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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive

Sunk by accidental fire and explosion, 18 August 1943

USS LST-396


Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons


Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Navy Unit Commendation
Bottom Row - American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal

LST-1 Class Tank Landing Ship:
  • Laid down, 28 September 1942, at Newport News Shipbuilding and Drydock Co., Newport News, VA.
  • Launched, 23 November 1942
  • Commissioned USS LST-396, 23 December 1942, LT. Eric. W. White, USN, in command
  • During World War II USS LST-396 was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaigns:

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaigns
    Campaign and Dates
    New Georgia Group operation
    New Georgia-Rendova-Vangunu occupation, 1 July 1943
    Vella Lavella occupation, 17 and 18 August 1943

  • Sunk by accidental fire and explosion off the Solomon Islands, 18 August 1943
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 3 September 1943
  • USS LST-396 earned one battle star for World War II service
    Specifications:
    Displacement
    1,625 t.(lt)
    4,080 t.(fl) (sea-going draft w/1675 ton load)
    2,366 t. (beaching displacement)
    Length 328' o.a.
    Beam 50'
    Draft
    light 2' 4" fwd, 7' 6" aft
    sea-going 8' 3" fwd, 14' 1" aft
    landing 3' 11" fwd, 9' 10" aft (landing w/500 ton load)
    limiting 11' 2"
    maximum navigation 14' 1"
    Speed 11.6 kts. (trial)
    Endurance 24,000 miles @ 9kts. while displacing 3960 tons
    Complement
    13 officers
    104 enlisted
    Troop Accommodations
    16 officers
    147 enlisted
    Boats 2 LCVP
    Cargo Capacity (varied with mission - payloads between 1600 and 1900 tons)
    Typical loads
    One Landing Craft Tank (LCT), tanks, wheeled and tracked vehicles, artillery, construction equipment and military supplies. A ramp or elevator forward allowed vehicles access to tank deck from main deck
    Additional capacity included sectional pontoons carried on each side of vessel amidships, to either build Rhino Barges or use as causeways. Married to the bow ramp, the causeways would enabled payloads to be delivered ashore from deeper water or where a beachhead would not allow the vessel to be grounded forward after ballasting
    Armament (varied with availability when each vessel was outfitted. Retro-fitting was accomplished throughout WWII. The ultimate armament design for United States vessels was
    2 - Twin 40MM gun mounts w/Mk. 51 directors
    4 - Single 40MM gun mounts
    12 single 20MM gun mounts
    Fuel Capacity
    Diesel 4,300 Bbls
    Propulsion
    two General Motors 12-567A, 900hp Diesel engines
    single Falk Main Reduction Gears
    three Diesel-drive 100Kw 230V D.C. Ship's Service Generators
    two propellers, 1,700shp
    twin rudders

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Source
    LST-396 57k USS LST-396 unloads M3 halftracks across a coral causeway, making the pontoons on her sides unnecessary. She is spot-painted in an effort to protect chipped off rust spots. The pontoons were typically battered, rusted, and scarred from hard use. The hull number is in black 2ft figures.
    Photo and text from "Landing Ship Tank (LST) 1942-2002" by Gordon L. Rottman.
    Robert Hurst

    USS LST-396
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LT. White, Eric Walter, USNR23 December 1942 - 18 August 1943
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

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

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    The USS LST Ship Memorial
    LST Home Port
    State LST Chapters
    United States LST Association
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To The Amphibious Ship Type Index Back To The Tank Landing Ship (LST) Photo Index
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    This page is created by David W. Almond and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 22 August 2014