The USS Heywood L. Edwards (DD-663), a Fletcher-class destroyer of the United States Navy, was launched by the Boston Navy Yard on 6 October 1943, sponsored by Mrs. Louise S. Edwards; and commissioned on 26 January 1944, with Comdr. J. W. Boulware in command. Following the war, the USS Heywood L. Edwards (DD-663) was transferred to Japan and renamed Ariake. The ship served with the Japanese until 1974 and was scrapped in 1976. The destroyer received seven battle stars for her service in World War II and a Navy Unit Commendation for her outstanding part in the great amphibious operations of 1944–45. U.S. Navy veterans have spent countless hours on various types of ships that were constructed with asbestos. Asbestos could be found in gaskets, valves, pumps, forced draft blowers, and other fans, condensers, floor and pipe coverings, clutches, and brakes, among many other products. Because of the extensive use of asbestos-containing products, Navy veterans are one of the most at-risk groups for developing asbestosis, mesothelioma, lung cancer, and other asbestos-related diseases.