Sponsored by Miss Suzanne Slingluff, the submarine was built in 1941 and won the Navy Unit Commendation for service in World War II, as well as 6 battle stars. It completed 9 war patrols, out of which only one was declared unsuccessful. As asbestos was a widely used building material for ships at the time, the USS Gurnard contained it in its wall insulation, as well as in other components, such as gaskets, boilers and valves. Thus, the people who were present on the submarine should pay close attention to their health and undergo regular medical examinations in order to make sure the toxic fibers they inhaled have not damaged their lungs. The USS Gurnard was decommissioned in 1945, at the end of the war, and was sold for scrap 16 years later.