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NavSource Online: Amphibious Photo Archive

USS LST-53 (1943 - 1954)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Foxtrot - Charlie - Uniform

APL-59 was transferred to South Korea and renamed ROKS Chang Su (LST- 811)
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Combat Action Ribbon - (Normandy 1944) - American Campaign Medal - Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign Medal (2)
Bottom Row - Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal (1) - World War II Victory Medal - Navy Occupation Service Medal (with Asia clasp)

LST-1 Class Tank Landing Ship:
  • Laid down, 24 September 1943, at Dravo Corp., Neville Island, PA.
  • Launched, 6 November 1943
  • Placed in partial commission for ferrying to New Orleans for fitting out, 5 December to 21 December 1943, LT. John W. Rogers, USN, in command (Ferry Command)
  • Placed in full commission as USS LST-53, 21 December 1943, ENS. Michael Stapleton, USN, in command
  • During World War II USS LST-53 was first assigned to both the Europe-Africa-Middle East Theater and the Asiatic-Pacific Theater and participated in the following campaigns:

    Europe-Africa-Middle East Campaign

    Asiatic-Pacific Campaign
    Invasion of Normandy, 6 to 25 June 1944 Okinawa Gunto operation
    Assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto, 17 to 30 June 1945
    Invasion of Southern France, 15 August to 25 September 1944  

  • While assigned to the Asiatic-Pacific Theater USS LST-53 came under the command of:
    LST Flotilla Thirty-Nine, CAPT. D. H. Johnston USN (22);
    LST Group One Hundred-Five, CDR. E. P Wilson USN (20);
    LST Division Two Hundred-Ten
  • Following World War II USS LST-53 was assigned to Occupation service in the Far East from 20 September 1945 to 22 January 1946
  • Decommissioned, 22 January 1946 and transferred to Commander Naval Forces Far East (COMNAVFE) Shipping Control Authority for Japan (SCAJAP), redesignated Q021
  • Laid up in the Reserve Fleet, date unknown
  • Redesignated a Non-self-propelled Barracks Ship APL-59 in September 1954
  • Struck from the Naval Register, date unknown
  • Transferred to the Republic of Korea in May 1955 and renamed ROKS Chang Su (LST- 811)
  • USS LST-53 earned three battle stars for World War II service
  • 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
    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 Source
    LST-54 57k USS LST-55, USS LST-53 and USS LST-54 moored, date unknown, possibly is the United Kingdom. Submitted by Frank Principe, Jr., Photo by Frank James Principe, Sr., USS LST-54
    LSM-83 51k USS LST-53 nested at Kerama Rhetto, circa late-May early-June 1945, with USSLSM-83 (starboard) and the hulk of the decommissioned USS Barry (APD-29) and the fleet ocean tug USS Lipan (ATF-85) (port). Barry was used as a decoy ship to lure suicide planes into burned out ships. Lipan's job was to tow her. Ken Roberts to the USS LSM / LSMR Association

    USS LST-53 / APL-59
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS).
    Commanding Officers
    01LT. Rogers, John Walton, USN (Ferry Command)5 December 1943 - 21 December 1943
    02ENS. Stapleton, Michael, USN21 December 1943 - 22 January 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
    Back To The Navsource Photo Archives Main Page Back To The Amphibious Ship Type Index Back To The Tank Landing Ship (LST) Photo Index Back To The Non-self-propelled Barracks Craft (APL) Photo Index
    Comments, Suggestions, E-mail Webmaster.
    This page is created by David W. Almond and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 4 July 2014