The USS William P. Biddle (APA-8) was a Heywood-class attack transport commissioned for the first time on February 3, 1941, with the hull number APA-8. It served in the US Navy for 5 years until it was decommissioned for the last time on April 9, 1946. During its activity, the ship carried a complement of 560 people on board and had its main missions in Tulagi, Norfolk, New Caledonia, French Morocco, Hampton Roads, Wellington, Tarawa, Eniwetok, and Guadalcanal. After the decommissioning, the ship was struck from the Navy List on June 5, 1946, and scrapped in 1957. For the services brought to the country during World War II, the USS William P. Biddle received 7 battle stars.
Because of its heat resistance property, asbestos was heavily used in naval ships and shipyards being a key component in over 300 different materials used for shipbuilding. For Navy personnel, asbestos exposure was unavoidable and the risks completely unknown. Veterans who served during World War II are most likely to develop asbestos-related conditions.