Please report any broken links or trouble you might come across to the Webmaster. Please take a moment to let us know so that we can correct any problems and make your visit as enjoyable and as informative as possible.

NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive


Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from left to right
American Campaign Medal - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal - World War II Victory Medal

USS LSM-558 was transferred to the Republic of Germany and named FGS Viper (L-753)
LSM-1 Class Landing Ship Medium:
  • Laid down, 10 April 1945, at US Navy Yard, Charleston, S.C.
  • Launched, 28 April 1945
  • Commissioned USS LSM-558, 2 November 1945, LT. John B. Foster USNR in command
  • During World War II USS LSM-558 was assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater:
    LSM Flotilla Sixteen;
    LSM Group Forty-Six;
    LSM Division Ninety-Two
  • Decommissioned, 3 June 1946, at Green Cove Springs FL.
  • Laid up in the Atlantic Reserve Fleet, Florida Group, Green Cove Springs
  • Struck from the Naval Register, date unknown
  • Transferred, 5 September 1958, to the Federal Republic of Germany , named FGS Viper (L-753)
  • Retired by the Germany Navy in 1970
  • Merchant Service
    Sold in 1970, to Norfolk Lijn, Scheveningen, NL
    Rebuilt as a Roll On/Roll Off ship at Boele´s Scheepswerven, Bolnes, NL
    Renamed MS Duchess of Holland in 1971, reflagged Dutch
    Duchess of Holland provided RO/RO service between Scheveningen, NL and Great Yarmouth,
    United Kingdom from 1971 to 1973
    Sold in 1973 to Ocean Inchape Ltd. London, United Kingdom, renamed MS Oil Dragon,
    reflagged United Kingdom
    Sold in 1986 Vantage Shipping Ltd. Gibraltar, renamed MS Seacore
  • Final Disposition, sold in 1989, to Scowcroft L.H. Gibraltar, scrapped, 1991/92
    Displacement 520 t.(light), 743 t. (landing) 1,095 t.(fully loaded)
    Length 203' 6" (ovl)
    Beam 34' 6"
    light, 3' 6" forward, 7' 8" aft
    fully loaded, 6' 4" forward, 8' 3" aft
    Speed 13.2 kts. (max.), (928 tons displacement)
    5 officers
    54 enlisted
    one twin bow mounted 40mm gun
    four single 20mm gun mounts
    Vehicle/Boat Capacity 5 medium or 3 heavy tanks, or 6 LVT's, or 9 DUKW's
    Fuel Capacity
    Diesel 1,225 Bbls
    Troop Accommodations
    2 officers
    46 enlisted
    Armor 10-lb. STS splinter shield to gun mounts, pilot house and conning station
    Endurance 4,900 miles @ 12kts.(928 tons displacement)
    two General Motors (model GM 16-278A, reversible with hydraulic clutch) Diesel engines, direct drive with 1,440 BHP each @ 720rpm
    Ship's Service Generators
    two Diesel-drive 100Kw 450V A.C.
    one Diesel-drive 20Kw 120V D.C.
    twin propellers, 2,800shp

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    USS LSM-558
    269k LSM-558 launching, at Charleston Navy Yard, Saturday, 28 April 1945. LSM-558 was sponsored by Miss Eleanor Gamble James, 14, a student at Ashley Hall, Charleston, daughter of RADM Jules James, USN, Commandant of Charleston Navy Yard and the Sixth Naval District, and Mrs. James. ADM. James presided at the launching ceremony.
    US Navy Yard Charleston file photo # 2198-4
    David Wright
    LSM-558 127k Charleston Navy Yard fitting out pier "C" looking north to river end. Shop field offices and Building Ways 1 and 2 in background on left. Ships present LSM-556, LSM-557, LSM-558 front row. Second row LSM-553, LSM-554 and LSM-555. Beyond the LSMs is Tidewater (AD-31).
    Charleston Navy Yard photo # 1997-45
    USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-558 90k 19 LSMs at Green Cove Springs, FL., date unknown. Ships present and identifiable are:
    Front Row-LSM-558, LSM-539, LSM-543 and LSM-544
    Second Row-?, LSM-413, LSM-542 and LSM-540
    Third Row- ?, ?, LSM-555 and ?.
    Al Edwards LSM-343 to the USS LSM / LSMR Association
    Thames River 62k Page one of the Schedule of Events pamphlet for the Transfer and Commissioning Ceremonies of six US Navy ships that will comprise the Federal Republic of Germany Second Landing Squadron, 5 September 1958 at US Naval Shipyard Charleston, S.C.
    Thames River LSM(R)-534 to Germany renamed Natter (L-755)
    Smyrna River LSM(R)-532 to Germany renamed Otter (L-754)
    LSM-537 to Germany named Krokodil (L-750)
    LSM-491 to Germany named Eidechse (L-751)
    LSM-553 to Germany named Salamander (L-752)
    LSM-558 to Germany named Viper (L-753)
    Ingo Zeitz
    Thames River 45k Page two of the Transfer and Commissioning Ceremonies pamphlet for the six US Navy ships that will comprise the Federal Republic of Germany Second Landing Squadron, 5 September 1958 at US Naval Shipyard Charleston, S.C. Ingo Zeitz
    FGS Viper (L-753)
    LSM-558 96k Ex-LSM-558 in the Federal Republic of Germany service as FGS Viper (L-753) moored pierside, date and place unknown. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-558 66k Viper (L-753) beaching, date and place unknown. USS LSM / LSMR Association
    LSM-556 31k Viper (L-753) beached, date and place unknown. Ingo Zeitz
    LSM-553 69k The four LSMs of the Federal Republic of Germany Second Landing Squadron moored pierside at the German Naval Base at Wilhelmshaven, Germany. From outboard to inboard;
    FGS Viper (L-753)
    FGS Salamander (L-752)
    FGS Krokodil (L-750)
    FGS Eidechse (L-751), date unknown.
    Ingo Zeitz
    LSM-553 49k The four LSMs of the Federal Republic of Germany Second Landing Squadron beached during amphibious exercises, date and place unknown.From left to right;
    FGS Eidechse (L-751)
    FGS Krokodil (L-750)
    FGS Salamander (L-752)
    FGS Viper (L-753), date unknown.
    Ingo Zeitz
    LSM-558 71k FGS Viper (L-753) leaving Esbjerg, Denmark, May 1967. Photo by Gerhard Mueller-Debus
    LSM-558 90k Overhead view of FGS Viper (L-753) underway, date and location unknown. Robert Hurst
    LSM-558 51k FGS Viper (L-753) underway, circa 1960s, location unknown. Karsten Petersen
    Merchant Service
    LSM-558 45k Ex-LSM-558 in commercial as the Norfolk Lijn of Scheveningen, NL, Roll-On / Roll-Off ship MV Duchess of Holland under way, circa 1971 to 1973, location unknown. Ingo Zeitz

    The history extract for USS LSM-558 is from LSM-LSMR Amphibious Forces, Vol. II. Paducah, Kentucky: Turner Publishing Company, © 1997. (ISBN 1-56311-389-9).
    Commanding Officers
    01LT. Foster, John B., USNR10 April 1945 - ?

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

    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To The Amphibious Ship Type Index Back To The Landing Ship Medium (LSM) 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 8 May 2020