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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive

Lost to enemy action, 5 December 1944

USS LSM-20


International Radio Call Sign:
November - Victor - Bravo - Mike
NVBM
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons


Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Combat Action Ribbon (retroactive - Surigao Strait, 5 December 1944_ - American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1)
Bottom Row - World War II Victory Medal - Philippines Presidential Unit Citation - Philippines Liberation Medal (1)

Individual Awards

Purple Heart, (5 KIA, 9 wounded - 5 December 1944, Surigao Strait)

LSM-1 Class Landing Ship Medium:
  • Laid down, 24 April 1944, at Brown Shipbuilding Co., Houston TX.
  • Launched, 14 May 1944
  • Commissioned USS LSM-20, 17 June 1944, ENS. John R. Bradley, USN in command
  • During World War II LSM-20 was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the in the following campaign:

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaigns
    Campaign and Dates
    Leyte operation
    Leyte landing, 13 October to 29 November 1944
  • Final Disposition, sunk, 5 December 1944, after being hit by a Japanese Kamikaze plane in Surigao Strait, P.I.
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 20 January 1945
  • USS LSM-20 earned one battle star for World War II service
    Specifications:
    Displacement 520 t.(light), 743 t. (landing) 1,095 t.(fully loaded)
    Length 203' 6" (ovl)
    Beam 34' 6"
    Draft
    light, 3' 6" forward, 7' 8" aft
    fully loaded, 6' 4" forward, 8' 3" aft
    Speed 13.2 kts. (max.), (928 tons displacement)
    Complement
    5 officers
    54 enlisted
    Armament
    one twin bow mounted 40mm gun
    four single 20mm gun mounts
    Vehicle/Boat Capacity 5 medium or 3 heavy tanks, or 6 LVT's, or 9 DUKW's
    Fuel Capacity
    Diesel 1,225 Bbls
    Troop Accommodations
    2 officers
    46 enlisted
    Armor 10-lb. STS splinter shield to gun mounts, pilot house and conning station
    Endurance 4,900 miles @ 12kts.(928 tons displacement)
    Propulsion
    two Fairbanks Morse (model 38D81/8X10, reversible with hydraulic clutch) Diesel engines, direct drive with 1,440 BHP each @ 720rpm
    Ship's Service Generators
    two Diesel-drive 100Kw 450V A.C.
    one Diesel-drive 20Kw 120V D.C.
    twin propellers, 2,800shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    By
    LSM-20 141k USS LSM-20 under way, 16 June 1944, in the Gulf of Mexico. Photo by a blimp from Lighter-Than-Air Squadron (ZP-22) assigned to NAS Houma, LA.
    US National Archives photo # 80-G-271390a, a US Navy photo now in the collections of the US National Archives II, College Park, MD.
    Tracy White
    LSM-20 48k USS LSM-20 approaching a beachhead, date and location unknown. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-20 50k USS LSM-20 beached, date and location unknown. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-20 37k USS LSM-20 down at the stern after being hit by a bomb laden Japanese Kamikaze, 5 December 1944. The plane struck the ship just aft of the conning tower about 3 feet above the waterline. The bombs exploded in the engine room causing fire and flooding. LSM-20 would sink in 20 minutes with the loss of eight enlisted men and the wounding of two officers and seven enlisted men. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-20 64k USS LSM-20's stern is awash and water is flooding the well deck after the Kamikaze attack at Surigao Strait, 5 December 1944. USS LCI(G)-1017 is off her port side attempting to rescue LSM-20 crew members. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-20 72k USS LSM-20 sinking stern first after the Kamikaze attack at Surigao Strait, 5 December 1944. Several crew members are still aboard, one can be seen on the port side and another on the starboard side clinging to the life lines. USS LCI(G)-1017 is visible off LSM-20 port side as she stands by to rescue the LSMs' crew. Photo was taken from a second LCI laying off her starboard side. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-20 59k USS LSM-20 standing on her stern as she sinks from the Kamikaze attack at Surigao Strait, 5 December 1944. Note that the crewman on the port side in the above photo has jumped and is under the water just a few feet from were he was standing, while the crewmen who was on the starboard side can be seen in the water. Note the helmet falling from the 40mm gun director tub. USS LCI(G)-1017 is still off LSM-20's port side. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-20 58k USS LSM-20 standing on her stern as she sinks from the Kamikaze attack at Surigao Strait, 5 December 1944. Note there are still crewmen in the water as USS LCI(G)-1017 and a second LCI continue to standby attempting to rescue remaining crew members in the water. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-20 54k USS LSM-20 standing on her stern as she sinks from the Kamikaze attack at Surigao Strait, 5 December 1944. Note she is almost totally submerged while rescue attempts continue from the LCIs alongside. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-20 56k USS LSM-20 standing on her stern as she sinks from the Kamikaze attack at Surigao Strait, 5 December 1944. Note at least ten men are visible in the water in this photo, three off the starboard side and seven off her port side as rescue attempts continue by the LCIs. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-20 46k USS LSM-20 almost totally submerged. Only her bow doors are above water after sinking from the Kamikaze attack at Surigao Strait, 5 December 1944. USS LCI(G)-1017 is visible in the distance. USS LSM / LSMR Association

    The history extract for USS LSM-20 is from LSM-LSMR Amphibious Forces, Vol. II. Paducah, Kentucky: Turner Publishing Company, © 1997. (ISBN 1-56311-389-9).
    Commanding Officers
    01ENS. Bradley John R., USN17 June 1944 - ?

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log
    USS LSM-LSMR Association
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last updated 12 May 2017