Click to view crew list

The USS SAMUEL GOMPERS (AD-37), a Samuel Gompers-class destroyer tender, was commissioned on 1 JUL 1967. USS SAMUEL GOMPERS served her country for 28 years, 3 months and 26 days, until decommissioned on 27 OCT 1995. After commissioning at the Bremerton, WA Naval Ship Yard, SAMUEL GOMPERS transited to her home port of San Diego, CA. She then began her regular cycle of Western Pacific deployments followed by time in home port. In the 1980s and 1990s SAMUEL GOMPERS deployments extended into the Indian Ocean as the US Naval presence grew in the Persian Gulf. USS SAMUEL GOMPERS was decommissioned in October 1995 and then sunk in a fleet exercise on 22 JUL 2003, off the coast of North Carolina.

The USS SAMUEL GOMPERS (AD-37) deployment history and significant events of her service career follow:

AD-37 Deployments - Major Events

Add a AD-37 Shellback Initiation Add a AD-37 Deployment - Major Event
Month Year to Month Year Deployment / Event
JUL 1941 - SEP 1984 West Pac-Indian Ocean
SEP 1964 - Keel Date: 7 SEP 1964
at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard Bremerton WA
MAY 1966 - Launch Date: 14 MAY 1966
JUL 1967 - Commissioned: 1 JUL 1967
NOV 1967 - MAY 1968 West Pac
NOV 1968 - NOV 1968 USS Duncan DDR 874/first ship to refuel underway from AD37
DEC 1968 - JUN 1969 West Pac
JAN 1970 - JAN 1972 Middle Pacific
MAR 1970 - AUG 1970 West Pac
NOV 1971 - MAY 1972 West Pac-Viet Nam
JAN 1972 - AUG 1972 West Pac-Viet Nam
APR 1972 - MAY 1972 West Pac-Viet Nam
MAY 1972 - JUN 1973 West Pac-Viet Nam
MAY 1973 - MAY 1974 West Pac
JUL 1973 - DEC 1973 Dry Dock
JAN 1974 - AUG 1974 West Pac
OCT 1976 - APR 1977 West Pac
MAY 1978 - NOV 1978 West Pac
SEP 1980 - MAY 1981 West Pac-Indian Ocean
MAR 1981 - SEP 1981 West Pac-Indian Ocean
MAR 1981 - SEP 1981 Mediterranean-Indian Ocean
APR 1981 - Shellback Initiation - 21 APR 1981 - Indian Ocean
APR 1981 - Shellback Initiation - 29 APR 1981 - Indian Ocean
APR 1981 - SEP 1981 Mediterranean
APR 1981 - SEP 1981 West Pac-Indian Ocean
SEP 1981 - Shellback Initiation - 30 SEP 1981 - Pacific Ocean
FEB 1982 - Shellback Initiation - 10 FEB 1982 - Indian Ocean
SEP 1982 - APR 1983 West Pac
SEP 1982 - APR 1983 West Pac-Indian Ocean-Persian Gulf
NOV 1982 - Shellback Initiation - 10 NOV 1982 - Pacific Ocean
AUG 1983 - Shellback Initiation - 10 AUG 1983 - Pacific Ocean
JUL 1984 - AUG 1984 West Pac
AUG 1984 - Shellback Initiation - 21 AUG 1984 - Indian Ocean
JAN 1985 - JAN 1986 Dry Dock
AUG 1985 - Shellback Initiation - 21 AUG 1985 - Indian Ocean
JUL 1986 - FEB 1987 West Pac
JUL 1986 - Shellback Initiation - 8 JUL 1986 - Indian Ocean
OCT 1986 - Shellback Initiation - 3 OCT 1986 - Indian Ocean
JAN 1988 - DEC 1989 Desert Shield
FEB 1988 - AUG 1988 West Pac
FEB 1988 - AUG 1988 West Pac-Indian Ocean-Persian Gulf
FEB 1988 - AUG 1988 West Pac-Indian Ocean
JUL 1988 - Shellback Initiation - 4 JUL 1988 - Pacific Ocean
FEB 1990 - OCT 1990 West Pac-Indian Ocean
APR 1991 - OCT 1991 West Pac-Indian Ocean-Persian Gulf
MAY 1991 - Shellback Initiation - 10 MAY 1991 - Pacific Ocean
MAR 1993 - SEP 1993 West Pac
NOV 1994 - JUN 1995 West Pac
APR 1995 - Shellback Initiation - 26 APR 1995 - Pacific Ocean
OCT 1995 - Decommissioned: 27 OCT 1995

AD-37 General Specifications

Class: Samuel Gompers-class destroyer tender

Complement: 1056 Officers and Enlisted

Displacement: 13458 tons

Length: 645 feet

Beam: 85 feet

Draft: 22 feet 6 in

Final Disposition: Sunk as target 22 July 2003


Samuel Gompers (AD-37) was laid down on 9 July 1964 by the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, Wash.; launched on 14 May 1966; sponsored by Mrs. Joseph Holmes; and commissioned on 1 July 1967, Capt. Harry Risch, Jr., in command.

After her commissioning, Samuel Gompers spent the next several months in initial outfitting, with acceptance trials taking place from 28 August to 1 September. On 3 October, she got underway for her designated home port, San Diego.

The next month, the destroyer tender underwent various inspections as she was to be deployed to the western Pacific without the benefit of a prior shakedown cruise. This necessitated that a high degree of readiness be attained in a short period of time. All inspections showed that the ship was ready for sea, and she departed San Diego on 10 November for Pearl Harbor.

Following a weapons transfer there, from Prairie (AD-15), Samuel Gompers stood out of Pearl Harbor on 20 November bound for Yokosuka. Upon arriving there on 30 November 1967, she began providing fleet repair support to the operating forces of the Pacific Fleet. In the first month of availability, her repair department accomplished job orders for 54 different ships and other activities.

Samuel Gompers departed Yokosuka for Sasebo on 13 January 1968. Her in port period there was originally scheduled on the 25th. However, the capture of Pueblo (AGER-2) by North Korea brought increased activity by the Pacific Fleet in the Sea of Japan. The destroyer tender's services were required to maintain the destroyer screen for the five aircraft carriers then alternating port visits to Sasebo. Seventy-one ships were serviced there before the AD departed.

On 18 March, Samuel Gompers sailed to Kaohsiung, Taiwan, for three weeks. She anchored in mid-stream and serviced 17 ships before departing for Hong Kong, B.C.C.; Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines; and San Diego. Her first deployment ended on 8 May when she arrived at her home port. One month later, she moved to Bremerton for a period of yard availability. She embarked over 200 dependents to make the voyage up the west coast.

On 27 July, Samuel Gompers stood out of Bremerton, with the dependents aboard, and returned to San Diego. From 30 July to 15 November, she serviced ships there. On the 15th, the tender departed San Diego, with Task Unit (TU) 15.8.2, bound for Subic Bay, via Pearl Harbor, and her second WestPac deployment. From 8 December 1968 to 13 May 1969, she performed fleet repair services in Subic Bay. The period was broken by one five-day visit to Hong Kong. On 13 May, the AD sailed to Yokosuka for a short period of rest and recreation, from whence she sailed to the west coast, arriving on 4 June.

Samuel Gompers operated in the San Diego area until 13 March 1970 when she again deployed to the western Pacific. Subic Bay was her base of operations for servicing fleet units until returning to San Diego on 13 September 1970. She remained there until 2 November 1971 when she steamed west on another deployment. After making port calls at Pearl Harbor and Yokosuka, she moored at Subic Bay on 24 November. The tender operated out of that port until 12 July 1972 when she sailed for Pearl Harbor and San Diego. During the seven-month deployment period, Samuel Gompers made two trips to Danang, South Vietnam, from 9 to 16 April; and from 22 to 30 April. When she reached her home port on 31 July, she remained there to provide repair services to fleet units until mid-July 1973. At this time, she moved up the coast to Portland, Oreg., and operated there until returning to San Diego in early December.

In January 1974, Samuel Gompers departed her home port for another tour in the western Pacific and, into June 1974, still serves with the Pacific Fleet.

[Note: The above USS SAMUEL GOMPERS (AD-37) history may, or may not, contain text provided by crew members of the USS SAMUEL GOMPERS (AD-37), or by other non-crew members, and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]