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Garfield County LST-784

Garfield County

Counties in Colorado, Montana, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Utah, and Washington.

(LST-784: dp. 1,780 (lt.); 1. 328'; b. 60'; dr. 14'1";

s. 11.6 k.; cpl. 115; a. 8 4Omm., 12 20mm.; cl. LST 542)

LST-784 was laid down by Dravo Corp., Neville Island Pittsburgh, Pa., 18 June 1944; launched 29 July 1 sponsored by Mrs. Michael Ruzic and commissioned at New Orleans 1 September 1944, Lt. Daniel H. Miner, USCG, in command.

After shakedown off Florida, LST-784 ,departed departed New Orleans 4 - October Pearl Harbor 18 November. Following intensive amphibious training in the Hawaiian Islands, she sailed 22 January 1945 to join Pacific forces preparing for the landings at Iwo Jima. With marines of the 2d 155mm. Howitzer Battalion on board, LST-784 touched Eniwetok, Saipan, and Tinian before making her way to the enemy-held volcano fortress. She arrived off the beaches 19 February and anxiously awaited her turn to disembark her troops. For the next 3 weeks the ship remained in the area discharging cargo and performing post office duties for the fleet. Returning to Saipan 18 March, LST-784 commenced preparations for her next assignment.

In early April American forces were already engaged in the fierce campaign on Okinawa, and supplies and men to reinforce the beachhead were urgently needed. The LST arrived off the embattled island 27 April with a detachment of Seabees and equipment. Continuously at general quarters, she discharged her cargo and sailed 7 May for return to Saipan.

For the rest of the war LST-784 continued "milk runs" from the Philippines to Okinawa, transporting troops and equipment to reinforce the island. Upon the victorious conclusion of World War II, she engaged in the movement of men from the Philippines to Japan for occupation duty, She remained in the Far East until 11 November when LST-784 departed Saipan for the return cruise home. Steaming via Guam, she returned to the West Coast decommissioned in March 1946, and entered the Pacific Reserve Fleet to be berthed in the Columbia River at Astoria, Oregon. Named Garfield County 1 July 1955, she was used as a target ship in March 1959.