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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive


International Radio Call Sign:
November - Delta - Xray - Hotel
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from left to right
American Campaign Medal - European-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal

USS LST-503 was transferred the Republic of China, named ROCS Chung Kuang (LST-216)
LST-491 Class Tank Landing Ship:
  • Laid down, 29 July 1943, at Missouri Valley Bridge and Iron Co., Evansville, IN.
  • Launched, 8 October 1943
  • Commissioned USS LST-503, 8 December 1943, LT. Sam H. Jones, USNR, in command
  • During World War II USS LST-503 was assigned to the European Theater and participated in the following campaign:

    Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign
    Campaign and Dates
    Invasion of Normandy, 6 to 25 June 1944
    "On June 6, 1944 at about 12:01 A.M. the LST-503 departed the English Channel and headed for Normandy, Gold Beach. At about 2:00 P.M. on June 6, 1944 the LST-503 was approximately 6 kilometers from Gold beach. At this time, Lt. Seiwert left the LST-503 with six LCVP boats and a compliment of four crewmen per boat to assist in unloading English troops and equipment from cargo ships that had arrived earlier in the day and were anchored closer to Gold Beach.
    Between June and August of 1944 the LST-503 continued to ferry men and materials across the English Channel to Normandy. After General George S. Patton and his 3rd Army secured the port of Cherbourg about September 1, 1944 the small LCVP boats were no longer used and Lieutenant Seiwert and his boat crews returned to the LST-503 and became part of her crew. From about Sept 1, 1944 to November 1, 1944 the LST-503 made approximately 20 additional crossings of the English Channel transporting men and materials to the allies in Normandy. About November 1, 1944, Lieutenant Seiwert was transferred off the LST-503 with three LCVP boats and a compliment of four men of his choosing per boat. Lieutenant Seiwert’s LCVP boat crews joined LCVP Unit 2 for the crossing of the Rhine River in April of 1945 by General Patton’s 3rd Army. On about May 1, 1945 after the Rhine River crossing mission was completed Lieutenant Seiwert and his boat crew members proceeded to La Harve for further transport back to the United States. After arrival at La Harve we were surprised to learn that the LST-503 would provide the transportation stateside back to Southampton."
    LT. Hilbert H.N. Seiwert, USNR, Retired USS LST-503 Boat Officer
  • Decommissioned, 11 June 1946
  • Laid up in reserve in Atlantic Reserve Fleet, Green Cove Springs, FL.
  • Recommissioned, 9 January 1951, homeported at NAB Little Creek, VA.
  • Assigned to Operation "Blue Bird" (Greenland) August 1951
  • Decommissioned, and transferred to the Republic of China, 4 April 1955, named ROCS Chung Kuang (LST-216)
  • USS LST-503 earned one battle star for World War II service
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 25 April 1960
  • Decommissioned, by the Republic of China, 16 February 2009, during a ceremony at Kaohsiung Harbor, Taiwan.
  • Final Disposition, fate unknown
    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'
    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
    9 officers, 120 enlisted
    Troop Accommodations
    14 officers, 131 enlisted
    Boats 6 LCVPs
    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
    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
    USS LST-503
    LST-58 113k British troops watching lorries being loaded aboard USS LST-58 with USS LST-503 alongside at the hards in the port of Hamburg, prior to embarking on Operation Apostle, the Liberation of Norway, May 1945. Photo taken by Sgt. J. Mapham, No 5 Army Film & Photographic Unit. Photo No. BU 7048, from the collections of the Imperial War Museums. Part of the War Office Second World War Official Collection. Robert Hurst
    LST-503 32k USS LST-503 underway in August 1951 enroute to Greenland for operation "Blue Bird" Pat Harris, USS LST-503
    LST-503 20k USS LST-503 beached while unloading vehicles during operation "Blue Bird" at Greenland, in 1951. Pat Harris, USS LST-503
    LST-503 45k
    ROCS Chung Kuang (LST-216)
    LST-503 309k Ex-USS LST-503 in the service of the Republic of China as ROCS Chung Kuang (LST-216) off loads Chinese Nationalist troops on Quemoy Island during a seven day Communist Chinese cease fire. ROCS Chung Kuang was unescorted during her supply run from the Pescadores, 8 October 1958.
    AP Wirephoto.
    Tommy Trampp
    LST-503 412k ROCS Chung Kuang (LST-216) ending her 53 years of naval service during decommissioning ceremonies while moored at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, 16 February 2009. This is the third time Chung Kuang has been decommissioned. Waldo
    LST-503 387k
    LST-503 453k The 35th and last commanding officer of ROCS Chung Kuang (LST-216), CDR. Chi Bin Kuo, being interviewed by the press after decommissioning the ship at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, 16 February 2009.
    Photo from ROC Military News Agency
    LST-503 25k ROCS Chung Kuang (LST-216) decommissioning crew photo taken at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, 16 February 2009.
    Photo from ROC Military News Agency
    LST-503 724k CDR. Chi Bin Kuo and VADM Chung Wei Lee (Fleet Commander) during decommissioning ceremonies for ROCS Chung Kuang (LST-216) at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, 16 February 2009.
    Photo from ROC Military News Agency
    LST-503 55k Lowering the flag for the last time aboard ROCS Chung Kuang (LST-216) at Kaohsiung, Taiwan, 16 February 2009.
    Photo from ROC Military News Agency

    USS LST-503
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LT. Jones, Sam H., USNR8 December 1943 - August 1945
    02LT. Russell, H. E., USNRAugust 1945 - 5 November 1945
    03LTjg. Moore, Shirley P., USNR 5 November 1945 - 2 February 1946
    04LTjg. Faloon, Albert V., USNR 2 February 1946 - 11 June 1946
     Decommissioned11 June 1946 - 9 January 1951
    05LT.Mitchell, P. M.1953
    06LCDR. Day, Lawrence Ames, USN1957
    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
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    This page is created by David W. Almond and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 28 November 2014