DLA to scrap five warships

By Jeff Landenberger DLA Disposition Services

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DLA Disposition Services will recycle five retired U.S. Navy ships as part of a new scrap sales contract to save taxpayer money and protect the environment.


The ex-USS Ticonderoga (CG47) sits in an industrial dock area showing her age.
The ex-USS Ticonderoga (CG47) waits for her sea going escort to take her on her last voyage to Texas where she will be recycled.
The ex-USS Ticonderoga (CG47) sits in an industrial dock area showing her age.
Last voyage
The ex-USS Ticonderoga (CG47) waits for her sea going escort to take her on her last voyage to Texas where she will be recycled.
Photo By: NASSEA
VIRIN: 100202-N-AA098-1111
The five ships are: the ex-USS Charles F. Adams (DDG-2), the ex-USS Barry (DD 933), -the ex-USS Stephen W. Groves (FFG-29), the ex-USS Hawes (FFG 53), and the ex-USS Ticonderoga (CG47).


The winning bid for recycling the ships was $240, according to DLA Disposition Services Public Sales Division Chief Carlos Torres. The important takeaway for taxpayers is that the contract allows the U.S. Navy to avoid per-ship disposal costs that can add up to millions of dollars.


Torres said DLA and the Navy partnered in writing the contract. Navy officials then reviewed technical proposals and ensured that companies bidding could meet the requirements.


The ships’ final destination will be Brownsville, Texas, where full dismantling will commence and 98% of all removed materials are expected to be recycled. 


A young sailor in a working uniform sits on the pier with a ship tied up behind him
Petty Officer Third Class Ron Tucker sits on the pier with the then new USS Ticonderoga (CG47). Tucker was part of the crew that brought the ship to life in 1982.
A young sailor in a working uniform sits on the pier with a ship tied up behind him
Plankowner
Petty Officer Third Class Ron Tucker sits on the pier with the then new USS Ticonderoga (CG47). Tucker was part of the crew that brought the ship to life in 1982.
VIRIN: 090822-N-AA098-1234
Thousands of sailors served on the five ships while they were part of the active fleet. Ron Tucker was new to the Navy in 1982 when he joined USS Ticonderoga’s crew. It was still under construction in the shipyards of Pascagoula, Mississippi, awaiting commissioning, designating him a “plank owner.” 


“Looking back, we were the center of attention with regards to the Navy and DOD,” Tucker said. “The Washington Post carried some articles, they called the ‘Star Wars’ ship.”


Tucker said that, at the time, he did not understand the significance of his new ship being the first to deploy the Aegis weapons system. Today, that system is a standard in the fleet.


A Navy ship moves from right to left in blue water with sand of the desert behind it.
USS Ticonderoga (CG-47) Transiting the Suez Canal enroute to the Mediterranean Sea, following a deployment in support of Operation Desert Shield, 22 August 1990. Photographer: PH3 Frank A. Marquart. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the collections of the Naval History and Heritage Command.
A Navy ship moves from right to left in blue water with sand of the desert behind it.
USS Ticonderoga
USS Ticonderoga (CG-47) Transiting the Suez Canal enroute to the Mediterranean Sea, following a deployment in support of Operation Desert Shield, 22 August 1990. Photographer: PH3 Frank A. Marquart. Official U.S. Navy Photograph, from the collections of the Naval History and Heritage Command.
Photo By: Tom Bateman
VIRIN: 090822-N-AA098-1001
After ships are decommissioned, the Navy places them in reserve, or, what is often referred to as the “Mothball Fleet.” Some are retained in case they are needed in an emergency. But as newer ships are moved into the reserve fleet, the older ones are released to make room and reduce the Navy’s maintenance costs.


“It’s part of the Navy experience to have to say goodbye to a ship, they don’t last forever,” said Tucker.