The USS Forrest Sherman (DD-931) remained on the Navy list for three and a half decades in the mid-to-late 20th century. She was named for Admiral Forrest Percival Sherman, a naval aviator who commanded Wasp during the Second World War. Forrest Sherman was the lead ship of her destroyer class.
Forrest Sherman was laid down at Bath, Maine by the Bath Iron Works Corporation in October 1953, launched in February 1955, and commissioned in November with Commander Russell S. Crenshaw, Jr., in command. Carrying a crew of 324, Forrest Sherman was 418 feet, six inches long and armed with four three-inch rapid fire guns, two anti-submarine mortars, four 21-inch torpedo tubes, and six 12.75-inch anti-submarine torpedo tubes.
Forrest Sherman arrived at Newport, Rhode Island in January 1957, her home port, after a year of training. The destroyer was available for public visits during the second inauguration of President Dwight D. Eisenhower, and then participated in training and fleet exercises until the summer. Forrest Sherman then embarked on a midshipman training voyage to South America, and took part in NATO exercises off Norway in September.
Following exercises off Puerto Rico in July 1958, Forrest Sherman was deployed to the eastern Mediterranean for patrol duty, and then operated off Taiwan. Forrest Sherman completed this cruise around the world in November. In the summer of 1959, the destroyer participated in celebrations marking the opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway, and then escorted HMS Brittania with the United States President and Queen Elizabeth II during visits to ports on the Great Lakes.
Forrest Sherman then conducted coastal exercises after returning to Newport, reported to the Boston Naval Shipyard for minor repairs and alternations, and then resumed training exercises in 1960. Duty with the 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean for seven months followed and, while Forrest Sherman was en-route back to the United States, she transported an injured man from Liberian freighter Allen Cristensen to Bermuda. The destroyer was then overhauled at Boston, and remained in commissioned with the U.S. Navy until November 1982. Struck from the Navy list in July 1990, Forrest Sherman is currently being developed as a museum ship.
Asbestos Risk on the USS Forrest Sherman (DD-931)
Because asbestos was used in so many applications, the toxic fibers could be found in almost every compartment on the USS Forrest Sherman. Some ship areas, however, contained higher concentrations of asbestos than others. Asbestos was installed as insulation for boilers, power plants, and engines. Asbestos could be found in such a wide variety of products that even areas of the vessel with no heavy equipment in them often posed a threat of asbestos exposure to those working in them.
Prolonged exposure to asbestos insulation and other asbestos products, and particularly broken or brittle asbestos, amplifies a person's risk of developing mesothelioma. Ships with a long service history pose an even higher risk, as their asbestos-containing material that becomes worn or damaged can become "friable". Material containing asbestos in a friable state is substantially more hazardous because asbestos fibers can become airborne where they can be absorbed into the lungs.
Legal recourse exists for those living with mesothelioma or other ailments caused by asbestos. We have created a comprehensive mesothelioma information kit to assist you in understanding what options may be available to you. If you or a loved one has been diagnosed with mesothelioma, take a moment to fill in the form on this page and we'll mail you an information kit, at no cost to you.Sources
Haze Gray & Underway. Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships. DD-931.
(http://www.hazegray.org/danfs/destroy/dd931txt.htm) Retrieved 24 February 2011.
NavSource Naval History. Forrest Sherman (DD-931).
(http://www.navsource.org/archives/05/0205.htm) Retrieved 24 February 2011.