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USS HUNTERDON COUNTY (LST-838 ) - a LST-542-class tank landing ship

In Commission 1944 to 1949

LST-838 Deployments - Major Events

Add a LST-838 Shellback Initiation Add a LST-838 Deployment - Major Event
Month Year to Month Year Deployment / Event
SEP 1944 - Keel Date: 20 SEP 1944
at American Bridge Company Ambridge PA
NOV 1944 - Launch Date: 8 NOV 1944
DEC 1944 - Commissioned: 4 DEC 1944
APR 1945 - APR 1945 invasion of OKINAWA
SEP 1966 - SEP 1966 Recommisioned
JAN 1967 - JAN 1967 Reclassified AGP-838 (Patrol Craft Tender)
MAR 1967 - NOV 1967 West Pac-Viet Nam
APR 1967 - JAN 1971 West Pac-Viet Nam
SEP 1968 - Shellback Initiation - 28 SEP 1968 - Pacific Ocean
FEB 1969 - JUL 1969 West Pac-Viet Nam
MAR 1970 - JAN 1971 West Pac-Viet Nam
AUG 1974 - Decommissioned: 1 AUG 1974

LST-838 General Specifications

Class: LST-542-class tank landing ship

Complement: 7 Officers and 104 Enlisted

Displacement: 1625 tons

Length: 328 feet

Beam: 50 feet

Draft: Loaded - 8' FWD - 14' AFT

Final Disposition: Transferred to Malaysia 1 August 1974


LST-838 was laid down by American Bridge Co. Ambridge Pa. 20 September 1944; launched 8 November; sponsored by Miss Margaret Foster; and commissioned 4 December Lt. Allen T. Larkins Jr. in command.

After shakedown off Florida LST-838 loaded heavy construction equipment at New Orleans and departed 5 January 1945. Loading troops and additional cargo at Pearl Harbor the landing ship sailed to the Mariana Islands arriving Guam 4 March. She unloaded her cargo then steamed to Saipan where she loaded equipment and embarked units of the 130th Naval Construction Battalion for the invasion of Okinawa.

Departing Saipan 25 March LST-838 was en route to the heavily fortified Japanese stronghold arriving off the southern Okinawa beaches 1 April. Despite a futile effort by the enemy to salvage the last barrier protecting their homeland Allied forces succeeded in securing a beachhead. On D-day after LST-884 was struck by a suicide plane LST-838 recovered 79 survivors from the heavily damaged ship. The landing ship stood off the Coast of Okinawa until 13 April when she approached Green Beach to discharge Seabees and construction equipment. The following day during one of the many raids she splashed a Japanese plane.

Departing Okinawa on the 16th LST-838 arrived Ulithi 6 days later. For the rest of the war she transported men and equipment throughout the South and Western Pacific Islands.

Following the victorious conclusion of World War II LST-838 moved men and equipment to Japan for occupation duties. She remained in the Far East until 7 November when she departed Yokohama for Guam; then embarked 544 Army veterans and steamed to the United States arriving San Francisco 23 December.

On 5 March 1946 LST-838 sailed to Portland Oreg. and decommissioned at Vancouver Wash. 7 August. She joined the Pacific Reserve Fleet and remained there until she recommissioned at Vallejo Calif. 10 September 1966 to help meet the large demands for ships in the Vietnam war. While in reserve LST-838 was named Hunterdon County 1 July 1955. Hunterdon County operated out of San Diego until sailing for the Far Fast early in 1967. She arrived Subic Bay 8 March and promptly busied herself transporting men and materiel in support of the Allied struggle to thwart Communist efforts to take over the Republic of South Vietnam. She continued to operate off Southeast Asia through mid-1967.

LST-838 received one battle star for World War II service.

[Note: The above USS HUNTERDON COUNTY (LST-838) history may or may not contain text provided by crew members of the USS HUNTERDON COUNTY (LST-838) or by other non-crew members and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]