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Page 9 text:
COAT OF ARMS The MOBILE insignia depicts and interweaves the relationship of her mission and the origin of her name. The four stars located in the border signify that the amphibious cargo ship MOBILE is the fourth United States ship to bear the name. The five flags serving as the background for the shield are reproductions taken from the seal of the City of Mobile. Alabama, for which the ship is named. The French Flag signifies the City ' s founding in 1702 by France. In 1763, Mobile was ceded to England only to be captured in 1 779 by Spain, who controlled it until 1 800 when the territory was regained by France. Thomas Jefferson acquired the city for the United States in 1 803 through the Louisiana Purchase. The Con- federate Flag represents MOBILE being a key shipping point for the South during the War Between the States. The shield occupying the major portion of the inner circle represents the armor which is the distinguished mark of the fighting man. The bend or diagonal stripe extending across the shield, dividing it into two portions, depicts the Navy and Marine Corps team concept which is fully realized in amphibious operations. The assault boat coxswains symbol represents the ability of USS MOBILE to land her troops and equipment through the combined efforts of her men, boats, and modern cargo handling systems. The alligator, with its ability to fight on both land and sea, has long been the adopted symbol of the amphibious forces. He is in a rampant position representing a raging posture of attack with jaws open and teeth bared.
Page 11 text:
The amphibious cargo ship MOBILE is the fourth U.S. Naval vessel to bear the name MOBILE. The first was the sidew heel steamer, originally named Tennes- see, captured in New Orleans and then operated as part of Admiral David Farragut ' s fleet during the Civil War. The second was a German merchant vessel held in port and used briefly as a troop transport during the first World War. A light cruiser was the third to carry the name. Con- tracted to Newport News Shipbuilding and Drydock Company in July 1940, MOBILE ' S keel was laid on 14 April 1941. She was christened on 15 May 1942 and commissioned on 24 March 1943. Following a short training period, the cruiser turned toward the Pacific. MOBILE participated in her first ac- tion against the enemy in a carrier strike on Marcus Is- land on 31 August 1943. From then, until the end of hos- tilities, she saw no fewer than thirteen " star " actions, but through alertness, excellent seamanship and good for- tune, she managed to avoid any combat damage. The cruiser, seldom idle, alternated between bom- bardments of enemy held islands, amphibious opera- tions, acting as a radar-reporting vessel and service with the fast Carrier Task Forces. She participated in such famous battles as Tarawa, Wake Island, the Marshall and Gilbert Islands, Iwo Jima, Okinawa, Guam, and the Philippines. Following the war, MOBILE was placed in the re- serve fleet at Bremerton. In 1959, she was sold and scrapped along with several other famous Newport Newsbuilt warships, including the venerable AUGUSTA. The USS MOBILE (LKA-115) became an integral part of a balanced, mobile and modern 20 knot amphibi- ous force of the U.S. Navy on 20 September 1969 when she was commissioned and became a unit of the U.S. Pacific Fleet. MOBILE ' S keel was laid on 1 5 January 1 968, and the ship was launched on 19 October 1968. An LKA, amphibious cargo ship, is designed to transport and land combat equipment and material, with attendant personnel, in amphibious assaults. Navy car- go ships such as MOBILE have a most impressive record of achievement in providing support for forces ashore and afloat. MOBILE perpetuates such a proud heritage. Armed with 11 assault boats and improved cargo handling systems, the 575 foot, 20 knot MOBILE pos- sesses a powerful capability for supporting amphibious assaults that is beyond the reach of older LKA type ships. Her " Mike 8 " boats, capable of landing 60 ton tanks, are the largest landing craft now hoisted aboard a Navy ship. Her improved cargo handling systems in- clude 1 2 booms, of which 2 have a 70 ton lifting capacity; special elevators; and an enlarged helicopter platform. The engine room can now be handled by 5 or 6 men in- stead of 14 because of the automated system. Air conditioning aids comfort throughout the ship, including roomy living quarters for a 330 man crew and 226 troops, recreation rooms and library. Besides wartime victories, LKA ' s have accom- plished significant peacetime achievements. They have been visible symbols of " power for peace " statesman- ship in times and places of crisis; they have brought med- ical care, food and supplies to persons stricken by hurri- canes, floods and earthquakes; they have rescued sea- farers in peril on stormy oceans; and they have been goodwill emissaries to other nations.
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