USS Daniel Boone (SSBN-629)
|Namesake:||Daniel Boone (1734–1820), the American explorer and frontiersman.|
|Ordered:||21 July 1961|
|Builder:||Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, California|
|Laid down:||6 February 1962|
|Launched:||22 June 1963|
|Sponsored by:||Mrs. James H. Wakelin, Jr.|
|Commissioned:||23 April 1964|
|Decommissioned:||18 February 1994|
|Struck:||18 February 1994|
|Motto:||New Trails to Blaze|
|Fate:||Scrapping via Ship-Submarine Recycling Program completed 4 November 1994|
|Class and type:||James Madison-class submarine (hull design SCB-216 Mod 3)[clarification needed]|
|Length:||425 feet (130 m)|
|Beam:||33 feet (10 m)|
|Draught:||32 ft (9.8 m)|
|Installed power:||S5W reactor|
|Speed:||Over 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)|
|Test depth:||Over 400 ft (120 m)|
|Complement:||Two crews (Blue and Gold), 13 officers and 130 enlisted each|
Construction and commissioning
The contract to build Daniel Boone was awarded to Mare Island Naval Shipyard at Vallejo, California, on 21 July 1961 and her keel was laid down there on 6 February 1962. She was launched on 22 June 1963 sponsored by Mrs. James H. Wakelin, Jr., wife of Dr. James H. Wakelin, Jr., a physicist who was the Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Research and Development from 1959 until 1964. Daniel Boone was commissioned on 23 April 1964, with Commander George P. Steele, III, in command of the Blue Crew and Lieutenant Commander Alan B. Crabtree in command of the Gold Crew.
During her first major overhaul , like the rest of her class[clarification needed], Daniel Boone was retrofitted with Poseidon C-3 missiles and the associated Mark 88 firecontrol system. Poseidon was replaced by Trident C-4 missiles and on 6 September 1980, Boone became the first James Madison operational with the new missile.
Daniel Boone entered the Tenneco Shipyard at Newport News, Virginia sometime in late 1985 or early 1986 for refit. During post-refit sea trials on 7 April 1987 she ran aground in the James River at Newport News. This grounding occurred primarily because the OOD (Officer of the Deck), in an attempt to counter act tidal currents, lowered the EPM (Emergency Propulsion Motor) which was quickly and violently snapped off on a sandbar. The OOD then ordered the EPM retracted which when retracted opened up an unpluggable 6" diameter hole in the "people tank". This accident significantly delayed her departure from the refit yards. Because they had to obtain another EPM and repair the hull penetration in Tenneco's dry dock. No ballistic missiles (and their corresponding re-entry vehicles and nuclear warheads) were affected as ballistic missile load out had not yet occurred. A Naval Nuclear Reactor incident was also avoided due to the competent quick reaction of Boone's on watch engineering department at the time of grounding. Thereby preventing the potential radioactive contamination of the James River and ultimately the Chesapeake Bay.
Decommissioning and disposal
Daniel Boone was decommissioned on 18 February 1994 and stricken from the Naval Vessel Register the same day. Her scrapping via the Nuclear-Powered Ship and Submarine Recycling Program in Bremerton, Washington, was completed on 4 November 1994.
- Adcock, Al (1993). U.S. Ballistic Missile Submarines. Carrolltown, Texas: Squadron Signal. pp. 30, (4 also credits mythical interwar Albacore and Trout classes, however).
- Adcock, Al (1993). U.S. Ballistic Missile Submarines. Carrolltown, Texas: Squadron Signal. p. 30.
- This article includes information collected from the Naval Vessel Register, which, as a U.S. government publication, is in the public domain. The entry can be found here.
- Photo gallery of USS Daniel Boone (SSBN-629) at NavSource Naval History – Keel Laying - Launching
- Photo gallery of USS Daniel Boone (SSBN-629) at NavSource Naval History – Sea Trials - Pre Commissioning
- Photo gallery of USS Daniel Boone (SSBN-629) at NavSource Naval History – Pre Commissioning
- Photo gallery of USS Daniel Boone (SSBN-629) at NavSource Naval History – Active Service - Decommissioning
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