USS Fiske (DE-143) Areas With Asbestos Exposure

The USS Fiske (DE-143) was an Edsall-class destroyer escort laid down on January 4, 1943, and launched on March 14, the same year. It was commissioned on August 25, 1943, under Lt. Cmdr. R. P. Walker’s command as DE-143 and served in the U.S. Navy for one year until it was sunk on August 18, 1944. During its activities, the ship carried a complement of 209 people on board and had its main missions in Norfolk, Coco Solo, New York, and Casablanca. For the services brought to the country during World War II, the USS Fiske received one battle star. Used as a material for heating insulation since the 1920s, the most widespread use of asbestos was aboard Navy ships. Construction, repairs, and routine maintenance tasks could have caused asbestos particles to be released into the air. Anyone who served aboard the USS Fiske (DE-143) or participated in its repair and overhaul was put at risk of developing life-threatening illnesses like lung cancer, bronchial cancer, throat cancer, esophageal cancer stomach cancer, colorectal cancer, or mesothelioma, a deadly form of cancer that attacks the protective lining surrounding the lungs and other organs.

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Shipmates on USS Fiske (DE-143)

Kenneth W. Altuchoff

Ralph Hanson

Charles Vartanian

Robert Randolph White