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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive


Painting by Rev. Joel Osborne
Lost due to enemy action, 6 June 1944 at Omaha Beach

USS LCI(L)-85


USS LCI(L)-85 was manned by the US Coast Guard
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons


Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Combat Action Ribbon (retroactive) - Coast Guard Unit Commendation
Bottom Row - American Campaign Medal - Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal (4) - World War II Victory Medal

Individual Awards

Silver Stars - LTjg Coit T. Hendley CO LCI 85 - Gene Oxley S2/c CG Press Release
Bronze Star - LTjg Arthur Farrar XO LCI 85
Purple Hearts - 5 WIA, Normandy - LTjg. Arthur Farrar, (XO) - Charles O. McWhirter, CQM - Alfred E. Hahn S2/c - Gordon R. Arneberg RM3/C - George Lott Jr. SM

Landing Craft Infantry (Large):
  • Laid down in October 1942 at Consolidated Steel Corp., Orange, TX.
  • Launched in 1943
  • Commissioned USS LCI(L)-85, with a Coast Guard crew, 26 January 1943, LTjg. Coit Hendley, USCGR, in command
  • During WWII USS LCI(L)-85 was assigned to the Europe-Africa-Middle East Theater:
    LCI Flotilla Four and
    LCI Flotilla Ten
    LCI Group Twenty-Nine
    LCI Division Fifty-Seven and participated in the following campaigns:

    Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaigns
    Campaign and Dates Campaign and Dates
    North African occupation
    Tunisian operations, 1 June to 9 July 1943
    Salerno landings, 9 to 21 September 1943
    Sicilian occupation, 9 to 15 July 1943 Invasion of Normandy, 6 June 1944

  • Final Disposition, sunk by enemy action at Normandy on D-Day, 6 June 1944
  • Struck from the Naval Register, date unknown
  • USS LCI(L)-85 earned four battle stars and the Coast Guard Unit Commendation for World War II service
    Specifications:
    Displacement 236 t.(light), 264 t.(landing), 419 t.(loaded)
    Length 158' 5½"
    Beam 23' 3"
    Draft
    Light, 3'1½" mean
    Landing, 2' 8" forward, 4' 10" aft
    Loaded, 5' 4" forward, 5' 11" aft
    Speed
    16 kts (max.)
    14 kts maximum continuous
    Complement
    4 officers
    24 enlisted
    Troop Capacity
    6 officers
    182 enlisted
    Cargo Capacity 75 tons
    Armor 2" plastic splinter protection on gun turrets, conning tower and pilot house
    Endurance 4,000 miles at 12 kts, loaded, 500 miles at 15 knots; and 110 tons of fuel
    Armament
    five single 20mm guns, one bow mounted, one each port and starboard forward of wheelhouse, one each port and starboard aft of wheelhouse
    on some LCIs two .50 cal machine guns were added
    Fuel Capacity
    Diesel 860 Bbls
    lube oil 200 gal
    Propulsion
    two sets of 4 General Motors 6051 series 71 Diesel engines, 4 per shaft
    single General Motors Main reduction gears
    two Diesel-drive 30Kw 120V D.C. Ship's Service Generators
    twin variable pitch propellers, 2,320shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    LCI(L)-85 71k USS LCI(L)-85 number two 20mm gun crew at anti-aircraft practice. Note the "Charlie Noble" smoke exhaust stack disassembled to give a free field of fire. Photo from the USS LCI National Association's newsletter "The Elsie Item", January 2007 issue Ardie Hunt
    LCI(L)-14 94k USS LCI(L)-85 along with the rest of LCI Flotillas Two and Four ready to sail from North Africa with the Third Infantry Division. Bill Brinkley
    LCI(L)-85 71k USS LCI(L)-85 with USS LCI(L)-229 in the foreground and USS LCI(L)-322 in the background, moored at Bizerte, Tunisia, date unknown. Valerie Vierk for her father Herbert Nolda USS LCI(L)-85 and USS LCI(L)-92
    LCI(L)-93 73k USS LCI(L)-93 and USS LCI(L)-85, USS LCI(L)-92, USS LCI(L)-84 and USS LCI(L)-349 moored pierside and forward of two unidentified transports at the Pig Iron Battle Fleet Site, Oran, Algeria, October 1943.
    Photo by John R Smith Jr. USS LCI(L)-90.
    Robert G. Morrissey
    LCI(L)-85 32k USS LCI(L)-85 during a practice landing at Slapton Sands, UK
    USCG photo, date unknown.
    US Coast Guard Historian's Office Web Site
    LCI(L)-87 75k From right to left:USS LCI(L)-87, USS LCI(L)-85 and USS LCI(L)-319 nested at anchor, prior to the Normandy Invasion, date and location unknown.
    US Coast Guard
    Robert Morrissey
    LCI(L)-85 73k USS LCI(L)-85 underway in rough weather, date and location unknown. Bill Brinkley
    LCI(L)-496 146k USS LCI(L)-496, USS LCI(L)-85, USS LCI(L)-88, USS LCI(L)-90, USS LCI(L)-92, and USS LCI(L)-491, prepare for the Invasion of Normandy while in an English port, circa 5 June 1944.
    Images are from the DVD "D-Day Code Name: Overlord" with the permission of Denver Collins, Editor, Timeless Media Group, Eugene OR.
    Robert Morrissey
    LCI(L)-496 117k
    LCI(L)-492 250k USS LCI(L)-85 USS LCI(L)-83, USS LCI(L)-492 and USS LCI(L)-89 in a British port while loading troops for D-Day (Normandy), circa 4-5 June 1944.
    Photo from USS LCI National Association's newsletter "The Elsie Item", March 2010 issue
    Ardie Hunt
    LCI(L)-85 112k USS LCI(L)-85 battered by enemy fire after approaching Omaha Beach, prepares to evacuate her troops to USS Samuel Chase (APA-26). LCI(L)-85) sank shortly after this photograph was taken. USS LCI(L)-85 was one of four Coast Guard LCI's that were destroyed on D-Day.
    USCG photo.
    US Coast Guard Historian's Office Web Site
    LCI(L)-85 146k USS LCI(L)-85 listing after hitting a mine and taking 25 German artillery hits on Omaha Beach on "D-Day", 6 June 1944 at Normandy. She is coming alongside USS Samuel Chase (APA-26) to evacuate her crew. A short time later she capsized and sank. Note wartime censors have painted out the landing craft's number.
    US National Archives photo # 26-G-06-10-44(4) a US Coast Guard photo in from the US Coast Guard collection at the US National Archives.
    Photo courtesy Elmer Carmichael BM2/c and the US Navy Historical Center
    LCI(L)-85 143k The mortally damaged USS LCI(L)-85, her decks littered with the dead, lays alongside the attack transport USS Samuel Chase (APA-26). Her crew managed to disembark the survivors before sinking. Note how the censor scratched off the dead soldier's face. Also note binoculars atop a chart in the LCI(L)'s conning tower (upper right) and life raft (at left) with paddles secured to its side.
    US Coast Guard Collection in the U.S. National Archives. Photo #: 26-G-2344
    Robert Hurst
    LCI(L)-85 66k Another view of the listing and sinking USS LCI(L)-85, alongside the attack transport USS Samuel Chase (APA-26) just before she sank.
    USCG photo 220-18.
    John H. Kellers GM3/c USS LCT-539

    The history for USS LCI(L)-85 is from USS LCI "Landing Craft Infantry", Vol. II. Paducah, Kentucky: Turner Publishing Company, © 1995. (ISBN 1-56311-262-0)
    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    USS Landing Craft Infantry National Association
    U.S. Coast Guard Historian's Office - USS LCI(L)-85
    Coast Guard Press Release "Indianapolis Coast Guardsman has three ships shot out from under him in one morning -- and loses only seat of pants"
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To The Amphibious Ship Type Index Back To The Landing Craft Infantry (LCI) Photo Index
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 29 August 2014