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USS Cone (DD-866)

The USS Cone (DD-866) was a Gearing-class destroyer in the U.S. Navy named in honor of Rear Admiral Hutch Ingham Cone (1871-1941).


Built at Staten Island, New York, by the Bethlehem Steel Corporation, she was launched in May 1945, and commissioned in August.

Naval History

Cone paid a visit to Portsmouth, England, departing in April 1946, before returning stateside. Following a week stopover at Newport, Rhode Island, Cone steamed to ports in northern and southern Europe on a goodwill tour. After returning to Newport in October, she conducted maneuvers off the east coast and in Caribbean waters. Her home port was Norfolk, Virginia, until the summer of 1947, at which time Cone trained midshipmen as she sailed to northern Europe. Cone resumed exercise training and carried out operations along the east coast and in the Caribbean between several missions, including her first tour of duty in the Mediterranean with the 6th Fleet in 1948. She served with the United Nations Palestine Patrol during her subsequent return to Mediterranean waters in 1949. It was during this year that Cone traversed the Arctic Circle during exercises.

In 1951, Cone sailed to Greece, transporting United States and British Ambassadors to a diplomatic meeting. This Mediterranean cruise was highlighted by a visit from Winston Churchill at Venice in September. In 1953, Cone joined TF 77 and patrolled the seas off Korea until her return to Norfolk in April 1954. Cone joined NATO forces and participated in antisubmarine exercises off the coast of Ireland during Operation Blackjack. During 1955, Cone focused on air defense maneuvers and performed as plane guard for aircraft carriers. She joined NATO exercises in the Mediterranean before returning home in June 1956. Cone joined a task force and stood by during the Suez Crisis until it was determined her services were not needed. For the remainder of her career, Cone served with the 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean, operated in the Caribbean, and patrolled northern European waters during NATO exercises.

On 1 October 1982, Cone was decommissioned and stricken from the Naval Vessel Register. She was transferred to Pakistan and rechristened Alamgir. The former Cone was decommissioned in December 1998 and scrapped.

Asbestos Risk on the USS Cone (DD-866)

Aboard Cone asbestos was used in most sections, both as insulation and wrapped around steam pipes. The engine and power plant compartments of Cone deployed significant amounts of asbestos materials around steam pipes, to line steam boilers, and to insulate elements of the ship's motors or power plant. Even compartments of Cone not containing machinery were potentially contaminated by asbestos fibers, as insulated pipes ran the length and breadth of the vessel.

Asbestos-containing material that is worn or damaged, often in a refit, can become friable. This means that individual mineral fibers in the insulation can be torn from the surrounding material and then may be inhaled into the lungs or ingested. Exposure to these asbestos fibers is the only known cause of mesothelioma. There are generally legal options for servicemen who have suffered asbestos injuries.



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