USS Spokane (CL-120) Areas With Asbestos Exposure

The USS Spokane (CL-120) was a United States Navy Juneau-class light cruiser laid down on 15 November 1944 at the Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Company in Kearny, New Jersey; launched on 22 September 1945, sponsored by Miss Patrice Munsel; and commissioned on 17 May 1946, with Captain L. E. Crist in command. The cruiser participated in war games with 6th Fleet units, and visited ports in Turkey, Italy, France, Sardinia, Tunisia, Libya, and Algeria before returning to Norfolk on 23 May. The USS Spokane (CL-120) was placed in reserve, out of commission, on 27 February 1950, and berthed at New York. On 1 April 1966, she was redesignated AG-191. It was sold to Luria Brothers & Company, Inc., on 17 May 1973 and scrapped. Asbestos was commonly used by all branches of the military for more than half of the 20th century, especially the Navy. Battleships, submarines, aircraft carriers, all contained asbestos and exposed Navy veterans to high levels of the toxin. When asbestos-containing products are disturbed, tiny fibers are sent into the air. If these fibers are inhaled, they can become lodged in the lungs. The body cannot get rid of these fibers, which can eventually cause inflammation, scarring, breathing difficulties, and health problems.

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Shipmates on USS Spokane (CL-120)

William Marchant Cole

Thomas Weldon Conaway

Alex Joseph Dragg

Walter Eugene Gustafson

Ellis Ray Kerns

Charles Mcgee Robinson

Howard A. Spellman

Eldon Omar Vanbrocklin

John J. Whitaker