USS SEATTLE (AOE-3)
The second Seattle, a fast combat support ship,
was laid down on 1 October 1965 at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard,
Bremerton, Wash.; launched on 2 March 1968; sponsored by Mrs. William
M. Allen, Chairman of the Board of the Children's Orthopedic Hospital Association, Seattle; and
commissioned on 5 April 1969, Capt. Bruce
Keener III in command.
After fitting out, Seattle departed Puget Sound
Naval Shipyard on 24 September 1969 en route to Norfolk. Seattle visited
Long Beach, San Diego, Acapulco, the Panama Canal, and New Orleans,
arriving at Norfolk, her designated home port, on 22 November.
Seattle left home port on 2 January 1970
for Guantanamo Bay and shakedown training. On 13 January, Seattle
took attack carrier, America (CVA-66), alongside for
refueling. She departed again on the 19th for more exercises and a
visit to Port-au-Prince, Haiti, before returning to Guantanamo on
Following additional exercises and battle problems, Seattle
steamed for Mayport, Fla., and thence proceeded to Norfolk,
arriving on 12 February.
On 26 February, Seattle was struck by a yard tug, puncturing
a tank, and spilling black oil for almost two hours. The oil was quickly
skimmed off the water, and no adverse reaction resulted from the mishap.
Seattle departed Norfolk on 27 August
for her first overseas deployment. She entered her first European port,
Lisbon, Portugal, on 6 September. On 8 September, she anchored off Rota,
Spain. Passing through the Straits of Gibraltar the next day, Seattle loaded
cargo onto Concord (AFS-5) and then proceeded to the eastern
Mediterranean via Augusta, Sicily. The Jordanian Crisis had brought matters
close to a boil, and Seattle served as the primary logistic support ship
for Saratoga (CVA-60) and her escorts. Toward
the end of the month, Seattle was one of 12 ships reviewed
by President Nixon.
Seattle continued her support of Saratoga
in the eastern Mediterranean until 20 October, when she arrived
in Athens, Greece.
Leaving Athens on 29 October, Seattle replenished ships
until 9 November, when she pulled into Augusta, Sicily, for another
one-day fuel lift. She then proceeded to Taranto, the Italian Navy's largest base, arriving
on the 12th.
Seattle departed Taranto on 16 November
and continued replenishment of 6th Fleet ships. She spent from 25
November to 1 December in Naples. From 8 to 14 December, the replenisher
was anchored in Barcelona, Spain; and ended the year at Villefranche, France.
Seattle got underway on 6 January 1971
for operations in the vicinity of southeast Sicily. On 17 January, she
anchored in Naples, remaining there until the 22d. She
operated in the Ionian Sea, the Algiers-Provencal Basin,
and off Barcelona until 20 February, when she got underway for
operations en route to Norfolk, arriving on 1 March.
On 10 August, Seattle departed for Puerto Rico, arriving
at Roosevelt Roads on 13 August. She operated around Puerto Rico, the
Virgin Islands, Guantanamo, and Haiti before returning to Norfolk on 11
On 1 December, Seattle steamed out of Craney
Island, Virginia, for a six-month deployment to the
Mediterranean. The fast combat support ship arrived at Rota, Spain,
on the 9th, and got underway on the following day for Augusta, Sicily,
arriving on the 16th. On the 19th, she was en route to Naples, where she spent Christmas
in port. On 28 December, Seattle ended her stay in
Naples and was underway to Barcelona, arriving on New Year's Eve. At the completion of a seven-month Mediterranean cruise, Seattle returned
to Norfolk on 29 June 1972. She
operated out of Norfolk for four
months, then departed, on 24 October, for an unscheduled deployment to the 6th Fleet. She participated in "Bystander" operations in the
western Mediterranean and in exercise "National Week XIV"
before returning to Norfolk on 19 December.
Seattle spent the remainder of 1972 at
Norfolk and the first six months of 1973 in operations from that port.
[Note: The above USS SEATTLE (AOE-3) history may, or may not, contain text provided by crew members of the USS SEATTLE (AOE-3), or by other non-crew members, and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]