LPH-11 (USS NEW ORLEANS) - purple shirt here. What a pain when the Marine units came aboard and bought out the ship's store and layed about everywhere. Or maybe you were on a smaller LPD or LST or now LSD? Still, I was proud to be their "sea-going bellhop". Gotta love our Marines.
Just researched LPH-11 and found she was used as target practice and sunk in 2010 some 70 miles off Kaua'i. She was my home for (3)years back in the 70's. Makes me a little sad. Guess better to be blown up than being scrapped for junk metal.
I still remember every inch of that flight deck and every time I had to run across it to fuel the Cobra's, Huey's, Chinooks, Sea Stallions - also some Harriers. Think FOD walks in o'dark thirty. Can't count the number of times I ate dry cheese sandwiches on deck and peed off the side of the re-fueling station. Miss those times, except for the countless fire-fighting drills and how bad everyone smelled from the heat of the orient. Are you a Shellback?
I was on two LPDs (DUBUQUE and JUNEAU), two LSTs (BRISTOL COUNTY and SAN BERNARDINO), an LKA (ST LOUIS) and an LSD (CARTER HALL). Only the last is still in commission. The LSTs were sold to foreign navies and the LKA is in mothballs at Pearl Harbor. I don’t know the status of the LPDs. They were rode hard for 40+ years and put away wet.
I was able to cross the equator on every ship I was on, including the only non-gator, an FFG. I am a Golden Shellback-BRISTOL COUNTY crossed at 0° and 180° enroute from Guadalcanal to Pearl Harbor. I was King Neptune on my last crossing (actually the CMC was a senior shellback but he was required to be a safety observer for the ceremony.)
For my job (QM) amphibs were challenging ships. Lots of inshore navigation and of course beaching on the LSTs. I enjoyed them very much.