USS Parker (DD-604)

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For other ships of the same name, see USS Parker.
P-0882s
Career (United States)
Name: USS Parker (DD-604)
Namesake: Foxhall A. Parker, Jr.
Builder: Bethlehem Shipbuilding Corporation, Staten Island, New York
Laid down: 9 June 1941
Launched: 12 May 1942
Commissioned: 31 August 1942
Decommissioned: 31 January 1947
Struck: 1 July 1971
Fate: sold for scrap, 1973
General characteristics
Class & type: Benson-class destroyer
Displacement: 1,620 tons
Length: 348 ft (106 m)
Beam: 36 ft (11 m)
Draught: 13 ft 4 in (4.06 m)
Speed: 36 kts (66.7 km/h)
Complement: 276
Armament: 4 x 5” (127 mm), 2 x 40mm, 10 x 21” (533 mm) tt., 1 dct., 1 dcp. (hh.)

USS Parker (DD-604) was a Benson-class destroyer in the United States Navy during World War II. She was the second ship named for Foxhall A. Parker, Jr..

Parker was laid down 9 June 1941 by the Bethlehem Steel Corporation, Staten Island, New York; launched 12 May 1942; sponsored by Mrs. Edward Lloyd Winder; and commissioned 31 August 1942, Commander John W. Bays in command.

1942-1943[edit]

After her shakedown cruise along the East Coast and in Cuban waters, Parker served as a convoy escort to North Africa, participating in the attack on Mehedia and Port Lyautey 7 November 1942. Following her return to the Atlantic Coast, Parker escorted convoys to North African ports on five occasions. On the fourth, she supported the Sicilian invasion 5–13 July 1943. Convoy escort duty to the United Kingdom and the Mediterranean Sea followed. On 6 November, when 30 planes attacked her convoy, Parker shot one down.

1944, including Operation Anvil[edit]

From 7 February to 2 April 1944, the ship trained near Casco Bay, Maine, and from 3 to 11 April was on submarine patrol with Task Unit 27.6.1.

On 21 April Parker departed New York for the Mediterranean arriving at Mers-el-Kebir, Algeria 2 May. From 12 to 15 May she steamed to Naples. The ship operated between the Anzio beachhead and Naples from 17 May to 4 June, bombarding the shore in the Ardea sector 31 May–1 June. From 13 June to 9 August, Parker operated from Leghorn to Palermo (Sicily) bombarding positions on the shore and escorting convoys.

From 13 August to 17 August Parker took part in the invasion of southern France delivering shore bombardment and anti-aircraft fire support. She then escorted a convoy from Cap Camarat, France to Naples arriving 21 August. On 31 August, with Destroyer Squadron 16, she departed Naples for home via Mers-el-Kebir, Algeria and arrived New York 14 September.

1945, including transfer to Pacific[edit]

After repairs at Charlestown, Massachusetts, and training at Casco Bay, Parker arrived Norfolk, Virginia 11 November. Two days later she sailed for the Mediterranean. Arriving Naples 26 November, she departed 1 December escorting a convoy back to New York. On 6 January 1945 Parker departed Norfolk with Task Group 62.1 screening a convoy to Oran, Algeria 17 January. In ensuing weeks she operated in the Mediterranean and patrolled off Gibraltar. In March she supported Allied forces on the Franco-Italian and western Italian fronts operating out of Cannes and Toulon, France. Parker bombarded enemy positions ashore on 4, 6, 11, 12, and 20 March. She continued Mediterranean operations until sailing for the United States, arriving New York 23 May.

Following training at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, Parker proceeded to the West Coast and departed San Diego 29 July for Hawaii, arriving Pearl Harbor 4 August.

On 17 August, the ship departed Pearl Harbor for Okinawa, arriving 4 September. She departed Okinawa 8 September as an escort to a convoy proceeding to Korea, arriving Jinsen 15 September and reaching Okinawa 17 September 1945.

Fate[edit]

After returning home, Parker decommissioned 31 January 1947, entered the U.S. Atlantic Reserve Fleet; and was berthed at Charleston, South Carolina. She was struck from the Naval Vessel Register on 1 July 1971 and sold for scrap in 1973.

Awards[edit]

Parker received four battle stars for World War II service.

References[edit]

This article includes information collected from the public domain sources Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships and Naval Vessel Register.

External links[edit]