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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER
805 KIDDER BREESE SE -- WASHINGTON NAVY YARD
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Lakeland

 

A city in Polk County, Fla., 30 miles east of Tampa.

 

(LSM-373: dp. 520; l. 204'; b. 35'; dr. 7'; s. 13 k.; cpl. 106; a. 2 40mm., 4 20mm., 7 .50 cal. AA mg.; cl. LSM-1)

 

Lakeland (LSM-373) was laid down as LSM-373 by Brown Shipbuilding Co., Houston, Tex., 9 December 1944; launched 30 December; and commissioned 27 January 1945, Lt. (j.g.) Robert W. Mueller in command.

 

After shakedown LSM-373 departed Gulfport, Miss., 4 March 1945 for the Pacific. Sailing via San Pedro and Pearl Harbor, she arrived Eniwetok 4 May. Loading lube oil in the Marianas, she sailed to Okinawa, arriving 8 June. LSM-373 discharged her cargo to U.S. forces fighting for this strategic base which lay at the gateway to the Japanese homeland. During the remaining weeks of World War II, the landing ship continued operations in the Marianas, Solomons, and Okinawa.

 

After Japanís acceptance of Allied peace terms, LSM-373 shuttled troops and supplies for occupation forces in Korea and China. Departing Guam 25 April 1946, she returned to the United States, arriving Mobile, Ala., 15 July. LSM-373 decommissioned there 14 October 1946 and joined the Atlantic Reserve Fleet at Green Cove Springs, Fla.

 

She recommissioned at Charleston, S.C., 28 February, 1958, Lt. D. O. Evans in command. Following training and repairs, LSM-373 arrived Miami 7 April for service as a logistic supply ship. For the next 18 months she shuttled supplies from Miami and Norfolk to naval outposts in the Caribbean. The landing ship was named Lakeland 14 October 1959 and decommissioned at Norfolk 5 November 1959. She was struck from the Navy list 1 January 1960, and sold to Portsmouth Salvage Co. 6 October 1960.