The USS Amsterdam (CL-101) was a Cleveland-class light cruiser laid down on March 3, 1943, and launched on April 25, the following year. It was commissioned on January 8, 1945, under Capt. Andrew P. Lawton’s command with the hull number CL-101 and served in the U.S. Navy for two years until it was decommissioned on June 30, 1947. During its activities, the ship carried a complement of 1,255 people on board and had its main missions in Cuba, Leyte, Norfolk, Culebra, Tokyo, Guantanamo, Cape May, and Portland. After decommissioning, the ship was struck from the Navy List on January 2, 1971, and sold for scrapping in 1972. For the services brought to the country during World War II, the USS Amsterdam received one battle star. Unlike other rocks, asbestos - the group of specific silicate minerals that forms bundles of long, very thin mineral fibers - can easily be spun into thread for cloth, and unlike other types of cloth, it is remarkably fireproof. Although asbestos was once considered a miracle mineral, today we recognize the dangers associated with its use. The long-term exposure that Navy veterans experienced makes them more likely to develop mesothelioma or another asbestos-related cancer.