The website www.ancestry.com, which is more commonly used for genealogical research, has databases of passengers and crew members of ships arriving in the port of New York, and several other U.S. ports of entry, for the period 1820-1957. Included in these databases are the crews of World War II merchant ships.
At ancestry.com I found a record for a Lyle W. Barnes, who arrived in New York City on 12 July 1945 aboard SS SEA BASS, which had sailed from Le Havre, France, on 3 July. He is listed as age 17 and, like most of the crew, had joined the ship in San Francisco on 29 May 1945. He was described as 5'10" tall, 160 lbs, and the total length of his service at sea was three months. Given his age and total service time, this was certainly his first voyage. He was not scheduled to be discharged from the ship at the port of arrival, so he would likely have remained with SEA BASS for her next voyage, whenever and wherever that might have been. His position in the ship's crew is listed as utility messman, meaning he was part of the so-called steward's department, the major duty of which was planning, preparing, serving and cleaning up after meals. The crew of SEA BASS totaled 80 men, of which 35 were steward's department staff, both numbers being unusually large for a merchant ship. This points to the likelihood that SEA BASS was operating as a troop ship, bringing servicemen home from Europe. Indeed other online sources (including http://www.armed-guard.com/ag96.html, which is on the Armed Guard website) list SEA BASS as a troop transport.
According to http://shipbuildinghistory.com/history/shipyards/2large/inactive/westernpipe.htm, SEA BASS was a C-3 cargo ship constructed by the Western Pipe and Steel Company in San Francisco, being completed on 31 March 1943 for the U.S. Maritime Commission. She was sold into private service in 1946, underwent several name changes, and was scrapped in 1973.
While I cannot find any more information about Lyle Barnes at ancestry.com, it is possible that he had more extensive merchant marine service. The U.S. Coast Guard was and is responsible for issuing merchant seaman documentation ("seamanís papers") so your father may very well be in the Coast Guard's records. You may be able to obtain his service records by contacting the Coast Guard's National Maritime Center, which maintains merchant marine personnel records, at:
U.S. Coast Guard National Maritime Center
Mariner Information (NMC-4)
100 Forbes Drive
Martinsburg, WV 25404
Telephone: (304) 433-3400
Submit as much identifying information as possible including name, date of birth, copy of death certificate if deceased, Social Security number, address, and Z or service number. (If you have any documents of his, a merchant mariner identification card has a serial number starting with the letter Z, hence the reference to Z number. A Z number would probably be the second most important piece of information, after the seaman's name, that you could provide to the Coast Guard. But if you don't have it, submit what information you have.) In your case you might also mention that he was a utility messman on SS SEA BASS in the period May-July 1945.
Ron Carlson, Webmaster
Armed Guard website www.armed-guard.com