The SS Jeremiah O’Brien is a Liberty-class ship that was built in the United States for World War II service. It is one of the only three Liberty Ships that are still operational. The ship was built in June 1943 by the New England Shipbuilding Corporation in South Portland, Maine in 56 days, and sent into the European Theatre of Operations. The SS Jeremiah O’Brien was one of the nearly 7,000 ships that were used during Operation Neptune, often referred to as D-Day that started in June 1944, and also one of the few survivors of that operation. After that, the ship moved to the Pacific Theatre of Operations, where it was in service for 16 months in the South Pacific and the Indian Ocean. After the war, most Liberty Ships were deactivated, some of them ending up into private ownership, while others were placed in the reserve fleet at various locations throughout the country for future potential reactivation. The SS Jeremiah O’Brien was laid up in the reserve fleet at Suisun Bay, California, where it remained until sometime in 1979, when the National Liberty Ship Memorial acquired it for restoration. The ship left the mothball fleet under its own power and became a museum ship at Fort Mason in San Francisco in 1980. Sailed by a volunteer crew of veteran World War II marines and a few cadets, the ship participated in the fifthieth Anniversary of Operation Overlord, the Allied Invasion on the Western Europe’s shores. The ship is still operational to this day and makes several cruises in the San Francisco Bay Area every year, sometimes taking longer trips to other ports on the West Coast.
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