Commissioned at San Pedro, California in 1944, the USS Beckham was a Haskell-class attack transport ship whose building was sponsored by Mrs. Frank J. Connolly of Los Angeles, California. It served during World War II with Captain Albin R. Sodergren in command and received two battle stars for the outstanding operations it conducted during the conflict. The USS Beckham was a Haskell-class attack transport ship of the U.S. Navy. It also brought back former prisoners of war during the Korean War.
Because it was laid down during the heyday of asbestos, the ship was laden with the toxic mineral, which inevitably resulted in people who were serving on it being exposed. Asbestos exposure is responsible for terrible, life-threatening diseases such as asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma. The carcinogenic mineral was lurking in large amounts in the damage control room, the pump room, the engine room and the propulsion room. In 1974, the USS Beckham was sold for scrap to Sparreboom Shipbrokers.