USS Corporal SS-346 (1945-1973)
The USS Corporal SS-346 was named for the corporal, an alternate name for the fallfish, found in streams of the eastern United States. The Corporal is a Balao- class submarine launched on June 10 1945 by Electric Boat Co., Groton Connecticut and sponsored by Mr.s H.C. Wick. Corporal was commissioned on November 9 1945 with Commander E. E. Shelby in command. Corporal reported to the Atlantic Fleet.
She arrived at her base in Key West, Florida and took part in antisubmarine warfare projects and fleet exercises off Florida and Bermuda and in the Caribbean. After widespread modernization of the ship, she returned to Key West in March of 1948. She left in July of 1952 for her first tour of duty in the Mediterranean with the 6th Fleet from July 15 1952 to October 15. She also participated in large-scale fleet exercises in the Atlantic and Caribbean.
From March 11 to the 16 of May, 1957, she cruised to the British Isles and when she returned to Key West, she continued training and services to the Fleet Sonar School. There she operated in ordinance tests and then in August 1959 Charleston, South Carolina became her home port.
USS Corporal was converted to a Guppy III configuration and continued to operate throughout the 60’s and the early part of the 70s. She assisted in various capacities during the Cold War making regular “Northern” runs across the Arctic Circle, regular “Mediterranean Cruises” and trained submarine sailors in accordance with the Submarine School in New London, Connecticut.
In November of 1973 she was decommissioned and struck from the US Naval Register. She was sold to Turkey under terms of the Security Assistance Program and commissioned as TCG 2. Inonu (s-333). Dropped from the Turkish naval rolls in Spetember of 1996, she was sold for scraps. Today a section of hull containing the stern torpedo tubes can be seen at the Naval Museum at Istanbul.
Asbestos in Navy Ships
Although an essential component of the naval fleet, especially throughout conflicts of the last century, submarines also pose a lasting health risk to soldiers serving on them. However, these risks extend beyond the inherent dangers that existed while operating the vessels during military conflicts. Unfortunately, products containing asbestos were also common aboard submarines 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. Furthermore, the enclosed environment of submarines put servicemen at an even higher risk of exposure. Current and former military personnel who came into contact with or served on submarines should seek immediate medical attention in order to detect possible health consequences associated with asbestos exposure.