USS Toledo CA 133 (1946-1960)

On September 13, 1943, the USS Toledo CA 133 was laid down by New York Shipbuilding in Camden, New Jersey. On May 6, 1945, the Toledo was launched and commissioned on October 27, 1946.

Action in World War II

The Toledo’s first duty was to provide support for the occupation forces. On June 15, 1947, it arrived in Yokosuka, Japan and remained in the Far East until October. On November 5, 1947, it arrived in Long Beach, California and on April 3, 1948, it left Long Beach and headed back towards Yokosuka. The Toledo arrived there on April 24, 1948 to start its second tour of duty which involved looking for contraband smugglers.

During the spring of 1948, the Toledo participated in a goodwill cruise through the Indian Ocean. During the summer of 1948, the Toledo went back to the northwestern Pacific to assist with the evacuation of the Chiang Kai-shek’s Nationalist Chinese forces. On September 16, 1948, it left the Chinese Coast for Bremerton, Washington.

Action in the Korean War

On June 12, 1950, the Toledo went back to Long Beach. Shortly afterwards, it headed towards Korea for combat duty. North Korea had just invaded the Republic of Korea. Between July 27, 1950 and July 30, 1950, it attacked North Korea’s communications. In September, the Toledo headed towards Inchon. Its mission was to make their way through the minefield and distract the enemy so that they would reveal their position for the cruisers. The Toledo returned to Long Beach on November 8, 1950.

On April 26, 1951, the Toledo started its second tour in Korea. It assisted with gunfire for the troops near the Inchon coast. On November 24, 1951, the Toledo’s tour came to an end and it returned to the United States.  It arrived in Long Beach on December 8, 1951 and September 12, 1952, it started its third tour along the Korean coast.

After the War

After the Korean War ended in July 1953, the Toledo was deployed six more times between 1953 and November of 1959.

The Toledo entered the Long Beach Naval Shipyard on January 5, 1960 to be decommissioned. It was decommissioned on May 21, 1960 and transferred to San Diego. For fourteen years, the Toledo was placed on reserve. The cruiser was removed from the Naval Vessel Register on January 1, 1974 and on October 30, 1974, it was sold to the National Metal and Steel Corporation located in Terminal Island, California.

Asbestos in Navy Ships

Although an essential component of the naval fleet, even today, naval cruisers 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.