The USS Valley Forge (CV/CVA/CVS-45, LPH-8) was built in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania during World War II. The ship was an Essex-class aircraft carrier with hull number CV-45, commissioned in 1946. With almost 3,500 men aboard, it served in the U.S. Navy’s Atlantic Fleet at the end of the 1950s. The ship was decommissioned in 1970, being in active service for 24 years.
Because the ship was built during World War II, it stands among the ships built between 1930 and 1970, which were built with many asbestos-containing materials. Most of the equipment of the vessel was made of mixtures containing large amounts of asbestos, from boilers to gaskets, valves, pipes, and many others. The crew members who served on these ships were more likely to get sick because of the poor ventilation in the engine and boiler rooms. This way, they developed life-threatening diseases such as lung cancer, asbestosis, mesothelioma, or bronchial cancer.