USS Radford (DD-446)
|Builder:||Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Company|
|Laid down:||2 October 1941|
|Launched:||3 May 1942|
|Commissioned:||22 July 1942|
|Decommissioned:||10 November 1969|
|Struck:||10 November 1969|
|Fate:||sold October 1970 for scrap|
|Class and type:||Fletcher-class destroyer|
|Length:||376 ft 5 in (114.73 m)|
|Beam:||39 ft 7 in (12.07 m)|
|Draft:||17 ft 9 in (5.41 m)|
|Propulsion:||60,000 shp (45 MW);
|Speed:||38 knots (70 km/h)|
|Range:||6,500 nautical miles at 15 kt
(12,000 km at 30 km/h)
|Complement:||329 officers and enlisted|
|Armament:|| 5 × 5 in (127mm)/38 guns,
FRAM II modifications:
2 × 5 in/38 guns,
1 Mark 108 ASW Rocket Launcher,
6 × Mark 44 18 in ASW torpedo tubes,
2 Hedgehog projectors,
2 Mark 14 21 in torpedo tubes,
2 × .50 cal M2 machineguns
Radford was laid down by the Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Company at Kearny, New Jersey on 2 October 1941, launched on 3 May 1942 by Radford's granddaughter Edith (Mrs. François E. Matthes) and commissioned on 22 July 1942.
Radford participated in the Battle of Kolombangara and the Battle of Kula Gulf. She engaged in an offensive sweep against the Tokyo Express, and received Presidential Unit Citation for the rescue of 468 survivors from USS Helena (CL-50). She attacked and sank the Japanese submarine I-19 on 25 November 1943, Received damage from a Japanese mine supporting the liberation of Luzon in December, 1944 and received a Presidential Unit Citation from Philippines Government, was decommissioned on 17 January 1946 and placed in reserve at San Francisco.
Radford was recommissioned on 17 October 1949, and operated with the United States Seventh Fleet in support of United Nations Forces during the Korean War. Following the armistice in 1953, she alternated operations along the west coast and in Hawaiian waters with annual deployments to the western Pacific with the Seventh Fleet. In 1960, Radford underwent an extensive Fleet Rehabilitation and Modernization (FRAM II) overhaul at the Pearl Harbor Navy Yard.
On 3 March 1965, Radford, in company with other units of Destroyer Division 252, departed Pearl Harbor on short notice to augment destroyer forces for the rapidly expanding naval commitments in the South China Sea. In October and December Renshaw served as an alternate recovery ship in Project Gemini and participated in Sea Dragon and Market Time operations, patrolled on search and rescue duties and carried out Naval Gunfire Support missions during the Vietnam War from 1965 through 1969.
Her 11th WestPac tour began 5 July 1966. During this period, she participated in anti-submarine operations, escorted attack carriers in the Gulf of Tonkin, had 2 tours of duty on NGFS, a turn on Taiwan patrol, served as forward picket for the Seventh Fleet units operating in the South China Sea and escorted President Johnson's support units to Malaysia during his tour of southeast Asia. DesDiv 252 returned to Pearl Harbor on 16 December 1966.
Radford was decommissioned at San Francisco just months after returning from her 1969 WestPac tour. She was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register on 10 November 1969, and sold for scrap in October 1970, but not before she fought one last battle on her own. She broke away from the tug that was towing her from Valejo to the Portland scrap yard, and took them on a 34-mile, all day chase toward the Oregon coast.
The USS Radford National Naval Museum is a collection of memorabilia about the ship that is located in Lake Charles, Louisiana aboard the USS Orleck museum. Exhibits include photos, uniforms, and displays about the ship and her service.
- USS Radford website at Destroyer History Foundation
- USS Radford National Naval Museum
- navsource.org: USS Radford
- hazegray.org: USS Radford