As one of the 16 O-class submarines of the United States Navy, it served in both World War I and World War II. Since it was first decommissioned in 1931 and had such a long fate, being launched in 1918 and used until 1945, it is quite possible that this submarine contained asbestos at a certain point during its existence. The USS O-2 received several awards, including the American Campaign Medal and the World War II Victory Medal. All Navy vessels manufactured during World War II, including submarines, pose the threat of asbestos exposure to those that have built, repaired, maintained, and otherwise worked on them. Asbestos exposure has caused thousands of veterans to develop life-threatening illnesses such as mesothelioma, asbestosis, or lung cancer after retirement.