USS Livermore DD-429 (1940-1947)
The USS Livermore, originally planned under the name of Grayson, was named for Samuel Livermore, a Naval Chaplain. The Livermore was built by the Bath Iron Works of Bath, Maine, and was sponsored by Mrs. Edward M. Upjohn, a descendant of Chaplain Livermore. The Livermore was built by the Bath Iron Works of Bath, Maine, under the command of Lieutenant Commander Vernon Huber.
After training the Livermore was assigned to the neutrality patrol after the fall of France. She then served as an escort vessel with the Wasp and other destroyers for Icelandic vessels headed for England. As a result of growing tensions with the Nazi wolfpacks, on a convoy duty with the Kearney torpedoes were fired. The Kearney was hit and sank. The Livermore was grounded soon after because of storms and friendly battery in Iceland.
Action in World War II
The onset of World War II brought numerous escort missions across the Atlantic. After these duties were successfully completed, the Livermore was moved to patrol and convoy duties in the Caribbean. On November 9, the Livermore was dispatched to French Morocco in preparation for the invasion of North Africa. She was assigned to antisubmarine and antiaircraft duties as well as fire support.
She began 1943 with patrol duty near Recife, Brazil. The Livermore finished the year with five voyages between New York and Casablanca. The next year brought the Livermore to the Mediterranean Sea. On March 5 she joined UN Forces on Anzio, Italy. Her duties were to lay down shore bombardment support and antiaircraft protection. She was also an active participant in the August 15 landing in Southern France.
After the War
When the war ended in Europe she was completing a transatlantic voyage. On June 22 the Livermore was training at Pearl Harbor. V-J Day changed her assignment to escort duty. She was to ensure safe passage of transports that were carrying soldiers for Japanese occupation. Her stay was short, and she returned to Charleston, South Carolina, on January 18, 1946.
Her return found her placed in reserve, decommissioned, and then in service once again. She was assigned to the Naval Reserve Training in the 6th Naval District. An unfortunate run aground off of Cape Cod placed her out of service on May 15, 1950. She was struck from the official Naval register on July 19, 1956. The Livermore was awarded 3 battle stars for her service in World War II.
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.