The USS Carpenter was named after Lieutenant Commander Donald Carpenter. The ship was laid down on July 30, 1945 at the Consolidated Shipbuilding Company in Orange, Texas. It was launched on September 28, 1945. Work on its stopped and resumed twice. It was finished as a hunter-killer anti-submarine destroyer at Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company. The Carpenter’s commissioning was on December 15, 1949 at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Virginia.
It had equipment to enable it to counter rapidly moving Soviet submarines. It was given a designation of escort destroyer and went to its home port at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii in 1950. The ship served in the Korean war zone. It then conducted patrols to prevent Soviet submarines from noticing atmospheric thermonuclear tests. It returned home and resumed local operations. The ship returned to Korea in 1953. It patrolled the Taiwan Straits in 1954.
In 1956, the Carpenter visited Hong Kong and the Philippines and worked with the Royal Australian Navy. It visited South Pacific ports in 1957. During the next three years it performed local operations, was deployed, and performed operations with a hunter-killer anti-submarine warfare group near the Sea of Japan. It received new sonar equipment in 1961 to enable it to better detect submarines and in 1962 performed exercises to test the new sonar.
In 1963 the Carpenter performed training exercises off Hawaii. It went to the Far East later that year and had a major overhaul in 1964. It then served in the waters of Vietnam.
Between 1965 and 1972, the Carpenter was in New Zealand, Vietnam, and the South China Sea. It periodically returned to Hawaii for overhauls and training.
In 1972, the Carpenter underwent major repairs. It was transferred to San Francisco where it worked with the Naval Reserve. It performed exercises with destroyers from Japan and Taiwan. In 1974 and 1975, it took part in a public affairs program along the west coast of the United States.
The Carpenter conducted training cruises and local operations between 1977 and 1980. It was decommissioned on February 20, 1981 and leased to Turkey. Turkey purchased its in 1987.
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.