Nicknamed “Lady Lex”, the ship was laid down by the Fore River Ship and Engine Building Co. in 1921. It was originally built as a battlecruiser but was subsequently converted into one of the first aircraft carriers of the Navy. For its entire career, the USS Lexington served as part of the Pacific Fleet. The ship, along with the USS Saratoga, was used to develop and refine carrier tactics in a series of yearly exercises before World War II. Because the crew of the USS Lexington achieved impressive results, the ship earned multiple awards, including the American Defense Service Medal, the Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal. Nevertheless, the issue of asbestos was very serious aboard the ship, as there were over 300 different products containing this carcinogenic mineral on the USS Lexington. Inevitably, people who were serving on the ship were heavily exposed to asbestos, which now places them at high risk of developing a serious disease such as asbestosis, lung cancer, or mesothelioma. In 1942, the USS Lexington was scuttled following irreparable damage during the Battle of the Coral Sea.