Photo by Lloyd King. Used with permission.
This page is dedicated to one of my ancestors - Quarter Master Second Class Felix Stanley Mrozek Sr. He was stationed abord LST 400 from 1943-1945. He participated the the D-Day Invasion on Normandy Beach. I would LOVE to hear from ANY of his shipmates, or shipmate's families. In the meantime I intend to use this page to collect information about this Ship and stories I remember him telling me about it.
LST 400's keel was laid on 28 September 1942 at the Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co., Newport News, Virginia. She was commissioned on 7 January 1943. During World War Two she was part of the Sicilian Occupation and was part of the 2nd wave of D-Day invasion.
LST 400's part in the D-Day invasion began with its assignment to Force U which would land on Utah Beach. LST 400 was slated to land in the section of Utah Beach known as "Uncle Red".
The LST was part of U.S.Navy Commander S B Purdie's 'Unit Number 2', having with it the USLST's 311, 346, 371, 380, 382 and LST 400. Felix didnt talk much about the actually landing so I have to assume it was pretty bloody by the time they got there. They were scheduled to arrive about 14:30 hours. There are various versions to this story but Felix mentioned him and his shipmates getting carbines with the intention to supplement the invasion land forces.
He also talked of unloading cargo destined for Paris. (He also mentioned "helping" deliver it even though thier responsibility ended at the dock and getting hauled back to the ship by MP's and getting a talking to by the CO.). He had said they nicknamed thier ship the 400 club (or something similar) and I remember seeing a picture somewhere of the main stack painted with a top hat, cane, and gloves. Of course if anyone can shed more light on the ship and her part in the war I'd greatly appreciate it.
After the war her history becomes harder to track. She was renamed the USS Bradley County and served for 10 more years with the US Navy until she was sold to South Korea and struck from the Navy registers in 1960. After that her fate is unknown. During the war she earned 2 battle stars. Per my husband that is the equivelent of todays Battle "E"'s in the modern navy.
Specifically LST 400 had these specifications:
- Displacement 1,780 t.(fl), 3,880 t.(fl)
- Length 328'
- Beam 50'
- Draft unloaded, bow 2' 4" stern 7' 6", loaded bow 8' 2" stern 14' 1"
- Speed 12k.
- Complement 8-10 Officers, 100-115 Enlisted
- Troop Capacity, approx. 140 officers and enlisted
- Boats, 2-6 LCVP
- Armament- one single 3"/50 gun mount, five 40mm gun mounts, six 20mm gun mounts, two .50-cal machine guns, four .30-cal machine guns
- Propulsion, two General Motors 12-567 Diesel engines, two shafts, twin rudders.
some information on this page gotten from
NAVSource On-Line and from Tony Chapman, along with my personal recollections of Conversations with family and Felix himself.
For More infomation on LST's I would suggest a visit to the LST Association homepage at :
UNITED STATES L.S.T. ASSOCIATION
This page is Dedicated to the Memory of Felix S Mrozek Sr. (1918-2000)