Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Adonis (LST-83)

(LST-83: dp. 3,960; l. 328'; b. 50'; dr. 11'2"; s. 11.6 k.; cpl. 250; a. 8 40mm., 8 20mm.; cl. Achelous)

A handsome youth in Greek mythology who was loved by Aphrodite. While still young, Adonis was slain by a wild boar sent by the jealous Ares.

LST-83 was laid down at Jeffersonville, Ind., on 31 March 1943 by the Jeffersonville Boat & Machine Co.; launched on 14 June 1943; sponsored by Mrs. Frank R. Akhurst; commissioned on 6 August 1943 at Algiers, La., for transportation to Baltimore, Md.; decommissioned on 21 August 1943 for conversion by the Bethlehem Steel Co. for service as a landing craft repair ship; redesignated ARL-4 on 26 August 1943 and simultaneously named Adonis; and placed in commission on 12 November 1943, Lt. Matthew E. Thompson in command.

The new landing craft repair ship soon sailed to Norfolk, Va., for shakedown training and carried out exercises in Chesapeake Bay. She then made a cruise to New York City and finally ended her training period at Boston, Mass., on the last day of the year. Adonis departed Boston on 3 January 1944 with a convoy bound for Halifax, Nova Scotia. The ships arrived in Halifax on the 6th and put out to sea again on 14 January beginning a transatlantic voyage to Great Britain.

The convoy reached Milford Haven, Wales, on 31 January. Two days later, Adonis got underway for Devonport, England. She dropped anchor there on 5 February and commenced providing repair services to fleet units. She remained at Devonport until 26 May and then moved to Portland harbor. However, only a few days later, she was ordered to proceed to the assault area off the Normandy beachhead in France.

Adonis got underway for her trip across the English Channel on 7 June, the day after D day. She arrived off Omaha beach on the 8th and began providing repair services to damaged amphibious vessels. Rough seas made the work difficult, and the repair ship frequently changed her anchorage to avoid shellfire from enemy shore batteries. On 1 August, she cleared the area and headed back to England for repairs at Falmouth.

The ship returned to the French coast on 25 August, anchored off Utah beach, and resumed her repair work. On 1 November, she sailed to Cherbourg, France, to pick up stores and equipment and returned to the waters off Omaha beach on the 4th. She remained there for 10 days and was then ordered back to England.

Adonis reached Devonport on 15 November, resumed her maintenance work, and remained at that port through 5 May 1945. After a pause at Belfast, Northern Ireland, the ship began her voyage back to the United States and reached her home port, Norfolk, on 31 May. Upon her arrival, the vessel was overhauled and then conducted sea trials and exercises in the Chesapeake Bay.

The repair ship made a run to Davisville, R.I., on 22 July to take on a load of pontoons and sailed for the Pacific two days later. She transited the Panama Canal on 4 August and, while en route to San Diego, Calif., received word of Japan's capitulation. After reaching San Diego on the 17th, she unloaded the pontoons at Port Hueneme, Calif., on the 27th, and got underway for Hawaii.

Upon her arrival at Pearl Harbor on 6 September, Adonis set to work converting LSM's and LCI's into troop carriers which could be used to help return military personnel to the United States. She remained in Hawaiian waters through 25 October, when the ship shaped a course for Guam where she operated until early December. She got underway for China on the 3d, and reached Shanghai on the 12th, remainig there into early 1946.

Upon leaving Shanghai on 14 March 1946, Adonis visited the Chinese ports of Taku, Chinwangtao, Hulutao, and Tsingtao. She departed the latter city on 25 April and set a course for the west coast of the United States. The ship reached Astoria, Oreg., on 18 May and, shortly thereafter, began preparations for her deactivation. Adonis was decommissioned on 11 October 1946 and was assigned to the Columbia River Group, Pacific Reserve Fleet, Portland, Oreg. The ship remained inactive there until her name was struck from the Navy list on 1 January 1960. She was sold to Mr. Virgil Gene Thomas of California on 14 October 1960.

Adonis won one battle star for her World War II service.

Published: Thu Jul 09 15:31:18 EDT 2015