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U.S.S. SAVANNAH

(AOR-4)

WE SERVE WITH PRIDE

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The USS SAVANNAH (AOR-4), a Wichita-class replenishment oiler, was commissioned on 5 DEC 1970. USS SAVANNAH operated out of Norfolk, VA after commissioning. Deploying to Mediterranean once and then was reassigned to the Pacific due to the need for her services caused by the war in Vietnam. After fueling the "line" for five months, she returned to Norfolk in June 1974. SAVANNAH assumed her regular "watches" in the Atlantic and Mediterranean. For the next twenty years SAVANNAH fueled the Fleet, true to her motto, "WE SERVE WITH PRIDE". USS SAVANNAH served her country for 24 years, 7 months and 23 days, until decommissioned on 28 JUL 1995. SAVANNAH was scrapped in 2009 and her dismantling was detailed in a National Geographic Channel television show titled "Break It Down".

The USS SAVANNAH (AOR-4) deployment history and significant events of her service career follow:

AOR-4 Deployments - Major Events

Add a AOR-4 Shellback Initiation Add a AOR-4 Deployment - Major Event
Month Year to Month Year Deployment / Event
JAN1967-JAN1968Mediterranean
JAN1969-Keel Date: 22 JAN 1969
at General Dynamics Corp. Quincy MA
APR1970-Launch Date: 23 APR 1970
SEP1970-MAR1971Mediterranean
DEC1970-Commissioned: 5 DEC 1970
SEP1971-MAR1972Mediterranean
JAN1972-JAN1972West Pac-Viet Nam
APR1972-SEP1972West Pac-Viet Nam
JAN1973-JAN1974North Atlantic-Med-Indian Ocean
JAN1974-APR1974Caribbean
MAR1975-SEP1975Mediterranean
APR1975-OCT1975Mediterranean
JAN1977-AUG1977Dry Dock
FEB1977-AUG1978Dry Dock
JAN1978-JUL1978Mediterranean
FEB1979-JUN1979Mediterranean
APR1979-JUL1979Collision with the USS Forestall in the Med in 1979 or80 during
JUL1979-JUL1979uss savannah while in carribian collision with uss forestall 65
JUL1979-JUL1979uss savannah while in carribian collision with uss forestall 59
JUL1980-Shellback Initiation - 4 JUL 1980 - Indian Ocean
SEP1980-DEC1980North Atlantic
NOV1980-Shellback Initiation - 29 NOV 1980 - Atlantic Ocean
NOV1980-Shellback Initiation - 29 NOV 1980 - Pacific Ocean
JAN1981-JAN1982Grenada
JAN1982-JUL1982Mediterranean
JAN1982-JAN1983Mediterranean-Indian Ocean
JAN1983-JAN1985Mediterranean-Indian Ocean-Persian Gulf
FEB1983-Shellback Initiation - 26 FEB 1983 - Indian Ocean
FEB1983-FEB1983Mediterranean-Lebanon
OCT1984-APR1985Mediterranean
SEP1986-MAR1987Mediterranean
AUG1988-NOV1988North Atlantic
JAN1989-MAR1989North Atlantic
MAR1990-SEP1990Mediterranean
OCT1991-APR1992Mediterranean
DEC1991-JUN1992Mediterranean-West Africa
AUG1993-JAN1994Mediterranean-Indian Ocean
NOV1993-Shellback Initiation - 16 NOV 1993 - Indian Ocean
JUL1995-Decommissioned: 28 JUL 1995
JUL1995-AUG1995Decommisioning

AOR-4 General Specifications

Class: Wichita-class replenishment oiler

Complement: 22 Officers and 398 Enlisted

Displacement: 40100 tons

Length: 659 feet

Beam: 96 feet

Draft: 35 feet

Final Disposition: Transferred to the Maritime Administration for disposal



USS SAVANNAH (AOR-4)



The fifth Savannah was laid down on 22 January 1969 by the Quincy Shipbuilding Division, General Dynamics Corporation, Quincy, Mass.; launched on 23 April 1970; sponsored by Mrs. Ralph L. Shifley, wife of Vice Admiral R. L. Shifley, Deputy Chief of Naval Operations; and commissioned on 5 December 1970, Capt. Bernard P. Williams, Jr., in command.

Following shakedown out of Guantanamo Bay, Savannah proceeded to her homeport, Norfolk. Arriving on 12 May, she completed post-shakedown availability on 9 August, and prepared for deployment to the Mediterranean.

Savannah departed Norfolk on 20 September. En route to Rota, Spain, she refueled ships participating in a Caribbean exercise. After reporting to the 6h Fleet on 8 October, Savannah operated in Task Group 60.1; and, by the end of the year, she had replenished 178 ships.

Savannah continued to operate with the 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean until early March 1972. On 9 March, she headed west for Norfolk and arrived there eight days later. Her stay in the United States, however, was cut short by the exigencies of the Vietnam War. On 25 April, she exited the Chesapeake Bay and, four days later, transited the Panama Canal. Savannah arrived in Subic Bay, P.I., on 20 May and began a five-month tour replenishing the fleet along the coast of Vietnam. She made six line swings to the Gulf of Tonkin during this time. Each swing was punctuated by a 4-6 day load out period in Subic Bay.

Savannah departed Subic Bay on 5 November, bound for Norfolk. She transited the Panama Canal on 4 December and arrived at Norfolk on the 8th. Savannah operated out of Norfolk, along the Atlantic seaboard and in the Caribbean, for almost all of 1973. On 3 December 1973, she again headed eastward to join the 6th Fleet in the Mediterranean. From 12 December until late May 1974, she supported units of the 6th Fleet on-station in the Mediterranean. On 3 June 1974, she re-entered Norfolk and, as of mid-June, remains in port there.

Savannah earned one battle star and a Meritorious Unit Commendation for service in the Vietnam War.

[Note: The above USS SAVANNAH (AOR-4) history may, or may not, contain text provided by crew members of the USS SAVANNAH (AOR-4), or by other non-crew members, and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]