The Crew
About The Landing Craft Infantry



February - May 1944

February 6 - 26, 1944

Bizerte, Tunisia
While the LCI 35 was in dry dock in Bizerte, Dad wrote a number of letters to his sister Mae. Most of the letters dealt with personal matters going on at home, however, a few contained information on his thoughts, feelings and ambitions.

While Task Group 81.1 continued to operate in the Naples Area a number of Flotilla Two LCIs were directed to Bizerte including the following:

LCIs: 9,13, 15, 212, 213, 214, 215, 216, 217, 35, and 231.

LCIs: 9, 13, 15, 35, 216, and 231 were given all available aid for reconditioning.

February 26 - April 3, 1944

Bizerte and Tunis Tunisia - Naples Italy

LCI (L) 35 remained in Bizerte until February 26th when it traveled to Tunis for additional repair work and then to the Naples area until April 3rd.

LCI 35 Docked in Bizerte

The LCI 35 Docked at Bizerte, Africa


February 26, 1944
LCIs 13, 35 and 231 were dry docked in Tunis.

February 1944
Other WW II Action and Notable Events
February 7, 1944
Germans launched a counter-offensive at Anzio
February 20, 1944
US bombers began raiding German aircraft manufacturing centers in a series of attacks that became known as "Big Week"

March 1944

Bizerte and Tunis, Tunisia
While the ship was in dry dock being repaired, Dad and his other shipmates tried to enjoy themselves as much as possible. Here are some photos taken probably at some night spot in Tunis, Tunisia.

John Laga, Stanley Galik, Frank Roachell with Unidentified Persons in Tunis, Tunisia

John Laga (Top Left), Dad (Front Center), Frank Roachell (Top Right) with Unidentified Persons in Tunis, Tunisia


Pozzouli, Italy
Sometime in March 1944, after being reconditioned, the LCI (L) 35 returned to the Naples area (Pozzouli) to continue operations with Flotilla Two and Task Group 81.1.

March 1944
Other WW II Action and Notable Events
March 6, 1944
US heavy bombers staged the first American raid on Berlin
March 15, 1944
Allied bombers again raided German-held Monte Cassino
March 24, 1944
In occupied Rome, the Nazis executed more than 300 civilians in reprisal for an attack by Italian partisans the day before that killed 32 German soldiers

April 1944

April 3 - 15, 1944

Back to Bizerte, Tunisia
On April 3rd Flotilla Two was ordered to Bizerte. LCIs 75, 173, and 238 were added to the Flotilla raising the total number of LCIs in Flotilla Two to 30.

Oran, Algeria

April 13 -20, 1944

On April 15th Flotilla Two proceeded to Oran, Algeria and reported to the Com 12th Fleet on its arrival on April 17th.

Map of Gulf of Arzew

Map of Gulf of Arzew

April 20, 1944
At 0300 on April 20th Flotilla 2, including LCI (L) 35, left Oran as part of Task Group 81.13 and joined convoy MKS 46 for England. The convoy arrived in the Straits of Gibraltar on April 21st. On April 28th the convoy received it's orders: "Your destination in UK is Penarth".

April and May 1944 Other WW II Action and Notable Events
April 22, 1944 US forces began invading Japanese-held New Guinea with amphibious landings near Hollandia
May 11, 1944 American forces launched a major offensive against German lines in Italy
May 18, 1944 Allied forces finally occupied Monte Cassino in Italy after a four-month struggle that claimed some 20,000 lives




Bizerte Ferry


The photo above was taken while on the Bizerte Ferry traveled from Bizerte, Tunisia to the other side of Bizerte Lake. Dad noted the Arabic lettering on the ferry's railing.

John Laga, Stanley Galik, and Frank Roachell in Tunis, Tunisia (Feb-Mar 1944)

John Laga (L), Dad (Center)

and Frank Roachell (R)

Tunis, Tunisia

February-March 1944

Arab Women


The picture above of 2 unmarried Arab women was given to Dad in March 1944 by Frank and Bill, owners of Plasmaflot Studios.
Although they were in Oran, Algeria for only a few days, the LCI (L) 35 crew seemed to enjoy themselves as the photos below show.  After arriving in Oran on April 17, 1943, the crew was awaiting word on their next assignment.
Before Sailing for England


BEER - 1

Left to Right:2 Unidentified Sailors (L), Clarence Robins (Center), Ed Byrd, 2nd from Right, and Al Peters (Far Right).

Clarence Robins Enjoying a Beverage



Before Sailing for England


BEER - 2

Left to Right: John Murray (MM1, LCI 211), with Clarence Robins, Ed Byrd, and George MacNeal of the LCI 35). 

The unidentified sailor may be John H. Murray MM1 from the LCI 211.  (John's son identified his father as being in the photo.  John also mentioned that his father was injured at Salerno when his ship was hit by a German bomb.  John was the forward 20MM gunner at battle stations for the LCI 211.)

Farewell Africa  - Destination Penarth, UK

"Your destination in UK is Penarth"
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