The USS Basilan was a miscellaneous auxiliary ship acquired by the U.S. Navy to be used for World War II operations. It was initially designed to be used as a combined barracks-stores-water distillation ship, but the ship later underwent conversion and it was used as an electronics repair ship. While under the Navy’s command, the ship spent its time in the Pacific theatre of operations. The USS Basilan was laid down at the Delta Shipbuilding Corporation in February 1944 under a MARCOM contract but the urgent need for self-propelled special barracks-stores ships lead to this ship being allocated for conversion and delivered to the Navy in April the same year. Microscopic asbestos fibers, used in various military applications for construction and insulation in the US Navy from the 1930s through the early 1990s, were released into the air when disturbed or worn away with equipment use. Those airborne asbestos fibers were then ingested or breathed deep into the lungs of military service personnel. Once the asbestos fibers become embedded in the lining of the airmen’s lungs, stomach, abdomen, or other parts of the body, scar tissue starts building and inflammation continues for sometimes a few decades.