The USS Sphinx group held their 30th consecutive reunion in Branson, with veteran attendees ranging from WWll, Korea, Vietnam and Central America.
“We are excited to be spending our 30th consecutive reunion in Branson, with shipmates from as early as 1945 through 1989, the entire life of the USS Sphinx,” said Dennis Klein, group coordinator and USS Sphinx Central America veteran. “Some as old as 95 and some as young as mid 40’s.”
According to the group, USS Sphinx participated in the atom bomb tests at Bikini Atoll.
During the Korean War, she participated in Operation “Passage to Freedom” relocating approximately 300,000 refugees from Hiaphong to Saigon, Vietnam. During the Vietnam conflict, she operated in the Mekong River Delta area and was then painted green.
The USS Sphinx reunion was held from Sept. 8-13 at Westgate Branson Woods Resort. This group has been staying at that resort since 2016.
For more information you can check out usssphinx.com, or their Facebook page ‘USS Sphinx ARL-24’.
USS Sphinx ARL-24 history, provided by the USS Sphinx group:
1944: Built in Hingham, Mass. at Bethlehem Shipyard as LST 963.
1945: Converted to ARL-24 at Merrill Stevens Drydock Jacksonville, FL, Commissioned May 10. Voyaged to Cuba, Panama Canal, San Diego, Oakland, San Francisco, Pearl Harbor. War ended as she was enroute to Adak, Ominato in Mutsu Bay, Japan in September, Yokosuka, Saipan.
1946: Saipan, Guam, Eniwetok. A bomb test at Eniwetok Marshall Islands, Kwajalien, Pearl Harbor.
1947: Decontaminated in San Pedro, decommissioned in San Diego.
1948-49: Reserve fleet San Diego.
1950: Recommissioned in November in San Diego.
1951: Pearl Harbor, Yokosuka (Typhoon Ruth), Sasebo, Muroran, Hokkaido, Japan.
1952: Sasebo, Yokosuka, Muroran Hokkaido, Kobe, Cheju-do Korea.
1953: San Diego, Mare Island.
1954: San Diego, Yokosuka, Saseto, Buckner Bay, Okinawa.
Jun-Dec. “Operation Passage to Freedom”, 3000,000 refugees from Hiaphong to Siagon
1955: California Coast.
1956-66: Decommissioned in reserve at San Diego.
1967: Towed to New Orleans through Panama Canal, recommissioned.
1968: New Orleans, Panama Canal, San Diego, Pearl Harbor, Kusaie, Guam, Subic Bay Philippines, Vung Tau and Dong Tam, Mekong Delta, Vietnam.
1969: Tien Gieng, Ham Luong and Van Co Rivers, Vietnam, Sasebo, Japan.
1970: Mekong River, Vietnam, Kaoshieng, Taiwan.
1971: Sasebo, Yokosuka, Vietnam, Brenerton, WA. decommissioned.
1972-84: Mothballed, Bremerton, WA.
1985: Recommissioned Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, in July 1985.
West coast of Central America, Nicaragua.
1986: Through Panama Canal in April, transferred to Atlantic Fleet, Norfolk (Little Creek), VA.
1986-89: Carribean, Panama, Nicaragua, Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, Key West (home port 1988-89).
1989: Decommissioned Norfolk on June 16.
1990-1991: Reserve fleet, laid up Norfolk, VA.