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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
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Lyra

 

A northern constellation representing the lyre of Mercury which contains Vega, fourth brightest star in the heavens.

 

(AK‑101: dp. 4,356; l. 441'6"; b. 56'11"; dr. 28'4"; s. 12.5 k.; cpl. 255; a. 15", 13", 8 20mm.; cl. Crater)

 

Lyra (AK‑101) was laid down as Cyrus Hamlin under Maritime Commission contract by Permanente Metal Corp., Richmond, Calif., 25 April 1943; renamed Lyra 27 May 1943; launched 28 May 1943; sponsored by Mrs. Harry N. Nelson; acquired by the Navy 10 June 1943; converted by General Engineering & Drydock Co., San Francisco, Calif., completed 22 July 1943; and commissioned 22 July 1943, Lt. Comdr. J. H. Henderson in command.

 

Lyra departed San Francisco 28 August 1943 with 8,000 tons of lend‑lease cargo for New Zealand. En route she towed one unit of a sectional dock to Espiritu Santo, New Hebrides, and arrived Wellington, New Zealand, 19 October. The cargo ship returned to San Francisco 24 November. On 17 December she began a 3‑day experimental run to help perfect towing techniques.

 

Two days after Christmas, she again departed for Espiritu Santo towing ARD‑12. The ship then proceeded to Tulagi and Munda, Solomon Islands, embarking 200 troops from the latter for transport to Guadalcanal, which she reached 29 February 1944. Lyra returned to Tulagi and Guadalcanal, and was back in San Francisco 2 April after steaming 13,567 miles. From 29 April to 30 June, she made two short voyages between the west coast and Pearl Harbor.

 

The cargo shipís next assignment was a towing operation to Manus, Admiralty Islands, between 21 August and 15 January 1945. On 26 February she voyaged to Samar, Philippine Islands, and returned to home port 1 June. Her seventh voyage, 17 June to 24 August, took her to Honolulu and Saipan. She sailed from San Francisco 26 September to Samar for her last assignment before decommissioning in Norfolk 3 May 1946. Lyra was redelivered to WSA 5 days later. She was sold in 1947 to A. G. Pappadakis and operated out of Piraeus, Greece, as Virginia.