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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive


International Radio Call Sign:
November - Foxtrot - Tango - Whiskey
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - American Campaign Medal -Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (2) - World War II Victory Medal
Bottom Row - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp) - Philippines Presidential Unit Citation - Philippines Liberation Medal (1)

LST-542 Class Tank Landing Ship:
  • Laid down, 3 July 1944, at Jeffersonville Boat & Machine Co., Jeffersonville, IN.
  • Launched, 7 August 1944
  • Commissioned USS LST-721, 9 September 1944, LT. Robert B. Safford, USNR, in command
  • During World War II USS LST-721 was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaigns:

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaigns
    Campaign and Dates Campaign and Dates
    Consolidation and capture of the Southern Philippines
    Visayan Island landings, 18 March and 29 March to 3 April 1945
    Borneo operations
    Balikpapan operation, 26 June to 9 July 1945

  • Following World War II USS LST-721 was assigned to Occupation service in the Far East from 28 September to 13 November 1945
  • Decommissioned, 24 June 1946
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 15 August 1946
  • Reinstated in the Naval Register, 21 November 1946
  • Struck from the Naval Register for a second time, 10 June 1947
  • USS LST-721 earned two battle stars for World War II service
  • Final Disposition, sold for non-self propelled operation, 8 March 1948, to Green's Bayou Transports, New Orleans, LA.
    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
    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
    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 Contributed
    LST-933 259k Among the LSTs beached at Mindoro, Philippines are USS LST-933, USS LST 912, USS LST 639, USS LST 721, USS LST 680. The photo is undated but the handwriting on the back identified the location as Mindoro. Based on hull numbers alone, this was likely taken while this element of CTU 78.7.2 unloaded the 41st Infantry Division at Mangarin Bay from 8-10 February 1945. LST 639 reportedly had an LCT aboard that was launched on 10 February that does not appear here, but everything else matches the reports. CTU 78.7.2 was comprised of LSTís from across a few LST groups, although most pictured here were from LST Group 66 (CTF 76). This convoy was the smaller element of the task unit and consisted of 16 LSTs, six LSMs, and five merchant ships under the command of Navy CAPT H. B. Hudson, CO of LST Flotilla Twenty-Four. The larger convoy of CTU 78.7.2 split off for Lingayen the day before. Brian Miller
    LST-933 309k
    LST-721 51k USS LST-721 moves alongside another LST at Blue Beach, Morotai while landing Australian Army units of 7 Division.
    Australian War Memorial photo # 109228.
    Australian War Memorial
    LST-721 115k USS LST-721 entering San Francisco Bay after passing under the Golden Gate Bridge, circa 1945-1946.
    US Naval History and Heritage Command photo # NH 83638
    US Naval History and Heritage Command

    USS LST-721
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers
    01LT Safford, Robert B., USNR9 September 1944 - 29 November 1945
    02LT Brown, Donald H., USNR29 November 1945 - 15 March 1946
    03LCDR. Rudolph, Robert P., USNR15 March 1946 - 24 June 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
    LST Home Port
    State LST Chapters
    United States LST Association

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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 7 June 2019