964 to Peck Iron and Metal Co., Portsmouth, VA.
    LPH Specifications:
    Displacement 7,800 t.(lt), 11,000 t.(fl)
    Length 512' 3"
    Beam 65' 2"
    Draft 22'6" (max)
    Speed 19.3 kts
    Complement 900
    Troop Accommodations 938
    Armament four twin 40mm AA gun mounts
    Propulsion
    two Skiner, Uniflow vertical triple-expansion reciprocating steam engines
    four 285 psi boilers
    one propeller 9,000shp

    Click On Image
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    Size Image Description Contributed
    By
    USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1)
    Thetis Bay 161k PCU Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) drydocked at Naval Shipyard Hunters Point while undergoing conversion from CVE-90 to CVAH-1, November 1955.
    Photo # NY1-4519-L-11-55 from the collections of NARA San Francisco, Naval Shipyard Hunters Point San Francisco CA Historic Shipyard Photographic Collection 1904-1974.
    Tracy White
    Thetis Bay 149k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) Commissioning Ceremony Program Robert M. Cieri
    Thetis Bay
    NY1-9787-L-7-56
    49k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) dockside at Naval Shipyard Hunters Point, San Francisco, CA., circa July 1956. The HUP-2 helicopter taking off was probably performing flight deck tests for the newly converted helicopter carrier.
    Photos from the collections of NARA San Francisco, Naval Shipyard Hunters Point San Francisco CA Historic Shipyard Photographic Collection 1904-1974.
    Tracy White
    Thetis Bay
    NY1-9789-L-7-56
    39k
    Thetis Bay
    MSR-10576-L-8-56
    72k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) off Naval Shipyard Hunters Point, San Francisco, CA., 15 August 1956.
    Photos from the collections of NARA San Francisco, Naval Shipyard Hunters Point San Francisco CA Historic Shipyard Photographic Collection 1904-1974.
    Tracy White
    Thetis Bay
    MSR-10573-L-8-56
    76k
    Thetis Bay 48k Stern view of USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) off Naval Shipyard Hunters Point, San Francisco, CA., 15 August 1956.
    Photos from the collections of NARA San Francisco, Naval Shipyard Hunters Point San Francisco CA Historic Shipyard Photographic Collection 1904-1974.
    Gerd Matthes
    Thetis Bay 345k Port stern quarter view of USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) off Naval Shipyard Hunters Point, San Francisco, CA., 15 August 1956.
    Photos from the collections of NARA San Francisco, Naval Shipyard Hunters Point San Francisco CA Historic Shipyard Photographic Collection 1904-1974.
    Gerd Matthes
    Thetis Bay 79k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) underway, probably in San Francisco Bay, 15 August 1956.
    Photo # MSR-10575-L-8-56 (August 15 1956) from the collections of NARA San Francisco, Naval Shipyard Hunters Point San Francisco CA Historic Shipyard Photographic Collection 1904-1974.
    Tracy White
    Thetis Bay 247k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) underway at slow speed, 17 November 1956, location unknown.
    US Navy photo # NH 106713 from the collections of the US Naval History and Heritage Command.
    Robert Hurst
    Thetis Bay 259k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) out bound to sea from San Diego, CA., 17 November 1956. Gerd Matthes
    Thetis Bay 80k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) underway, circa 1955-56.
    US Navy photo from "All Hands" magazine, December 1959 issue
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret.
    Thetis Bay 112k Overhead view of USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) underway, circa 1956, location unknown.
    US Navy photo
    Robert Hurst
    Thetis Bay 60k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) at anchor, 1 April 1958, location unknown.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 85100.
    Scott Koen
    Thetis Bay 675k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) underway in San Francisco Bay returning to her homeport, NAS Alameda.
    US Navy photo # 80-G-697976.
    Scott Koen
    Thetis Bay 460k USS Thetis Bay (CVHA-1) at anchor off Okinawa, date unknown. Thetis Bay has her Marine HUS helicopters (with rotors folded back) and a Navy "HUP-mobile" on her deck.
    US Navy photo from "Aircraft Carriers" by Norman Polmar.
    Robert Hurst
    USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6)
    LPH-6 Thetis Bay 11k

    USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6) off Luzon, Philippine Islands,February. 1958, during vertical envelopment exercises with Marine Corps Test Unit 1

    Charles Zarek
    Sgt. USMC 1956-1958
    7th Comm BTN, 1st MAR DIV
    LPH-6 Thetis Bay 5k
    LPH-6 Thetis Bay 10k
    LPH-6 Thetis Bay 13k
    Thetis Bay 49k USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6), underway, circa 1979, location unknown. Note her complement of Sikorsky HRS troop-carrying helicopters aft and some of her crew lined up on deck.
    Photo by Hajime Fukaya, photo and text from "Jane's Fighting Ships" 1961-62.
    Robert Hurst
    Thetis Bay 84k USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6) underway, sometime between May 1959 (when she was redesignated (LPH-6) and December 1961 when she was redeployed to the Atlantic Fleet and arrived at Norfolk), She has aboard Marine Squadron HMRL-163, ("YP" tail code) a Pacific Fleet squadron which became HMM-163 in February 1962.
    US Navy photo.
    Robert M. Cieri
    Thetis Bay 91k USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6) moored pierside at Naval Station, San Diego, CA., May 1960. Photo taken from USS Kearsarge (CVS-33). Photo by Gary R Schreffler
    Thetis Bay 524k Aerial view of USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6) arriving at Portland, OR. for the Rose Festival, 5 June 1960. Gerd Matthes
    Thetis Bay 633k USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6) underway, circa 1963, location unknown.
    US Navy photo from the Navy National Museum of Naval Aviation, Robert L. Lawton Photograph Collection, Photo # 1996.488.034.012.
    Robert Hurst
    Thetis Bay 320k USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6) arriving at Hamburg, Germany in the spring of 1963. LPH-6 was carrying special aircraft required for President John F. Kennedy's visit to Germany in June, 1963. Gerhard Mueller-Debus
    Thetis Bay 421k USS Thetis Bay (LPH-6) moored at Hamburg, Germany in the spring of 1963 during President Kennedy's visit to Germany. Gerd Matthes

    View the US Thetis Bay (LPH-6 / CVHA-1 / CVE-90)
    DANFS history entry located at the US Naval Historical Center
    Commanding Officers
    01CAPT. South II, Thomas Winfield ;RADM20 July 1956 - 19 April 1957
    02CAPT. Compton, James Richard19 April 1957 - 29 May 1958
    03CAPT. Gillette Jr., Norman Campbell ;RADM29 May 1958 - 25 March 1959
    04CAPT. Gibson, Charles Edward25 March 1959 - 25 April 1960
    05CAPT. Houck, Herbert Norman25 April 1960 - 17 February 1961
    06CAPT. Curtis Jr., Walter L. ;VADM 17 February 1961 - 18 February 1962
    07CAPT. Epes Jr., Horace Hardaway ;RADM 18 February 1961 - 30 March 1963
    08CAPT. Hanley Jr., Michael Joseph30 March 1963 - 20 February 1964
    09CAPT. Dumas, Glenn Irven20 February 1964 - 31 March 1964
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 2 August 2013