The USS Dyer (DD-84) was a Wickes-class destroyer in the U.S. Navy during the World War I. She was named for Nehemiah Mayo Dyer (1839-1910), a Rear Admiral in the U.S. Navy.
In September of 1917, Dyer was laid down at Quincy, Massachusetts, by the Fore River Shipbuilding Company. The completed vessel was launched six and a half months later in April 1918. Dyer was commissioned under the command of Commander F. H. Poteet in July 1918.
Dyer was assigned to U.S. patrol squadrons based at Gibraltar. In July 1918, she sailed from New York carrying Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the Assistant Secretary of the Navy and future president of the U.S., to Plymouth, England. In early August she began her service as escort for merchant convoys and Army transports between Gibraltar, England and Marseilles, France, making nine such voyages until the end of World War I in late 1918.
After World War I, in late January 1919, Dyer proceeded from Gibraltar for service with U.S. naval forces in the central and eastern Mediterranean. Dyer called at many ports including Split and Kotor in Dalmatia. Dyer visited Brindisi and Constantinople before continuing to Beirut. Dyer arrived in Venice, Italy in early February of the same year. From Venice, Dyer operated as flagship for a force taking part in relief activities in the Balkan Peninsula and the Middle East. Dyer carried passengers and supplies to locations in the Adriatic Sea and aided in the execution of the terms of the Austrian Armistice. In April of 1919, Dyer embarked for New York, arriving in June with two Members of Congress on board.
For thirteen months from the beginning of October 1919 to the end of October 1920, Dyer was in reserve and in reduced commission. She operated out of Charleston, South Carolina, until April 1922 when she sailed to the Philadelphia Navy Yard. Dyer was decommissioned there in June 1922 and sold September 1936.
Asbestos Risk on the USS Dyer (DD-84)
Asbestos was present on most U.S. Navy vessels by the time Dyer was commissioned. The mineral’s resistance to heat, flames, and corrosion made it ideal for use at sea. Asbestos insulation and fireproofing was likely featured in Dyer’s engine rooms and in her boilers. If your loved one served aboard this ship and later developed mesothelioma, his naval service likely contributed to his disease.Sources
USS Dyer (DD-84). Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships.