Preserving The Oral HistorIES of Combat Veterans

COMBAT STORIES FROM World War II

Tom Dill | USS LST-340 - Navy

5:45   |   When Tom Dill joined the Navy in 1943, the first stop was Northwestern University for three months of midshipman's training. He was next sent to the Small Craft Center in Miami and, finally, to Long Beach to await assignment. He became an officer on an LST, a new type of ship that became a vital part of amphibious warfare.

More From Tom Dill

Keywords   :     Tom Dill    Northwestern University    Midshipmen's school    Small Craft Training Center (SCTC)    Long Beach CA    Robert Montgomery    Hunters Point Naval Shipyard    General Electric (GE)    Paul Kluge

Videos ( 7 )
WWII
  • Tom Dill  |  WWII  |  USS LST-340  |  3:58

    It was a rough time getting through the end of the Depression, but Tom Dill was lucky enough to go to college after graduating in 1939. After being an alternate for an appointment to Annapolis, he went ahead and joined the Navy, anyway, in 1943.

  • Tom Dill  |  WWII  |  USS LST-340  |  3:30

    LST-340 had been fully repaired and headed for Hawaii with new officer Tom Dill on board. He participated in some landing exercises on Maui in preparation for the Mariana Islands operations. While staging in the Marshall Islands, which had already been secured, a party from the ship went ashore for some recreation and encountered a stray Japanese soldier.

  • Tom Dill  |  WWII  |  USS LST-340  |  4:37

    The men of LST-340 thought it must be more LST's in one place than ever as they assembled for the landings on Saipan. Then they found out about Normandy, which was happening at roughly the same time. Ship's officer Tom Dill describes his vessels cargo. LVT's, which were carrying Marine artillery, and a few "Ducks."

  • Tom Dill  |  WWII  |  USS LST-340  |  7:18

    After Saipan, the next landing was Tinian, coveted for its airfields. LST ship's officer Tom Dill recalls how the beachmaster, a Naval officer in charge of operations during an amphibious attack, refused his captain's request to move his ship because of rough water. This led to a sticky situation.

  • Tom Dill  |  WWII  |  USS LST-1050  |  4:18

    After his LST was grounded and abandoned, Tom Dill was sent to Virginia where he finally got training as an LST officer. This was after serving as one in combat. His next ship was a brand new LST that set out downriver from Pittsburgh to New Orleans. This trip was not without drama.

  • Tom Dill  |  WWII  |  USS LST-1050  |  3:18

    It was a brand new LST that Tom Dill was on for his second trip from California to the South Pacific. Ships and men were assembling at Guam, waiting for the word to proceed with the invasion of Japan. He was elated when the atomic bomb made that unnecessary. Many men were sent home but he had a little business to attend to in China.

  • Tom Dill  |  WWII  |  USS LST-1050  |  2:55

    His last task in the Pacific was training Nationalist Chinese personnel to receive and operate the ships that the US was turning over to them. Then, Tom Dill was allowed to return to North Carolina where he returned to law school.

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