Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Avocet II (LCIL-653)

(LCIL-653: dp. 387 (f.); l. 159'0"; b. 23'8"; dr. 5'8"; s. 14.4 k.; cpl. 40; a. 5 20mm.; cl. LCIL-351)

A long-legged, web-footed shore bird possessing a slender, up-curved bill, found in western and southern states.


The second Avocet was laid down as LCIL-653 on 14 June 1944 at Barber, N.J., by the New Jersey Shipbuilding Corp.; launched on 14 July 1944; and commissioned on 21 July 1944.

Assigned to the Pacific during the last year of World War II, LCIL-653 served in the Philippines in the spring of 1945. Sheparticipated in the occupation of many of the smaller islands around Mindanao and of those that comprise the Sulu Archipelago. After the war, the ship returned to the United States and was placed out of commission, in reserve, on 6 June 1946. On 7 March 1952, LCIL-65,'1 was reclassified as a minehunter and was redesignated AMCU-16. That same day, she was named Avocet. Her conversion began on 1 July 1953 at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, and she was recommissioned there on 9 December 1953, Lt. James E. McMullen in command.

However, her return to active duty proved brief. For less than 15 months, Avocet operated out of San Diego conducting experiments for the Naval Electronics Laboratory. She also served as a sonar training ship and participated in mine hunting exercises. On 23 February 1955, she arrived in San Francisco where she began preparations for inactivation. While undergoing inactivation overhaul, she was reclassified as a coastal mine-hunter with the designation MHC-16. Avocet was towed to Stockton, Calif., on 5 May 1955 and was decommissioned there on 20 May 1955. Her disposal was approved on 21 December 1959, and her name was struck from the Navy list on 1 January 1960.

Avocet earned one battle star during World War II as LCIL-653.

Published: Fri Jun 19 12:53:04 EDT 2015