USS Stickell DD-888 (1945-1972)
The Stickell was commissioned on October 31, 1945, under Commander Francis E Fleck. The first duty of the Stickell was screening ships en route to the Panama Canal. The ship returned to Norfolk VA on June 13, 1946. The Stickell served with the 7th Fleet for the next four and a half years, making several stops in the Far East.
Action in the Korean War
The Stickell left for the Korean War Zone on November 6, 1950. The ship arrived in Japan on November 27, 1950. She patrolled the southern and eastern coast of Korea with other naval vessels in 1951 and rescued 3 crewmen while on duty. The Stickell returned to San Diego CA on August 4, 1951.
The Stickell patrolled the Korean coast from February 23 until March 19, 1952, shelling the shore 3 times. The ship participated in the blockade of the Hungnam in March 1952 and was involved in operations in Korea until August 6, 1952.
The Stickell was decommissioned in Long Beach CA on December 13, 1952. The ship was converted to a radar picket destroyer and was re-commissioned on September 2, 1953.
After the War
The Stickell began a voyage around the world on June 1, 1953. She stopped at Hong Kong, Singapore, South Africa, Brazil, and other countries. From 1954 until 1958, the Stickell completed 2 training cycles. The ship also performed in NATO and Atlantic Fleet exercises. She received new electronic equipment during a 1958 overhaul.
The Stickell operated as part of the Atlantic Fleet in 1961 and was awarded the Atlantic Fleet Destroyer force Anti-air Warfare Trophy in 1961. She also participated in the Cuban quarantine in 1962. She left to join the 7th Fleet in the Far East on January 19, 1966 and in 1967 the ship qualified as a naval gunfire support ship.
She departed Newport on July 2, 1968 to join the Middle East Force. The ship visited Puerto Rico, Brazil, Angola, Mozambique, India, Pakistan, and other countries during this time. The Stickell joined in the exercise Middlinx XL in the Persian Gulf and returned to homeport on January 10, 1969.
From September 1969 until March 1970, the Stickell operated in the Mediterranean Sea. She left Norfolk, VA on January 7, 1971 to again join the Middle Eastern Force and returned to Norfolk, VA on June 29, 1971.
The Stickell was decommissioned and struck from the Navy list 1 July 1972. She was then transferred to Greece and renamed the Kanaris.
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.