WWII Ship USS LST-325, Decorated D-Day Veteran, Salutes Alexandria, Va

The 63-year-old amphibious landing ship beats its schedule by a full day and anchors overnight at the Little Creek Amphibious Base, where thousands of LST sailors trained, before docking today in Old Town Alexandria, Va. (dateline corrected)

Alexandria, VA (PRWEB) May 26, 2005 -- USS LST-325, a World War Two amphibious vessel known as a “Landing Ship, Tank” pulls into Old Town Alexandria, Va. today following a 1,700-mile voyage from Mobile, Ala. With the help of fair winds, following seas and a flawlessly performing ship, the crew arrived in Chesapeake Bay a full day ahead of schedule. It anchored overnight near the Little Creek Amphibious base, where thousands of these ships’ sailors have been trained.

The ship will be open to the public for four days. Tours will be conducted each day, from Friday, May 27 through Monday, Memorial Day. Hours are from 9:00 a.m. until 4:30 p.m., and the admission is $10.00 for visitors over 18, $5.00 for children over five and a special family rate of $20.00.

The ship will be docked at Robinson Terminal North. The gate entrance to the dock is located at the cross streets of Oronoco Street and Union Street, Old Town Alexandria, Va.

On Friday, Mayor William Euille will present the ship with a special proclamation and Captain Robert Jornlin will give the Mayor the keys to the bow doors. (This inside joke refers to a prank played upon unknowing new sailors who were told to fetch them. There are no keys to the bow doors.) They will then participate in a Memorial Service, followed by a tour of the ship.

The crewmembers hail from 23 states, with most of them being U.S. Navy veterans who served on our country’s LST’s at various times since 1942. They are bringing this ship to Alexandria, Va. and then to several ports in Massachusetts, so that those of us who appreciate the service of our veterans can board and explore the only operational LST museum ship in existence. Churchill referred to them as the ships that won the war.

Not all of the crewmembers are veterans. A few of them are serving in memory of their fathers who sailed on LST’s. They have learned the skills of their fathers from willing tutors who enjoy sharing with the younger generation, in the hope that they will keep alive the memory of these ships and the crews who sailed them.

After the ship leaves Alexandria she will proceed down Chesapeake Bay and around Cape Charles, and then head north to the Cape Cod Canal and Massachusetts Maritime Academy, where tours will be conducted from June 4 to June 7. Following that visit the ship moves onward to the Boston area and then on to Gloucester, before returning to Mobile, Ala. in time for Independence Day celebrations.

Further information is available on the ship’s website at www.LSTMemorial.org. USS LST-325 is owned and operated by The USS LST Ship Memorial, Inc., a non-profit corporation.

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Source :  http://www.prweb.com/releases/2005/5/prweb244523.htm