As of Monday morning, the LST has left Evansville, and will not be back for two months.
It is headed to Port Arthur, Texas where it will be in dry dock for six weeks to undergo routine maintenance and repairs.
"Dry docking takes place about every 10 years to maintain the integrity of the ship and maintain its status as a sailing vessel," said Chris Donahue, a member of the USS LST Ship Memorial Board of Directors. "Some extensive refurbishing will be performed on the bow and the hull of the ship, as well as other areas."
The 70-year-old warship is in generally good condition, but Donahue said any operational ship requires routine maintenance. The vessel was inspected by the U.S. Coast Guards Thursday and received approval to depart for Texas.
Donahue said the LST 325 will sail down the Ohio River to Cairo, Ill., then down the Mississippi River to Louisiana. From there the ship will take the Intracoastal Waterway to Port Arthur, Texas. The trip is expected to take about seven to eight days one-way.
Approximately 50 crew members will be onboard the ship as it sails to Texas. Donahue said most of the crew will return to Evansville by bus. Once the repair work is complete, the crew will go back to Texas to board the ship for its voyage back to Evansville.
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