For this Independence Day weekend we decided to visit the USS LST 325 Memorial in Evansville, Indiana.
The USS LST 325 is the only operational LST in the United States. The LST's were built specifically for use during World War II and their use was limited to delivering troops, along with their artillery by water. After World War II they were no longer needed and were not preserved.
The LST 325 has a very unique story to it, as several World War II veterans went to Greece to bring this ship back to the USA to make a memorial out of it. This story is told in a History channel documentary which is played in the gift shop before your tour starts, so be sure to arrive early.
Tours run every hour on the hour and each tour lasts about an hour.
The cost for the tour is $10 for adults, $5 for ages 5-17, and under age 5 is free. There is also a donation box to donate to the memorial if you so wish.
Tours start in a small gift shop. You can also purchase beverages in the gift shop that you can take with you on the tour. Temperatures inside of the ship can reach over 100 degrees on hot days so a drink might be something you want to consider taking.
The tour takes you through all decks of the ship. You will be doing a lot of walking and there are several staircases. It's nothing to strenuous but something you might want to be aware of. Strollers are not allowed on the tour.
The LST 325 participated in D-Day and has two places where it was fired upon. This ramp that the troops exited onto the beach through may well have been the last sight for many boys. For me it was an excellent reminder of how our freedom isn't free.
The memorial has several items from World War II displayed. While this jeep may not have been in World War II however it's claim to fame is that it was used in the first Mash movie.
Our family really enjoyed the tour and would highly recommend it if you are in the area.