The O-class submarines were designed for coastal defense, the USS O-6 (SS-67) making no exception. It was launched on 25 November 1917 and went through both World War I and World War II. While this submarine was not initially built with asbestos, as it was laid down in 1916, it was decommissioned for 10 years starting with 1931, so the toxic mineral might have been present on it during World War II. The USS O-6 (SS-67) was decommissioned on 11 September 1945.
Between the 1930s up to mid-1970s, asbestos was highly regarded for its heat resistance and fireproofing capabilities. This made the substance a valuable tool for the US Armed Forces, especially the Navy. U.S. Navy personnel and workers employed in U.S. shipyards during World War II are at risk of developing mesothelioma or other fatal asbestos diseases as a result of asbestos exposure.