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On January 3rd, 1944, Dad separated from his assignment aboard LST 31 and reported as Executive Office (XO) of the USS LST 34. According to the ship's history found at http://www.history.navy.mil/danfs/l9/lst-34.htm and at http://www.navsource.org/archives/10/16/160034.htm some of the following information was obtained and his assignment to this vessell and participation in her battles is confirmed by Dad's handwritten notes and copies of his official paperwork.
LST-34 was laid down on 15 March 1943 at Pittsburgh, Pa., by the Dravo Corp.; launched on 15 June 1943; sponsored by Mrs. Verne C. Cobb; and commissioned on 26 July 1943.
During World War II, LST-34 served in the Asiatic-Pacific theater and took part in the following operations :
During this time period, Dad was the XO on board the LST-34 for the Gilbert Islands, the Marshall Islands, and the Marianas operations:
- Occupation of Kwajalein and Majuro Atolls—January and February 1944
- Occupation of Eniwetok Atoll—February and March 1944
During the operations in the Marianas he participated in brutal and bloody engagements for the capture and occupation of Saipan in June 1944. (Visit: http://www.cnmi-guide.com/history/ww2/4/ for some outstanding information regarding this battle and the importance of the Marianas in the history of World War II.)
In August 1944, he assumed the position of Command Officer (CO) of the LST 34 serving aboard her during the landings at Leyte in October and November of that year. He remained her CO during the Lingayen landings on Luzon in January 1945
and during the assault and occupation of Okinawa Gunto in May 1945.
According to his documentation, on July 3rd, 1945, he and the vessel were ordered to Pearl Harbor, HI, where he separated from the vessel on July 23rd, 1945 and travelled to San Diego, CA.
It appears that Dad remained in California for about a year and 4 months. While there, he was promoted to Commander, US Naval Reserve on January 1st, 1946. Word War II was over and in November that year, he was dispatched back home to Philadelphia, PA where he was Honorably Discharged with the rank of Lieutenant Commander US Navy Reserve on November 10, 1946.
He would only be a civilian for a little under two years...Korea was stirring
Fate of LST 43: After the World War II, LST-34 went on to perform occupation duty in the Far East from March to November 1946. Following her return to the US, she was decommissioned on November 15th, 1946 and transferred to Military Government, Ryukyus. Her name was struck from the Navy list on December 23rd, 1947. In January 1949, while in the Far East she ran aground and her hulk was abandoned. LST-34 earned six battle stars for World War II service. Information obtained at: