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NORFOLK NAVAL SHIPYARD, Portsmouth, Va. - Among the five classes of ships NNSY built or modernized to support the invasion of Normandy on June 6, 1944, the shipyard built 20 tank landing ships (LSTs), numbered LST-333 though LST-352. With each weighing in around 1,625 tons, these ships could traverse the ocean’s depths and also navigate shallow draft for moving troops, tanks and other equipment ashore. Their unique design featured a large door at the bow of the ship for the convenient unloading of vehicles, with no dock or pier required to engage in full assaults. Another distinguishing characteristic was their flat keels so they wouldn’t capsize on land. LSTs took part in the full range of World War II’s amphibious operations in Europe and the Pacific.


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