All aboard!

Share Your Story

Why Your Story Matters

Please consider providing the USS LCI National Association with your story by sharing your experiences while serving on a Landing Craft Infantry (LCI) during WW II.  Although we primarily are interested in your LCI experiences, we are also interested in the circumstances leading up to your entry into the Navy and the impact that your WW II experiences have had on your postwar life.

By providing us with as much information as possible, you will have done your country another good deed by shedding light and additional insight into the ways that individuals such as yourself have helped shape our past and our hope for the future.

Below are a series of questions that are intended to provide you with general guidance in sharing your story.

Hopefully, these questions will generate responses related to your experiences before, during, and after the war.  Please answer as many questions as you can.  Although you do not have to answer every question, every answer you can provide gives us a wealth of information and adds to our efforts to honor your service and will be greatly appreciated.

If you have difficulty in writing your responses or developing your story, either ask a family member to help you or contact any USS LCI National Association Officer or Executive Board member for assistance or simply send an email to thecrew@usslci.org and we'll be sure to get the help you need.  The Association is here to serve you.  Again, thank you for your service in WW II and for protecting our Freedom and way of life.

A downloadable version of this guide is also available in Microsoft Word or Adobe PDF format.

How to Submit Your Story

When you submit your story, please provide the following information in the event that we need to get in touch with you regarding your story or other Association matters.  The USS LCI National Association takes the privacy of your information seriously and will not share your personal information with outside entities.  This information WILL NOT be included in any published account of your story.

  • Name
  • Date of Birth
  • Address
  • LCI(s)
  • Home Phone
  • Cell Phone (indicate if preferred)
  • Email address
  • Secondary Contact Name, Address, Phone and Email Address (consider cc’ing them on any correspondence)

We look forward to hearing from you and publishing your story in the Elsie Item Newsletter or on the Association’s website:  www.usslci.org.

Thank you in advance for providing us with your recollections from over 70 years ago.

Please e-mail your story or your completed questionnaire as an attachment to lcistory@usslci.org or send it by regular mail to:

John France, President
USS LCI National Association
11621 Copper Spring Trail
Oro Valley, AZ  85737

Questions Related to Your Experiences

The questions below will cover the following topics:

  • Getting Ready-Enlistment
  • Basic and Other Training
  • Entering the War
  • Life on Board a LCI
  • Experiences During Invasions and Follow on Landings
  • War’s End and Coming Home

As mentioned earlier, you do not have to answer all the questions to provide us with a story.  However, the more answers you provide, the more we get to know of your experiences during the war. We look forward to your story.

Getting Ready-Enlistment

  1. When did you enlist? Where?
  2. Why did you join? How much did Pearl Harbor influence your decision? Did your parents approve of your decision? Were other family members in the military?
  3. Why did you pick the Navy?
  4. Where were you living at the time? With whom (parents, wife/children, other)? Did you have a girlfriend, a fiancée? Were you married? Did you get married or put off marriage because of the war?
  5. Were you working at the time? What was your job?
  6. How did you feel about leaving home?

Basic and Other Training

  1. What were your first days in the service like?
  2. Where did you go for Basic Training?
  3. After Basic Training, where did you receive additional training? What schools and special training were you involved in? What were you trained to do? How good was it in preparing you for what you later did in the war?
  4. What was the most helpful part of your training? What part of training stands out in your memory?
  5. Describe any memorable experience?
  6. How did you get through it?
  7. Did you feel you were well prepared for what you faced on the LCI?

Entering the War

  1. When did you go overseas? What was your port of embarkation for deployment?
  2. What was the ocean crossing like?
  3. How long did it take for you to reach your theater of operations? Where exactly did you arrive? What theater of operations were you in? What do you remember about your arrival?
  4. Did you receive any training after you were deployed overseas?
  5. What type of equipment were you issued before you were deployed overseas?

Life on Board a LCI

  1. What were your job/assignment/duties? What do you remember the most about your time on the LCI?
  2. How did you spend your “free time” on the LCI? At sea or in port? Did you visit any towns, cities, or sites while you were in port? Did you interact with the local population?
  3. What did you do for entertainment on the LCI? Did you or any of your shipmates have any special talent to entertain the crew? (Singing, playing musical instrument, comedy, etc.)

  4. Describe any unusual or humorous events while on board or while docked in port?
  5. What did you do when on liberty/leave?
  6. How did you stay in touch with your family? How often did you write home? Did anyone save your letters or V-mail? Did you save letters sent to you?
  7. How did you get news about how the war was going? From Commanding Officer? From Stars and Stripes Newspaper?
  8. How much sleep did you get?
  9. What package of “goodies” did you receive from home? Did you share these “goodies” with your shipmates?
  10. Did you keep a personal diary? Do you still have it?
  11. Do you have any photographs of yourself, the crew, or the LCI?
  12. What was the food like on board? Did you have a good cook? What was your favorite meal? What did the cook provide as a “special treat” for the crew?
  13. Did your LCI have plenty of supplies? Who did the bartering with other ships for any needed supplies?
  14. Did you admire your commanding officer? Did you admire the people you served with? Were they experienced? How did the Officers interact with the crew?  Who was looked up to as a leader among your shipmates?
  15. Who were the shipmates you were closest “buddies” with on the LCI?
  16. Did you see or experience any discrimination on the LCI?

 

Experience during Invasions and follow on landings

  1. What training did you receive in advance of any invasion?
  2. What was your assigned battle station during invasion landings or air raids?
  3. What were your thoughts during the actual landings of troops?
  4. Were there any injuries or casualties on your LCI? When did they occur? What were the circumstances?
  5. Were you or your LCI awarded any medals or citations? Describe the circumstances or reason for the award or citation. (Could check with Navsource.org for ship citations). – Officers may be asked about battle planning.

  6. Did you have any “good luck charms” or superstitions while on the LCI or before participating in any invasions?
  7. What invasions did you participate? Describe the greatest risk or danger you encountered during invasions. How did you cope with your fear, pressure or stress during your first and subsequent invasion landings? Which one would you consider the most dangerous or risky for your LCI?
  8. What weapon did the enemy use that frightened you the most?
  9. Was your LCI involved in any non-combat incidents? (Collision with another ship, anchors/cables tangled, run aground, etc.)

War’s End and Your Return Home

War’s End

  1. Where were you when you heard about the surrender of Germany? What was your reaction?
  2. How did you hear about the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki? Where were you? What was your reaction to the news?
  3. Where were you when you heard about the surrender of Japan? What was your reaction?
  4. What did you do on V-E and V-J Days?

Coming Home and Your Future

  1. When did you return to the US? How long did you serve overseas?
  2. What were your thoughts on the day you were discharged from the service?
  3. What did you do in days and weeks after you returned? Did you go back to school or straight to work? Did you marry?
  4. Was your education supported by the G.I. Bill?
  5. Did you form any close friendships with your shipmates. How long did you stay in touch with them after the war? Do you attend any reunions?
  6. What had changed and/or what was different when you got home from the war?
  7. Did you join a veteran’s organization after the war (VFW, American Legion)?
  8. What happened during the war that affected you for the rest of your life? How did it affect your outlook, your career choice, and your maturity?
  9. What are some of your most memorable experiences during WWII? What did you consider was your happiest, funniest or saddest memory of the war?
  10. What did you go on to do as a career after the war?

Is there any important question or comments that you would like to share with us that we did not cover in this questionnaire?