Monday, 16 April 2012 09:04

Volunteers work on upkeep for WWII troop ship

    EVANSVILLE, Ind. — Dozens of volunteers have started a week of intense maintenance work on the restored World War II troop landing ship that is docked on the Ohio River.

    About 60 volunteers spent much of Saturday taking on chores during the kickoff to the annual USS LST Ship Memorial "Spring Work Week."

    The work crew included several World War II veterans who served on ships similar to the LST-325 that was brought back to the U.S. from Greece in 2001 and has been permanently moored in Evansville since 2005, the Evansville Courier & Press reported (

    "I guess you could call it a labor of love as much as anything," said 86-year-old Bruce Voges of St. Joseph, Ill. "All of us went over there with a mission, most of us in our 70s — we wanted one of them things back in the U.S. We've got battleships, destroyers, cruisers, but we did not have an LST."

    Some volunteers concentrated on chipping off old paint in the tank deck, an area which would've carried 20 Sherman Tanks during the war, and applying a new coat of paint.

    Volunteers will spend most of the week painting the interior, but if they have time and weather permits, they will paint exterior parts of the ship as well.

    Engineering crew volunteers will spend much of the week in the engine room fine tuning the ship's mechanical parts, electrical wiring and plumbing. Repairs are also planned for three of the ship's ballast tanks.

    Repair work is decided through a maintenance committee within the memorial association that determines which jobs are most important, according to deck officer Bob Barbier.

    The LST-325 was part of the second wave of the D-Day invasion in June 1944 and made 44 other trips between France and Great Britain and other ports before the war ended. While this one was built in Philadelphia, many other LSTs were constructed at a Jeffersonville shipyard upriver from Evansville.

    The LST-325 is open for public guided tours and organizers plan a multi-city tour starting in September to raise money.


    Related World War History Online Posts

    • For you, the war is over! 1.8 ton monster mine dropped by the RAF on Germany 65 years ago is finally defused
      For you, the war is over! 1.8 ton monster mine dropped by the RAF on Germany 65 years ago is finally defused Bomb disposal experts in Germany have successfully defused a 1.8-tonne unexploded World War Two bomb in the river Rhine, after thousands of residents were evacuated from homes, hospitals and even a prison. The British aerial mine is said to be one of the biggest ever found in the country. Around 45,000 people were evacuated from 1.1 mile area around the…
    • Extraordinary images merge images of European city streets in war and peace
      Extraordinary images merge images of European city streets in war and peace Storming the crumbling Reichstag, Soviet troops appear to attack the Berlin landmark as modern day tourists queue to enter the historic building. But these extraordinary images are the result of merging two pictures taken in the same location over 60 years apart. Amateur Russian photographer Sergey Larenkov, 42, collected old pictures of five European cities which suffered the heaviest fighting…
    • WW2 RAAF Spitfire wreckage discovered
      WW2 RAAF Spitfire wreckage discovered The wreckage of a Royal Australian Air Force Spitfire and the skeletal remains of the pilot have been unearthed by amateur aviation historians.
    • Forest workers found WWII bomb on Cawdor Estate
      Forest workers found WWII bomb on Cawdor Estate A World War II mortar bomb has been dug up by forestry workers in a remote part of Cawdor Estate, near Nairn. The discovery was made at about 08:50 during a survey of the forest, near Reareach Hill, Glengeoullie. Police officers put a cordon around the area. The nearest house is about a mile from the site. Bomb disposal experts…