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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive
International Radio Call Sign:
November - Foxtrot - India - Foxtrot
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons
Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Combat Action Ribbon (retroactive - Iwo Jima) - American Campaign Medal
Bottom Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp)
LST-542 Class Tank Landing Ship:
Laid down, 30 June 1944, at Chicago Bridge and Iron Co., Seneca, IL.
Launched, 25 September 1944
Commissioned USS LST-646, 13 October 1944, LT. Hugh F. Fitzgerald, USN, in command
During World War II USS LST-646 was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater:
LST Flotilla Twenty-One, CAPT. W. H. Brereton, USN (24);
LST Group Sixty-Three, LCDR. R .E. Farnestock USNR;
LST Division One Hundred Twenty-Five and participated in the follow campaign:
|Campaign and Dates
|Iwo Jima operation
Assault and occupation of Iwo Jima, 20 February to 16 March 1945
Following World War II USS LST-646 was assigned to Occupation service in the Far East for the following periods:
Decommissioned, 15 March 1946
Struck from the Naval Register, 17 April 1946
USS LST-646 earned one battle star for World War II service
Final Disposition, sold, 11 May 1948 to J. Willis Smith and Bros. for scrap
Navy Occupation Service Medal
|2 September to 26 October 1945
|1 to 6 November 1945
|1 to 6 December 1945
4,080 t.(fl) (sea-going draft w/1675 ton load)
2,366 t. (beaching displacement)
Length 328' o.a.
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
Boats 2 LCVP
Cargo Capacity (varied with mission - payloads between 1600 and 1900 tons)
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
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
|Click On Image
For Full Size Image
||LST-646, launching, 25 September 1944, at Chicago Bridge and Iron Co., Seneca, IL
||LST Home Port Web Site
||USS LST-646 crew photo taken on commissioning day, 13 October 1944, at Chicago Bridge and Iron Co., Seneca, IL
||Joe Schmidt for his grandfather Leslie Schmidt RDmC USS LST-646
||USS LST 646 in the background moored in Apra Harbor, Guam, 15 April 1945, while undergoing overhaul following a
month of heavy action at Iwo Jima. In the foreground Navy hospital personnel offload 595 patients
(and the remains of one soldier who died enroute) from the fight raging on Okinawa from USS Solace (AH-5)
Solace also disembarked Navy photographer LTjg. Victor Jorgenson who was assigned temporarily to the ship. He is very likely the source of these photos.
Solace, “The Workhorse of the Pacific” then took on fuel and other supplies in preparation for a return to Okinawa for more casualties. This was one of
seven trips Solace made from Okinawa, delivering over 4000 casualties
to base hospitals throughout the Marianas.
||USS LST-646 and USS LST-662 entering the floating drydock USS ABSD-6 in Apra Harbor, Guam, 29 May 1945.
US National Archives photo #80-G-379469, a US Navy photo now in the collections of the US National Archives.
|US Naval Historical Center
||USS LST-646 and USS LST-662 in the floating drydock USS ABSD-6, Apra Harbor, Guam, 29 May 1945.
US National Archives photo # 80-N-379472, a US Navy photo now in the collection of the US National Archives.
|US Naval Historical Center
||USS LST-646 beached at Iwo Jima, circa 1945.
||LST Home Port Web Site
Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
|01||LT. Fitzgerald, Hugh F., USNR||13 October 1944 - 26 November 1945|
|02||LT. Muenster, William R., USNR||26 November 1945 - 15 March 1946|
|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
State LST Chapters
United States LST Association
Last Updated 22 April 2022
This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo|