Steward's Mate First Class, LST 523
Steward’s Mate 1stClass Ferdinand A. Glapion Jr. was an African American from New Orleans who served in the U.S. Navy during World War II. The eldest of nine children, he grew up in a French Creole family and worked at an market before joining the Naval Reserve. He believed he could be of service to his country by joining the military, even though he was too young to join without his parent’s consent. Though reluctant at first, his father finally consented and Glapion joined the Naval Reserve.
In late June 1945, Glapion’s father received a telegram that stated on June 6, 1945, his son was aboard LST 523 (Landing Ship Tank), which hit an enemy mine while landing near Omaha Beach. The ship was damaged so severely by the mine explosion that she sank almost immediately after being hit. Glapion’s body was never found. He was declared Missing in Action, and dead on June 20, 1945, Buried at Sea.
Awards: Purple Heart
Ferdinand A. Glapion Jr. is memorialized on the Walls of the Missing at Normandy American Cemetery.