The USS Marlin was an experimental submarine that was laid down in 1940 in Portsmouth Navy Yard. She was launched in January of 1941 and would be commissioned shortly before the United States entered World War II, on August 1st of 1941.
Action in World War II
She served in the Atlantic Fleet based out of New London, Connecticut. She departed for Casco Bay, Maine, and arrived for duty with TG27.1. She started training with these forces for anti-submarine warfare. She was then sent back to New London in April of that year and would start operating in Long Island Sound during 1942.
In January of 1943 she arrived again in Casco Bay for further duty with the ships she trained with earlier. The ship then spent the next two and a half years patrolling and training the ships off of New London and Portsmouth, New Hampshire. She made submerged practice approach on Chaffee and ended up colliding with SC-642 during the operation, which would result in damage to both ships. In September she traveled up from Portsmouth with the Chetco until they reached New London.
She departed New London with the Skipjack making way for Bridgeport, Connecticut, and arrived later on the same day, October 25. After five days she left and continued on towards the Boston Navy Yard. She was decommissioned at the Boston Navy Yard on November 9th of 1945, just a few days after she arrived.
After the War
She did suffer a fate that was common for many of the ships that served in World War II, but was sold for scrapping to the Boston Metal Co. on March 29th, 1946. Her final steam to Boston marked the end of a great career of a ship that trained many of the sailors that helped save thousands of lives during the transport of troops across the Atlantic Ocean.
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.