The USS Halligan (DD-584), a Fletcher-class destroyer of the United States Navy, was laid down on 9 November 1942 by Boston Navy Yard, Boston, Massachusetts; launched on 19 March 1943, sponsored by Mrs. John Halligan, widow of Admiral Halligan, and commissioned on 19 August 1943, with Commander C. E. Cortner in command. Assigned to the Pacific, the ship left Charleston on 21 December 1943, landed at San Diego, California on 4 January 1944, and arrived in Pearl Harbor on 11 January. It sailed 22 January as part of Task Force 52 for the invasion of the Marshall Islands. Between 31 January and 25 February, it served as a screen and patrol ship during the Kwajalein operations, and it continued to screen and patrol the forward region until 22 May, when it returned to Pearl Harbor. All branches of the United States military have utilized asbestos in the past, but none as extensively as the United States Navy. The mineral is abundant and inexpensive and it has unique characteristics that make it helpful in a wide range of applications, especially insulation and fireproofing. These characteristics have contributed to asbestos' popularity as a shipbuilding material in both civilian and military sectors.