The USS Electron, for a time known as the USS LST-1070, was constructed by Bethlehem-Hingam Shipyard in Hingham, Massachusetts. This LST-542-class tank landing ship was laid down on February 8, 1945 and launched on April 5. She was put into commission the same day, with Lieutenant R. P. Seem chosen to captain her.
After the War
From her home-base in New York City, the ship was sent to the Philippines on May 19, 1945. She got there on July 14 and served there until October, with the exception of a cargo trip to Tokyo Bay to help with occupation efforts. After October, she was sent to Japan for a short time. On December 6 she was sent to Pearl Harbor. Once there she was converted into an electronics parts issue ship. Before this transformation could be completed, she was sent to the United States West Coast and decommissioned in Astoria, Oregon, on December 3. She was put in reserve. On January 27, 1949, her hull numbers were changed to AG-146, and she was renamed the Electron on February 1.
Service in Korea
After being in reserve for about 8 months, on October 6, 1950, she was put back into commission because the Korean War had started. After getting upgraded at Bremerton, Washington, she took her new electronics to Oakland to get ready for deployment. After moving to San Diego, she was sent to Sasebo, Japan, arriving there on February 5, 1951. For the rest of the Korean War, she was stationed and operated out of this port and the one located at Yokosuka. Her jobs included stocking the Allied forces with supplies and providing support. On August 18, her hull number was changed to AKS-27.
She continued in the same capacity after the war was over, and then she was stationed at Subic Bay from January 18 until April 30, 1955. Sent back to the West Coast April 1956, she was decommissioned and put in reserve on November 16 of that year. She was struck from the navy’s lists on April 1, 1960, and sold for scrap in December. She received one battle star for her services during the war in Korea.
Asbestos in Navy Ships
Although an essential component of the naval fleet, some auxiliary vessels also posed 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.