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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive

Patch at left contributed by Mike Smolinski, at right by Don McGrogan BMCS USN Ret.

Contributed by Al Grazevich

USS Vernon County (LST-1161)
USS LST-1161 (1953 - 1955)

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

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Combat Action Ribbon (3) [21 November 1966, 9 to 12 June 1968, 25 June 1969]
Second Row - Presidential Unit Citation - Navy Unit Commendation (3)- Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation (3)
Third Row - Navy Battle "E" Ribbon (3-1963, 1964, 1965) - National Defense Service Medal - Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (10-Vietnam, 4-Quemoy-Matsu 1-Laos)
Fourth Row - Vietnam Service Medal (14) - Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation (11) - Republic of Vietnam Campaign Medal

USS Vernon County (LST-1161) was transferred to Venezuela, renamed ARBV Amazonas T-21
LST-1156 Terrebonne Parish Class Landing Ship Tank
  • Laid down, 14 April 1952, at Ingalls Shipbuilding Corp., Pascagoula, MS.
  • Launched, 25 November 1952
  • Commissioned USS LST-1161, 18 May 1953, LCDR. D. E. Sutherlin in command
  • Named USS Vernon County (LST 1161), 1 July 1955
  • During the Vietnam War USS Vernon County participated in the following campaigns:

    Vietnam War Campaigns
    Campaigns and Dates Campaigns and Dates
    Vietnam Defense
    16 to 27 August 1965
    30 October to 14 November 1965
    15 to 17 December
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive-Phase VI
    19 to 31 January 1969
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive
    18 January to 5 February 1966
    19 to 25 February 1966
    2 to 17 April 1966
    25 to 30 April 1966
    6 to 24 May 1966
    Vietnam Summer-Fall 1969
    12 to 15 July 1969
    2 to 13 August 1969
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive-Phase II
    29 July to 2 August 1966
    30 September to 23 November 1966
    Vietnam Winter-Spring 1970
    22 November 1969 to 27January 1970
    18 to 22 February 1970
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive-Phase III
    14 June to 27 August 1967
    19 December 1967 to 29 January 1968
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive-Phase VII
    21 to 25 February 1971
    7 to 9 April 1971
    27 to 28 May 1971
    Tet Counteroffensive
    30 January to 4 February 1968
    Consolidation I
    4 September to 3 November 1971
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive-Phase IV
    19 May to 23 June 1968
    Consolidation II
    23 January to 7 March 1972
    Vietnamese Counteroffensive-Phase V
    13 August to 21 October 1968
    Vietnam Ceasefire
    28 April to 25 May 1972
    5 to 30 October 1972
    10 to 11 November 1972
    18 to 26 November1972

  • Decommissioned, 14 June 1973
  • Transferred, on loan, to Venezuela, 29 June 1973, renamed ARBV Amazonas (T-21)
  • Sold outright to Venezuela, 1 December 1977
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 1 December 1977
  • Final Disposition, fate unknown
  • USS Vernon County (LST-1161) earned the Presidential Unit Citation, three Navy Unit Commendations, three Meritorious Unit Commendations and 14 campaign stars for Vietnam War service
    Displacement 2,590 t.(lt) , 5,800 t.(fl)
    Length 384'
    Beam 55'
    Draft 17'
    Speed 14 kts.
    ships company and staff officers 16
    ships company enlisted 189
    Troop Accommodations
    15 officers
    380 enlisted
    three LCVP
    one LCPL
    three twin 3"/50 gun mounts
    five single 20mm gun mounts
    four GM 16-278A Diesel engines, 6000shp
    two controllable pitch propellers

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    USS Vernon County (LST-1161)
    Vernon County 16k USS Vernon County (LST-1161) painted white to reflect the sun, date and location unknown. LST Home Port web site
    Vernon County 17k
    Vernon County 209k USS Vernon County (LST-1161) underway loaded with vehicles bound for Taiwan, date unknown.
    US Navy photo from "All Hands" magazine, September 1964
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret.
    Vernon County 74k USS Vernon County (LST-1161) off loading Marines and equipment at Chu Lai, South Vietnam in 1965.
    US Navy photos
    Dick Lindenauer and Robert Hurst.
    Vernon County 181k
    Washoe County 289k USS Vernon County (LST-1161) (foreground) and USS Washoe County (LST- 1165) (background) beached at the base of Mt Fuji, Japan, May 1969. Bob Morrison EN2 USS Washoe County
    Vernon County 174k USS Vernon County (LST-1161) underway, date and location unknown. Ed Zajkowski
    Vernon County 68k USS Vernon County (LST-1161) at anchor in Vietnamese waters, date and location unknown. Dan Ninedorf
    ARBV Amazonas (T-21)
    Vernon County 43k Ex-USS Vernon County (LST-1161) in Venezuelan service as ARBV Amazonas (T-21) moored pierside at Pearl Harbor, September 1973. Photo by Darrell Baty

    USS Vernon County (LST-1161)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS) and the
    Mobile Riverine Force Association
    Commanding Officers
    01LCDR Southerlin, Donald Eston18 May 1953 - ?
    02LCDR Tarbell, Curtis LoyalFebruary 1958 - ?
    03LCDR McCann, Carl JayFebruary 1962 - ?
    04LT. Nesbitt, Harry James, USN1965 - 10 June 1966
    05LT. Mott, Louis Dale, USN10 June 1966 - 1967
    06LCDR. Manning, Sidney Elwood1967 - ?
    07LCDR Thames, Lewis Herman10 August 1970 - 14 June 1973
    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
    Mobile Riverine Force Association
    Brownwater Navy in Vietnam Web Book
    LST Homeport
    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
    Comments, Suggestions, E-mail Webmaster.
    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 15 May 2015