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USS Du Pont (DD-941)
Du Pont off the coast of Lebanon, 1982.
Du Pont off the coast of Lebanon, 1982.
Career (US)
Namesake: Samuel Francis Du Pont
Ordered: 30 July 1954
Builder: Bath Iron Works
Laid down: 11 May 1955
Launched: 8 September 1956
Acquired: 21 June 1957
Commissioned: 1 July 1957
Decommissioned: 4 March 1983
Struck: 1 June 1990
Fate: Sold for scrap to International Shipbreaking Limited at Brownsville in Texas on 10 February 1999
General characteristics
Class & type: Forrest Sherman-class destroyer
Displacement: 2,800 tons standard.
4,050 tons full load.
Length: 407 ft (124 m) waterline, 418 ft (127 m) overall.
Beam: 45 ft (14 m)
Draft: 22 ft (6.7 m)
Propulsion: 4 x 1,200 psi (8.3 MPa) Babcock and Wilcox boilers, General Electric steam turbines; 70,000 shp (52 MW); 2 x shafts.
Speed: 32.5 knots (60.2 km/h)
Range: 4,500 nautical miles (8,300 km) at 20 knots (37 km/h)
Complement: 15 officers, 218 enlisted.
Armament: 3 x 5 in (127 mm)/54 calibre dual purpose Mk 42 guns; 4 x 3 in (76 mm)/50 calibre Mark 33 anti-aircraft guns; 2 x mark 10/11 Hedgehogs; 6 x 12.75 in (324 mm) Mark 32 torpedo tubes.

USS Du Pont (DD-941), named for Rear Admiral Samuel Francis Du Pont USN (1809–1866), was a Forrest Sherman-class destroyer built by the Bath Iron Works Corporation at Bath in Maine and launched by Mrs. H. B. Du Pont, great-great-grandniece of Rear Admiral Du Pont; and commissioned 1 July 1957, Commander W. J. Maddocks in command.

History[edit | edit source]

From 6 to 31 July 1958 Du Pont served on a midshipman cruise and antisubmarine exercises in the Atlantic, duty broken by a visit to New York. Du Pont sailed 2 September for a tour of duty with the 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean, during which she participated in highly realistic air defense and antisubmarine warfare problems. She returned to Norfolk 12 March 1959, to prepare for Operation "Inland Seas,"[1] the historic first passage of a naval task force into the Great Lakes through the Saint Lawrence Seaway. She escorted HMY Britannia with Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom embarked during the dedicatory ceremonies on 26 June.

Du Pont crossed the Atlantic in August and September 1959, visiting Southhampton, England, after serving as plane guard for the transatlantic flight of President Dwight D. Eisenhower. On 28 January 1960 Du Pont sailed from Norfolk for a second tour of duty with the 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean, returning on 31 August for an overhaul in the Naval Shipyard where she remained through the end of 1960.

In 1972, she won the Marjorie Sterrett Battleship Fund Award for the Atlantic Fleet. In 1979, the USS Du Pont was relocated to the Bethlehem Steel Works Ship Yard in Hoboken, New Jersey, where it underwent a major refit. In 1980, the ship got underway and was attached to Comdesron 2, under the command of Cmdr. Harlan K. Ullman.

Following the refit, the ship sailed for its home port of Norfolk, Virginia before going to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Under Cmdr. Ullman's command, the crew participated in two week's of reference training, simulating wartime conditions. The crew of the USS Du Pont received the highest honor Guantanamo Bay awards for battle efficiencies, being awarded three of the Battle "E's".

File:Mail Call Aboard Du Pont.jpg

Du Pont off the coast of Iran in Persian Gulf during Mail Call flight.

In 1981, Du Pont went to the Middle East, sailing through the Suez Canal into the Red Sea then to the Persian Gulf. The ship was assigned to the Nimitz battle group, remaining on patrol in the Persian Gulf following the release of American hostages held in Iran. The ship was continually on alert, as Iranian P-3 Orions, originally supplied by the United States, would survey the gulf to track U.S. ship movements.

In 1982, Du Pont was assigned to assist Israel, after the confrontation took place between Israeli forces and the Palestine Liberation Organization. The ship remained off the coast of Beirut for nearly 100 days, lending naval gunfire support. The Du Pont was stationed off the coast of Lebanon longer than any other U.S. Navy ship.

Fate[edit | edit source]

Du Pont was decommissioned on 4 March 1983 and sold for scrap on 11 December 1992.

References[edit | edit source]

  1. "1959: Operation Inland Seas". Torsk Volunteer Association, Inc.. http://www.usstorsk.net/photoalbum/59inlandsea01/tpic591.htm. Retrieved 2008-04-27. 

External links[edit | edit source]

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