Although there is another ship named USS Hornet in the history of the US Navy, this one is the first, being commissioned in 1941. Built in Newport News, Virginia, this Yorktown-class aircraft carrier had the hull number CV-8. It is famous for launching the first attack against Japanese home islands during the World War II. For this brave act, it received a Presidential Unit Citation in the Battle of Midway. The ship carried almost 100 aircraft and over 2,900 officers on board. Unfortunately, the ship was sunk during the war and lost 140 of its crewmen in 1942.
The shipbuilding industry reached its peak in production and in employment during World War II, as the demand for ships, particularly military vessels, was high. Shipyards have been the site of widespread exposure to asbestos for at least 3.5 million workers in various trades, and radiographically detectable asbestos-related pulmonary diseases have been reported in several groups of such workers.