Former USS Tripoli arrives in Texas for dismantling

Photo: EMR Group

Former US Navy amphibious assault ship Tripoli (LPH 10) has arrived in Brownsville, Texas, where she will be dismantled and recycled by International Shipbreaking Limited.

The decommissioned Iwo Jima-class ship arrived to Brownsville from Beaumont where the US Navy lays up its mothballed ships.

Recycling work on the 184-meter ship is expected to take approximately twelve months to complete.

Tripoli was the second ship in the US Navy to be named after the famous amphibious operation that inspired the words in the marine hymn “To the shores of Tripoli”.

She served in the US Navy for almost 30 years. During this period the USS Tripoli completed three deployments during the Vietnam War and became the first amphibious warfare ship to carry a full squadron of AV-8’s (VMA-513) Harrier Jets. She also played an integral role in the Persian Gulf where she spearheaded the U.N. mine sweeping operation in Iraq and was deployed as an initial ‘show of force’ when Saddam Hussein deployed forces along the Kuwaiti border.

Her distinguished service earned her 19 awards, including three Combat Action Ribbons and a National Defense Service Medal before she was decommissioned and stricken from Naval service in 1995. The Tripoli spent her following years laid up at Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo CA before she was towed to Pearl Harbour to serve as a launch platform for the ballistic missile defense program.

She will now be dismantled by a company which has a tradition of dismantling warships, including USS Thomas S. Gates (CG-51), USS Forrest Sherman (DD-931), USS George Philip (FFG-12), USS Jarrett (FFG-33), USS Constellation (CV-64) and USS Ranger (CV-61). The company is currently recycling former aircraft carrier USS Independence (CV-62) is currently being recycled.

“The USS Tripoli has significant sentimental meaning to the men and women who served our country and spent a part of their lives with her. She will be recycled in a safe, respectful and environmentally responsible manner,” Chris Green, senior manager of the Brownsville facility said.

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