USS Carmick DD-493
The USS Carmick was built in Seattle, Washington. It was constructed by the Seattle-Tacoma Shipbuilding Company. The 1,630 ton Greaves-class destroyer was named after Major Daniel Carmick (1772-1816). Carmick was an officer in the United States Marine Corps. He served during the Quasi-War of 1812. December 28, 1942 was the day it was commissioned. Commander W.S. Whiteside was the first person in command of the vessel.
Action in World War II
The Carmick arrived in Norfolk, Virginia in February, 1943. It served as an escort in the Atlantic. Two months later it helped guard a convoy to NS Argentia, Newfoundland. It then returned to New York City where it joined an escort headed for Casablanca. On May 8, it found itself in the first line of enemy contact. It delivered three depth charge attacks. On June 16, the Carmick struck a submerged object. This caused the vessel to be sent to Boston where it underwent four months of repairs.
Following the repairs the Carmick crossed the Atlantic, escorting a convoy to Derry, Northern Ireland. During the following months it continued this assistance. In April, 1944, it made two depth charge attacks. The same day it was able to dodge a torpedo. It then sailed for Plymouth, England where it arrived on April 28. Its role was to assist the naval force in preparation for the invasion of Europe. In the following months it played various roles from guarding ships to leading them to different locations. On August 18 it successfully destroyed an enemy E-boat. It then returned to New York City for an overhaul and additional training. In June, 1945 it sailed into the Philadelphia Navy Yard. There it was converted to a high speed mine sweeper.
Action in the Korean War
The Carmick then headed out for Okinawa. Its duty was to perform mine sweeping operations until it returned to San Francisco. This was followed by a tour to the western Pacific. It conducted local operations until the Korean War erupted. It was then assigned patrol duty off both coasts of Korea. There it offered mine sweeping operations as well as fire support. Its outstanding assistance earned it the Navy Unit Commendation.
The Carmick returned to San Diego in May, 1952. It then headed out for patrol duty in Yang Do Island. It continued to offer gunfire support as well as mine sweeping to February, 1953. It then returned to Long Beach for overhaul. Following this it had a schedule of exercises and services to the Fleet Sonar School. It was placed out of commission in reserve on February 13, 1954.
Asbestos in Navy Ships
Although an essential component of the naval fleet, especially during World War II, naval destroyers also pose a lasting health risk to soldiers serving on them. Unfortunately, products containing asbestos were common, especially on older ships, because of the material’s high resistance to heat and fire. Despite its value as an insulator, asbestos fiber intake can lead to several serious health consequences, including mesothelioma, a devastating cancer without cure. Current and former military personnel who came into contact with these ships should seek immediate medical attention in order to detect possible health consequences associated with asbestos exposure.