USS Lacerta (AKA-29)
|Builder:||Walsh-Kaiser Company, Providence, Rhode Island|
|Laid down:||5 July 1944|
|Launched:||10 November 1944|
|Commissioned:||19 December 1944|
|Decommissioned:||25 March 1946|
|1 battle star (WWII)|
|Fate:||Sold for scrapping, 18 August 1966|
|Class and type:||Artemis-class attack cargo ship|
|Length:||426 ft (130 m)|
|Beam:||58 ft (18 m)|
|Draft:||16 ft (4.9 m)|
|Speed:||17 knots (31 km/h; 20 mph)|
|Complement:||302 officers and enlisted|
Lacerta (AKA-29) was laid down under a Maritime Commission contract 5 July 1944 by Walsh-Kaiser Co., Inc., Providence, R.I.; launched 10 November 1944; sponsored by Mrs. Frank Bratley; acquired by the Navy 19 December 1944; and commissioned the same day, Lt. Comdr. Louis Funkenstein in command.
After shakedown, Lacerta cleared Norfolk 18 January 1945 for Pearl Harbor where she loaded hospital crew and cargo for the Solomon Islands. Arriving Guadalcanal 27 February, Lacerta discharged cargo and embarked troops for the Okinawa invasion. She departed Saipan 27 March for the operation that would advance American troops to a strategic position almost next door to Japan. Arriving in the transport area 1 April under heavy enemy air raids, the cargo ship remained off the southeast coast of Okinawa unloading supplies, 150 mm howitzers, and Marines from Guadalcanal for Marines fighting ashore.
Lacerta departed Okinawa 9 April for Saipan, where she remained until 3 June. In the months prior to Japan's surrender, she ferried cargo among the Solomon and Mariana Islands before arriving Manila 22 August. Loading troops and equipment there, Lacerta participated in the movement of occupation forces to Japan, arriving Yokohama 13 September. She then went to Hai Phong (French Indochina) took on 6,000 Chinese Nationalist troops (1,000 each in six ships) carrying them to Qinhuangdao at the northern tip of the Yellow Sea, remaining in the Far Fast until 19 November when she cleared Tsingtao, China, for Seattle.
After a short stay at Seattle, she left on 1 January 1946 Lacerta arrived Norfolk 12 February 1946 and decommissioned 25 March. She was returned to the Maritime Commission for disposal on 30 June 1946, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet, James River Group. Sold for scrapping to Union Minerals & Alloys Corporation on 18 August 1966.
- This article incorporates text from the public domain Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. The entry can be found here.