The USS Courtney (DE-1021) was a Dealey-class destroyer escort laid down on September 2, 1954, and launched on November 2, 1955. It was commissioned on September 24, 1956, under Lt. Comdr. C. W. Coe’s command with the hull number DE-1021 and served in the U.S. Navy for 17 years until it was struck from the Navy List on December 14, 1973. During its activity, the ship carried a complement of 170 people on board and had its main missions in Rhode Island, Plymouth, Brest, Wales, Norway, Argentia, Florida, Brazil, and North Carolina.
After the striking, the ship was sold for scrapping on June 17, 1974. Navy veterans remain a high-risk group for exposure to asbestos, despite a dramatic drop in its use that made those in the shipbuilding industry considerably safer. Consequently, veterans of the U.S. Navy, Coast Guard, U.S. Army Transport Service, and Merchant Marine who served between 1940 and the 1990s are at great risk of developing asbestos-related diseases due to a high rate of asbestos exposure.