Preservation, Education, and Commemoration of Naval History
On 21 May 1944 during preparations for the invasion of Saipan, an accidental ordnance blast on LST 353 set off cataclysmic ammunition explosions at West Loch, Pearl Harbor, killing 163 and injuring 396. Six tank landing ships (LST 39, LST 43, LST 69, LST 179, LST 353, LST 480), three tank landing craft (LCT 961, LCT 963, LCT 983), and 17 track landing vehicles (LVTs) were destroyed in the resulting explosions and fires. In this photo, some LSTs are manuevering in the foreground, leaving the vicinity of the explosions and fire, while other ships have yet to get underway. National Archives image 80-G-276907.
The Marianas Operation Phase I: Saipan
This multi-part World War II documentary, produced by the United States Marine Corps in 1944, provides a detailed examination of the campaign to take the Marianas from the Japanese. Initial landings began on 15 June 1944. Source: Naval History and Heritage Command, UM-24.