Harry J. AllstonOctober 28, 1925-August 16, 2006
March 3, 2002 - THIS IS A STATEMENT THAT I KEEP ON DISK FOR THOSE TIMES I AM ASKED:
“WHAT DID YOU DO IN THE WAR DADDY?” TYPE QUESTIONS.
At the age of eighteen, I was
inducted into the U.S. Navy and on 12/30/1943 and sent, by Lehigh Valley RR,
from Philadelphia, PA to the Sampson Naval Training Station, NY. I underwent
training for about five weeks. Was then transferred, on or about 2/2/1944, to
Camp Bradford, VA. I was assigned to LCT #001 (A Mark 5) at Camp Bradford, for
training. (I have a picture of the original LCT- 001).
Upon completion of training the crew traveled, by train, to Tonawanda, NY and picked up LCT #1019 (Mark 6). We sailed the LCT 1019 down the Erie Canal to Newport News. Was assigned to Flotilla Two. The LCT #1019 was then loaded, by a very large crane, onto the deck of LST #603 and we were transported, via LST #603, to Oran, Africa where we were 'dumped' in the Mediterranean.
Trained in landings at Algiers and then on to Tunisia where we were towed, by LCI, to Palermo, Sicily. More training and then in on the tail end of the invasion at Anzio, Italy. Moved up to Salerno then up to Naples for more training and eventually, loaded for Southern France. Had 3 Sherman tanks, 2 - 10 wheeler trucks, 2 jeeps and about 150 troops. Landed in Sardinia to allow troops to eat and bath in water.
Reloaded and on to Southern France. Went in to St. Tropez on the 2nd wave and then did much ship to shore. Mostly troops and equipment. Ports of call, while in the Mediterranean area, included Oran and Bizerte, North Africa. Palermo, Sicily. Naples & Leghorn, Italy. Sardinia and Corsica. St. Raphael, St. Tropez, and Marseilles, Southern France. Dates elude me but we returned to North Africa where we were loaded, by a ‘floating’ crane, onto the deck of LST #492 and returned to the states.
Harry in 1944
After a time we were assigned LCT #647, Flotilla 41, Group 122 for Pacific operations. This was loaded on LST #1080 in "THREE" sections!!! Two days out of Pearl Harbor the conflict ended. Upon our arrival in Pearl Harbor, we, the crew assembled the LCT in the water. If we had known that one of the connecting tanks would be our water supply, we might have taken more pains to make it water tight. Consequently, we drank salty water for about a year. Spent most of the time at Pearl Harbor in East Loch doing ship to shore.
To be rotated to the U.S. for discharge, I was transferred from the LCT-647 to LCT-654. (Nothing on my records to indicate this transfer) The LCT-654 was loaded onto the LST #47 (in one piece) and I was returned to the states for discharge. Our group was assigned to Flotilla #41, LCT Group 122.
Harry in 1991
The Uniform still fit!!!!
Some of the men I remember serving with were:
Herbert Reynolds, EM (Rhode Island
Ens. Gszell, LCT 1019 (East Orange, NJ)
Robert Mount, QM (Wounded by shrapnel in S. France)
Mike Dadonna, Cook (Philadelphia, PA)
Ens. Farmer, LCT 647
J Y Hoffman, SEA1 (Macon, GA)
Doug Huskins, GM
Don Calloway, SEA1
John Pomerski, MMM
Henry Hillier, COX (Bronx, NY)
John Ireland, ???
Robert March, SEA1
I started as F 2/C to SEA 2/C to SEA 1/C, to Coxwain and ended my tour as BM 2/C.
I am 76 years of age (10-28-1925) and in pretty good health. I try to stay active and do try to keep the 'gray matter' working.
=============================================================================Harry J. Allston, 80, of Reedley, died on August 16, 2006.
He was born October 28, 1925 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He proudly served in the U.S. Navy during WW II as a Boatswain second class on LCTs.
He served in Africa, Sicily, Italy and southern France.
On February 15, 1947 he married Marjorie Johnson in Hollywood, California.