USS William C. Miller (DE-259) Areas With Asbestos Exposure

The USS William C. Miller (DE-259) was an Evarts-class destroyer escort laid down on January 10, 1943, and launched on February 22, the same year. It was commissioned on July 2, 1943, under Lt. Cmdr. Frederick C. Storey’s command as DE-259 and served in the U.S. Navy for 2 years until it was decommissioned on December 17, 1945. During its activities, the ship carried a complement of 198 people on board and had its main missions in Boston, Pearl Harbor, Tarawa, San Francisco, Saipan, Majuro, the Marshalls, Iwo Jima, Ulithi, and Guam. After the decommissioning, the ship was struck from the Navy List on January 8, 1946, and sold for scrapping to Mr. Fred Perry in New York City the following year. For the services brought to the country during World War II, the USS William C. Miller received 7 battle stars. In the shipyards, asbestos was used in abundance to lag hot water pipes and steam pipes and to insulate boilers on the ships built between World War II and the late-1970s. Because of the very nature of the vessels, often those working as laggers and boiler engineers would be working in confined, poorly ventilated spaces, whilst working with asbestos. When inhaled, these fibers embed themselves into lung tissues. Asbestos fibers can trigger genetic changes in affected tissues over time, eventually leading to different forms of cancer.

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Shipmates on USS William C. Miller (DE-259)