Share your thoughts. We welcome all comments. Simply email us and we will post them on the website. GET TALKING!

Donald E McDaniel Jr said...

10/03/2004
MY NAME IS DONALD E McDANIEL JR AND I STUMBLED ACROSS THE USS LST 534 WEBSITE WHILE WORKING ON MY FAMILY HISTORY. MY FATHER, DONALD E McDANIEL, SERVED ABOARD THE USS LST 534 AND WAS ON BOARD THE DAY SHE WAS SUNK BY THE JAPANESE SUICIDE PLANE. HE BOARDED HER IN NEW YORK AFTER HER RETURN FROM THE EUROPEAN THEATER AND SERVED ABOARD UNTIL SHE WAS SUNK DURING THE BATTLE OF OKINAWA. HE THEN SERVED FOR ANOTHER YEAR AS PART OF THE OCCUPATIONAL FORCES ON OKINAWA.

THE NIGHT AFTER SHE WAS SUNK, HE AND HIS BEST FRIEND, JOE BLACKBURN, RETURNED TO THE SHIP AND MY FATHER REMOVED THE AMERICAN FLAG FROM THE SHIP SINCE SHE WAS BASICALLY AGROUND. MY FATHER DIED ON OCTOBER 4, 1995, AFTER A FOUR YEAR BATTLE WITH PROSTATE CANCER. THE USS LST 534 AMERICAN FLAG THAT WAS FLYING ABOVE HER THE DAY SHE WAS SUNK WAS BURIED WITH MY FATHER SINCE IT WAS HIS MOST CHERISHED POSSESSION.

HE RELATED TO ME THAT HE AND JOE BLACKBURN CAME UNDER FIRE WHEN THEY LEFT THE SHIP WITH THE FLAG AND I ASSUMED HE MEANT BY THE JAPANESE. HE LAUGHED AND SAID THAT THE MARINES GUARDING THE SHIP FIRED ON THEM, THINKING THAT THEY WERE JAPANESE. HE WAS ALWAYS VERY GRATEFUL TO HAVE SURVIVED THE ATTACK AND ALSO TO HAVE SURVIVED HIS LOOTING MISSION!

I HAVE PHOTOGRAPHS WHICH WERE TAKEN BY MY FATHER THE DAY OF THE ATTACK SHOWING THE SHIP ON FIRE AND MUCH OF THE DAMAGE TO HER. I ALSO HAVE PHOTOGRAPHS OF HIS LIVING QUARTERS ON OKINAWA WHICH CONSISTED OF A SHACK HE BUILT FROM CRATES AND OTHER PHOTOGRAPHS TAKEN ON OKINAWA OF JAPANESE BURIAL CAVES, ETC. Note from Darleen: Check back to see these photos in the near future.

Donald E McDaniel Jr


Ted Alevizos said...

09/03/2004
In June of 1945 I was serving with the 81st Seabee Battalion on Okinawa. We were an amphibious outfit operating pontoon barges. One day our signal man got a message and said to me “Hey Greek, there is a Lt. James Sarres who wants to know if we have a Ted Alevizos in our outfit.” I did not know that name and told my signal man to ask Sarres what he wants. “He wants to see you and wants you to come to LST 534 .” I was a cocky 19 year old sailor and said “Tell him there’s a war on and no time for visiting”.

A couple of days later, we had a slight lull in operations and we decided to take our barge over to LST 534 and find out who Lt. Sarres is.

It was a somewhat cloudy day. Just as our barge was coming alongside the LST a Kamikase plane came out of the clouds. The smiling Japanese pilot, a very young kid, flew over our barge and crashed into the LST.

We went aboard to help and I found Jim Sarres. He told me he was a close friend of my older sister Helen and brother-in-law Chris. Everything was in turmoil and our visit was very short.

After doing what we could to help, we returned to our barge.

I saw Jim again 43 years later at my sister’s 50th wedding anniversary; he was sitting at the head table. When he saw me he said , “Ted, come up here and tell everyone what happened on June 22, 1945 on Okinawa. You are younger than me and probably remember everything.”

Since then I have been regularly in touch with Jim and his wife. He still has his great sense of humor and always sends me funny items in the mail.

Ted Alevizos


Kathleen Thomas said...

08/03/2004
Ms. Mead -

In searching for information on women who welded LST's during WWII, I came upon your website.

My mother and her two sisters were welders during WWII and they worked on the LST. I am putting together a book about women welders during WWII. If you know any who are still living, please send me their names and how to contact them (or they may contact me at this email address). If you know any children who remember their mother's stories, please do the same. Also, if any sailors want to contribute on how well the ships held together, I would appreciate their comments (I have only skimmed through a few of the stories listed on your website).

If anyone responds by email in the subject heading, please indicate LST because I delete email that I'm not sure of who is sending it to me.

Thank you.

Kathleen Thomas
email: kthomas@thomaswright.com


Marie Kingsbury LaFlower said...

01/03/2002
Want to tell everyone that Dads' shipmate, Andy Clark did a superb workmanship on his illustrated book, A Cornfield Shipyard. I know my Dad will be very pleased as I was to receive the documentation of the LSD's of World War ll. It is a splendid gift. Andy even signs it. Thanks Andy.

Sincerely,

Marie Kingsbury LaFlower


Norris C. Long said...

09/07/2001
We are saddened to hear that Louis Stockdale has passed on.

Norris C. Long has submitted the following in Louis' memory:

He (Louis) was a free wheeling sort of guy who thought there was no reason not to bend the rules if it did a better job

I believe that it was John Hoyt standing a wheel watch and fulminating about the officers getting grapefruit juice while the crew got none.He said he was going to break into the store room and get a share. Happened to see Stockdale and told him he had better stop Hoyt who was a friend. He charged down and gave the group sharing with Hoyt a good lecture, then helped them break open another case and grabbed one to bring up and divvy with the group in the wheelhouse.

Norris C. Long


Terina Harkins said...

09/02/2001
This site is great! My grandfather, Charles Henry Hill served aboard the LST 534. Being able to visit this site and plus to have seen, "Onto Rugged Shores", has made me not only have a better sense of what those brave men did during the war but also has given me a deeper understanding of what being an American is all about.

I enjoy the tales that my grandfather tells me and to see these pictures and to read what others have to say, really puts it all into prospective. It provides me with more vivid memories then I had.

Thank you to all the men who served aboard the LST 534 and to those who gave the greatest sacrifice and never came home. You are not forgotten.

Terina Harkins


Ron Leonard said...

08/13/2001
The web site is great. Our father died before the TV airing of "On to Rugged Shores", but Linda had sent an advance copy. I have his hat and pin's from past reunions and I know he will be there in spirit.

Dad never failed to show his patriotism, but never talked about WWII, or it was a subject we just never go around to talking about. Linda, your documentary provided insight and memories I will always hold dear.

We will be going through the old pictures and see if we can't provide a few for the web site.

To the crew of LST534 and all that served in WWII you have my utmost gratitude. I salute you.

Ron Leonard
USMC 66-69
email: ronl@cortez-ac.com


Ernie Williams LST 510 said...

07/19/2001
Ahoy. I 'm always searching for amphibious crew members that live in Missouri. I'm president of the MISSOURI AMPHIBIOUS NAVY Inc. If you have any Missouri fellows in on your rooster let me know their address.

Ernie Williams LST 510


Richard Evenson said...

07/14/2001
I am impressed with this website and proud to be a nephew of Capt Olson.

Richard Evenson
Hilo, Hawaii


Marie L.Kingsbury LaFlower said...

07/13/2001
I feel immense gratitude to Linda Alvers for her dedication and her degree of tremendous contribution to the men on the lst 534. Linda's' further search of contributions to the lst association and the memorial efforts taking place for the men involved on lst involvement's during WWII.It has brought new experiences in all our lives. Thanks to all involved in the remembrance to our past.

A daughter of a LST 534 Veteran.

Marie L.Kingsbury LaFlower


Wow, your new site is great! I was pleasantly surprised when clicking on it today. Great job!

Kandy

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