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The USS MAUNA KEA (AE-22), a Suribachi-class ammunition ship, was commissioned on 30 MAR 1957. After fit out and shake down training MAUNA KEA served with the Pacific Fleet for her entire career. Always true to her motto, "We Sail to Serve", she deployed to the Western Pacific numerous times to keep fully armed. At the end of her service career MAUNA KEA was the oldest ship in commission in the US Navy and flew the "Navy Jack". USS MAUNA KEA served her country for 38 years and 3 months, until decommissioned on 30 JUN 1995. First laid up at the the NISMF at Suisun Bay, CA, the hulk of the MAUNA KEA was disposed of during a Sinkex in July 2006 off of Hawaii.

The USS MAUNA KEA (AE-22) deployment history and significant events of her service career follow:

AE-22 Deployments - Major Events

Add a AE-22 Shellback Initiation Add a AE-22 Deployment - Major Event
Month Year to Month Year Deployment / Event
MAY 1955 - Keel Date: 6 MAY 1955
MAY 1956 - Launch Date: 3 MAY 1956
MAR 1957 - Commissioned: 30 MAR 1957
JUN 1957 - JUL 1957 Guantanamo Bay
NOV 1957 - MAR 1958 West Pac
JUL 1958 - DEC 1958 West Pac
SEP 1958 - SEP 1958 Taiwan Straits (Quemoy Matsu)
JAN 1959 - JAN 1960 West Pac
JUN 1959 - Shellback Initiation - 13 JUN 1959 - Pacific Ocean
JAN 1962 - JUL 1962 West Pac
MAY 1964 - NOV 1964 West Pac
JAN 1965 - SEP 1965 Dry Dock
DEC 1966 - AUG 1967 West Pac-Viet Nam
JAN 1967 - DEC 1973 West Pac-Viet Nam
MAR 1968 - OCT 1968 West Pac-Viet Nam
MAY 1968 - MAY 1968 Entered DaNang Harbour May 15th - 16th
MAY 1968 - MAY 1968 West Pac-Viet Nam
DEC 1968 - APR 1972 Dry Dock
APR 1969 - NOV 1969 West Pac-Viet Nam
JUN 1969 - Shellback Initiation - 21 JUN 1969 - Pacific Ocean
JUN 1969 - Shellback Initiation - 21 JUN 1969 - Pacific Ocean
JUL 1969 - Shellback Initiation - 5 JUL 1969 - Pacific Ocean
FEB 1970 - APR 1970 Dry Dock
MAY 1970 - NOV 1970 West Pac-Viet Nam
JUN 1971 - MAY 1972 West Pac
JUL 1972 - SEP 1973 West Pac-Viet Nam
AUG 1972 - APR 1973 Dry Dock
JAN 1974 - SEP 1974 West Pac
MAY 1975 - NOV 1975 West Pac
APR 1976 - Shellback Initiation - 13 APR 1976 - Pacific Ocean
OCT 1976 - MAY 1977 West Pac
DEC 1976 - MAY 1977 West Pac
MAY 1977 - JAN 1978 Dry Dock
AUG 1978 - MAY 1979 West Pac
FEB 1979 - SEP 1979 West Pac
FEB 1981 - APR 1981 Dry Dock
JAN 1983 - JAN 1986 Mediterranean-Indian Ocean
JAN 1984 - AUG 1984 West Pac
JUL 1984 - JAN 1985 Mediterranean-Indian Ocean
JUL 1984 - DEC 1984 West Pac
SEP 1986 - APR 1987 Dry Dock
NOV 1987 - MAY 1988 West Pac
AUG 1989 - FEB 1990 West Pac
AUG 1989 - Shellback Initiation - 20 AUG 1989 - Pacific Ocean
FEB 1990 - JUL 1990 West Pac
OCT 1991 - DEC 1991 Desert Shield
AUG 1992 - FEB 1993 West Pac
SEP 1992 - DEC 1992 Panama Canal
JUN 1995 - Decommissioned: 30 JUN 1995

AE-22 General Specifications

Class: Suribachi-class ammunition ship

Named for: Mauna Kea

Complement: 23 Officers and 324 Enlisted

Displacement: 9758 tons

Length: 511 feet

Beam: 72 feet

Flank Speed: 20 knots

Final Disposition: Sunk as target during RIMPAC 12 July 2006


Mauna Kea (AE-22) was laid down at the Bethlehem-Sparrows Point Shipyard Inc., Sparrows Point, Md. 6 May 1955; launched 3 May 1956; sponsored by Mrs. Charles R. Brown; and commissioned 30 March 1957, Capt. Kenneth Loveland in command.

Following shakedown, Mauna Kea, designed for rapid replenishment of ammunition at sea, reported for duty with ServRon 1 in the eastern Pacific. Into the fall of 1957 she serviced the 1st Fleet and in November made preparations for her first WestPac deployment. Sailing west, she reported to SevRon 3 at Sasebo, Japan, in December and commenced distributing the bullets of beans, bullets, and black oil to the ships of the 7th Fleet. From that time until 1965, she rotated between duties with the above‑noted service squadrons, participating while with the 7th Fleet, in SEATO exercises and in joint exercises with Koreans, Japanese, and Chinese Nationalist Forces.

On 28 February 1965, the ammunition ship arrived at the Lockheed Shipbuilding & Construction Co. yards, Seattle, Wash. There having reverted to in commission in Reserve status, Mauna Kea commenced FAST (Fast Automatic Shuttle Transfer System) conversion. Completion of this conversion, which would enable her to transfer a bird from her hold to the magazine of a missile‑firing ship in 90 seconds and allow her greater versatility in servicing the fleet with the addition of a heliopad for vertical repenishment capabilities, was delayed for 8 months, because of strikes and lack of necessary parts, until June 1966. Then followed a fitting out period and intensive postconversion shakedown exercises, which continued into the fall. By November she was again an active unit of the Pacific Fleet's Service Force and on 28 December she departed her home port of Concord, Calif., for her ninth WestPac deployment.

Traveling westward, Mauna Kea arrived at Subic Bay, Philippine Islands, 9 January 1967 to join ServRon 7. Four days later she departed Subic Bay for her first trip to the line off Vietnam. For the next six months she rearmed carrier groups on Yankee Station and cruisers and destroyers in the Corps' areas off South Vietnam. At the end of July, she headed north to Japan for a brief visit at Yokosuka before getting underway for California. Arriving at Concord, 22 August, she underwent availability and then commenced participation in fleet and local exercises along the California coast. On 20 February 1968 she departed for her second tour of duty off Vietnam, returning 14 October, for leave and upkeep, after which she will, into 1969, continue servicing the 1st Fleet until setting out for the western Pacific and another tour with the 7th Fleet.

[Note: The above USS MAUNA KEA (AE-22) history may, or may not, contain text provided by crew members of the USS MAUNA KEA (AE-22), or by other non-crew members, and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]