The USS Hinsdale was built by the California Shipbuilding Company in 1944 as a Victory ship. It was named after the county of Hinsdale in Colorado. The ship served during World War II and earned two battle stars for the extraordinary operations it conducted under the command of Edward Flood Beyer. It belonged to the Haskell-class attack transport. In 1974, the USS Hinsdale was sold for scrap.
Since it was laid down in the middle of the last century, the ship was laden with asbestos, with over 300 different hazardous products aboard it, which made exposure inevitable for the military personnel serving on it. The heaviest asbestos exposure took place in the engine room and the damage control room. Following the inhalation or ingestion of asbestos fibers, they attach themselves to various organs, slowly causing inflammation and tissue scarring which may, in turn, lead to the development of serious respiratory diseases such as lung cancer, mesothelioma and asbestosis. Former service members who worked on Navy ships and have now been diagnosed with any of these diseases may be able eligible for free health care, financial compensation and VA benefits.