Action in World War II
The USS Philip was a Fletcher-class destroyer that was constructed in Kearny, New Jersey. She was commissioned in November of 1942. She arrived in the southwest Pacific in time to take part in the Central Solomons Campaign and the invasion of Vella Lavella. Later on in 1943 and for three months in 1944 the USS Philip was on constant duty as an escort in the Bougainville invasion and campaign.
In the middle of 1944, the USS Philip was one of the ships present during the Saipan and Tinian campaigns. In December of 1944, she became part of the force that invaded Mindoro, located in the Philippine Islands chain. The Philip was damaged by friendly fire when the ships joined forces to take out the suicide bombers in the area.
The Philip saved another destroyer and sustained damage by Japanese planes.
After the War
The Philip was sent back to the East Coast and was decommissioned in 1947. In March of 1949, the Philip was reclassified as an escort destroyer and underwent extensive modernization to enhance her ASW capabilities. She was re-commissioned in 1950 and returned to the Pacific. She had two deployments during the Korean War and played a small part in the Vietnam War. The Philip was decommissioned in 1968 and was sold for scrap metal in December of 1971.
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.