The USS Rooks (DD-804), a Fletcher-class destroyer of the United States Navy, was laid down on 27 October 1943 by the Todd Pacific Shipyards, Seattle, Washington; launched on 6 June 1944; sponsored by Mrs. Edith R. Rooks, widow of Captain Rooks; and commissioned on 2 September 1944, with Commander Robert F. Martin in command. The ship sailed to the Hawaiian Islands for amphibious landing rehearsals and shore bombardment operations after shakedown off San Diego, California, and availability at the Puget Sound Navy Yard. The USS Rooks (DD-804) was stricken and broken up for scrap in 1983. Asbestos was widely utilized as an insulator in almost all Navy ships throughout the majority of the twentieth century. It was inexpensive, fire-resistant, and chemically inert. A vessel sailing the seas is far from a static environment, continuously moving in response to wind and wave action; thus, asbestos-containing electric equipment, pumps, and engines transmit vibrations throughout her hull, releasing microscopic fibers into the atmosphere. No member of the crew was completely protected from breathing the hazardous material, but those who had to deal with it directly during maintenance duties were most vulnerable.