The USS Gwin (DD-433), a Gleaves-class destroyer, was launched on 25 May 1940 by the Boston Navy Yard; sponsored by Mrs. Jesse T. Lippincott, second cousin of Lt. Comdr. Gwin. The destroyer was commissioned at Boston on 15 January 1941, Lt. Comdr. J. M. Higgins in command. On 20 April 1941, the destroyer finished shakedown training and received final modifications at the Boston Navy Yard before conducting a neutrality patrol across the Caribbean Sea. It began a similar service in the North Atlantic from its base at Hvalfjörur, Iceland, on September 28, 1941. It returned to the Eastern Seaboard in early February 1942, through the Panama Canal, to San Francisco, California. All US Navy ships constructed before 1980 contained the cancer-causing substance asbestos. Asbestos was most certainly inhaled by every seaman who served on these ships. Asbestos is a dangerous substance that can lead to a number of diseases. If you believe you were exposed to asbestos while serving in the Navy, it is vital you speak with your primary care physician as soon as possible to understand your treatment options and future prognosis better.