USS Racine (LST-1191)
USS Racine underway
|Ordered:||15 July 1966|
|Builder:||National Steel and Shipbuilding Company|
|Laid down:||13 December 1969|
|Launched:||15 August 1970|
|Acquired:||17 June 1971|
|Commissioned:||9 July 1971|
|Decommissioned:||2 October 1993|
|Struck:||1 December 2008|
|Fate:||Sunk as a target during RIMPAC 2018 on 12 July 2018|
|Class and type:||Newport-class tank landing ship|
|Beam:||70 ft (21.34 m)|
|Draft:||19 ft (5.79 m)|
|Speed:||over 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)|
|Capacity:||19,000 sq ft (1,765.2 m2), capacity of 29 tanks or 30 AAVs.|
|Troops:||Marine detachment: 360 plus 40 surge|
|Complement:||14 officers, 210 enlisted|
USS Racine (LST-1191) was the second ship to bear the name of the Wisconsin city. She was the thirteenth of 20 ships of the improved Newport class of Landing Ship, Tank (LST) built to replace the traditional bow door design LSTs of World War II. She was capable of a sustained speed of 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph). A stern gate to her tank deck permitted unloading of tracked assault amphibious vehicles (AAV) into the water, or the unloading of other vehicles into a landing craft utility (LCU), onto a pier, or directly into the water. Her ability to adjust her draft, accompanied by her unique 110-foot (34 m) long 75-ton capacity bow-ramp design and her bow thruster, helped bring a new degree of responsiveness and supply to the amphibious fleet.
Racine was laid down by the National Steel & Shipbuilding Co., at their yard in San Diego, California on 13 December 1969 and launched on 15 August 1970; sponsored by Mrs. Edwin B. Hooper, wife of Vice Admiral Edwin B. Hooper USN (Ret), Director of Naval History. Racine was placed in commission on 9 July 1971, Commander Daniel W. Anderson in command.
Racine remained at Long Beach, California completing her fitting-out until 9 August, when she departed for San Diego. Racine underwent tests and participated in exercises off the West coast until 8 June 1972. At that time, she steamed out of San Diego for a South American cruise with a group of Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC) midshipmen. She visited Valparaiso, Chile; Callao, Peru; and the Panama Canal Zone, returning to San Diego 17 July. On 13 September, she embarked on a tour of duty with WestPac. She remained in the Far East, shuttling men and material between Vietnam and various American bases in the area, until 26 April 1973, when she weighed anchor for San Diego. Racine arrived at San Diego 17 May 1973.
On 6 November 1979, Racine collided with Li Tung Sol, a small fishing vessel. No injuries were reported.
Racine had five Western Pacific deployments in the first 10 years after her commissioning, including deployments during the Vietnam War. In January 1981, Racine was assigned to the Naval Reserve Force with 60% of the crew active duty and 40% of the crew reservists. After 15 January 1981, Racine was assigned to Surface Squadron One homeport of Long Beach, California.
Racine was decommissioned on 2 October 1993 was placed in inactive reserve at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. In 2009, there was discussion of a possible sale of ex-Fresno and ex-Racine to Peru. This plan did not materialize and ex-Fresno was sunk as a target in 2014. Ex-Racine was listed as "Reported to MARAD for scrap sale" as of January 2015 with disposal preparations completed 25 November 2013. In January 2018 it was announced that Racine would be used as a target during RIMPAC 2018.
On 12 July 2018, ex-Racine was struck by live fire from aircraft, a submarine, and land assets as part of a sinking exercise (SINKEX) involving units from Australia, Japan, and the United States. Ex-Racine was sunk by a Royal Australian Air Force Boeing P-8 Poseidon and the US Navy Los Angeles-class submarine USS Olympia at 8:45 p.m. in waters 15,000 feet (4,600 m) deep, 55 nautical miles (102 km) north of Kauaʻi, Hawaii. This was the first firing of a Harpoon missile from an Australian P-8A Poseidon.
- Vietnam Service Medal 11 November 1972 to 13 November 1972, 19 November 1972 to 23 November 1972 and 5 February 1973 to 15 February 1973
- Navy E Ribbon for 1 July 1977 to 31 December 1978
- Navy E Ribbon for 1 January 1979 to 30 June 1980
- Navy Expeditionary Medal for 8 August 1980 to 11 October 1980, Iran / Indian Ocean.
- This article includes information collected from the Naval Vessel Register, which, as a U.S. government publication, is in the public domain. The entry can be found here.
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