USS Oahu (ARG-5) Areas With Asbestos Exposure

The USS Oahu (ARG-5) was a Liberty ship built under a MARCOM contract at the Bethlehem-Fairfield Shipyard in September 1943 and sponsored by Mrs. O.F. Hurt. The ship was named after the third largest island in the Hawaiian Islands and it was the second US Navy ship to carry this name. By the end of the war, the USS Oahu had been repaired over two thousand ships. It then steamed towards the West Coast and it was decommissioned at San Diego and placed in the reserve fleet at Suisun Bay. It was eventually sold to General Metals of Tacoma for scrapping. Because the US Navy, Coast Guard, U.S. Army Transport Service, and Merchant Marine relied heavily on asbestos as an insulator and for fire protection, veterans who served in these military branches make up over a third of all mesothelioma cases diagnosed each year. Mesothelioma is a rare and aggressive form of cancer that is caused by the inhalation or ingestion of microscopic asbestos fibers. These fibers become lodged in the mesothelium, the membrane that surrounds the lungs, abdomen, and heart. Over time, these fibers cause cells to mutate and form tumors. There are three forms of mesothelioma cancer: pleural, peritoneal, and pericardial.

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Shipmates on USS Oahu (ARG-5)

stuart g. abel

carleton fanton bryant

harvey a. downer

steve john gonda

samuel f. hurwitz

edward lynne kibler

roy holt lowmiller

robert l. musto

langdon c. newman

lewis emory rice

henry milton rupprecht

james f. wainwright