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Lorain County


A county in northern Ohio.


(LST‑1177: dp. 3,560; l. 445'; b. 621; dr. 18'; s. 17 k.; Cpl. 844; a. 6 31'; cl. Suffolk County)


Lorain County (LST‑1177) was laid down 9 August 1956 by the American Shipbuilding Co., Lorain, Ohio; launched 22 June 1957; sponsored by Mrs. Albert D. Baumhart, Jr., wife of Congressman Baumhart of Ohio; and commissioned at New Orleans 3 October 1958, Lt. Comdr. Robert E. Du Bois in command.


This larger, air‑conditioned, and even more versatile version of the World War II Landing Ship, Tank, conducted its shakedown out of Little Creek, Va., and in January 1959 joined PhibRon 6 for the first of many landing exercises on Onslow Beach, N.C. On 31 July her squadron steamed from Morehead City, N.C., with marines embarked for Mediterranean deployment with the 6th Fleet. Returning to Little Creek 10 February 1961, she concentrated on training with marines.


Each year she served several months with the Caribbean Ready Squadron. Such training proved its value during the 1962 Cuban missile crisis, when fully loaded, Lorain County remained on standby in the Caribbean from 22 October to 16 December Castro’s revolutionary pronouncements and his act of shutting off the Guantanamo water supply prevented any true relaxation of tension in the area, and in June 1965. Loraine County carried a marine heavy artillery company to Guantanamo.


Her Caribbean training in 1966 was highlighted by a visit to Aruba, Netherlands West Indies with PhibRon 4. 1967 saw further Caribbean training and landing exercises, and deployment to the Mediterranean from 30 March to 24 May. After further operations in the Caribbean in early 1968, Lorain County began overhaul at Norfolk on 24 June. On 2 December she left the yard and prepared for refresher training into 1969.