USS WILLIAM R. RUSH (DD-714)
William R. Rush (DD-714) was laid down on 15 October 1944 at Newark
by the Federal Shipbuilding and Drydock Co.; launched on 8 July 1945; sponsored by Mrs. Dorothy Flagg Biddle
a cousin of Capt. Rush; and commissioned on 21 September 1945
Comdr. Theodore E. Vogeley in command.
After fitting out at the New York Navy Yard and shakedown training out of Guantanamo Bay and Casco Bay
William R. Rush took part in 8th Fleet maneuvers off the eastern seaboard into May of 1946. The destroyer then moved southward
to Pensacola Fla.
where she served as a plane guard for Ranger (CV-4) as the veteran carrier conducted flight training operations. Arriving back at Newport
her home port
on 28 July
William R. Rush spent the rest of the year in local operations.
The destroyer departed Newport on 9 February 1947
bound for Europe and her first overseas deployment. She touched at ports of call in England
and Gibraltar before returning to Newport in June. For the next two years
William R. Rush operated off the eastern seaboard
exercising with submarines and escorting and planeguarding for carriers.
In July 1949
William R. Rush sailed for Europe for an extended European and Mediterranean deployment that lasted into the following year. She touched at ports in France
before she returned to Newport. Subsequently overhauled for three months at Boston the destroyer carried out refresher training in Guantanamo Bay from May into July 1950. Commencing in mid-July
William R. Rush conducted a training cruise that took the warship and her embarked midshipmen from Halifax
to Guantanamo Bay.
Returning to Newport on 1 September 1950
William R. Rush visited Argentia and St. Johns
spent much of the following month engaged in Operation "Convex I" a convoy and striking force exercise
and underwent a period of upkeep back in her homeport
preparing for her next extended deployment.
On 3 January 1951
William R. Rush sailed for the Far East. Steaming via the Panama Canal
the destroyer subsequently joined Task Force (TF) 77 in Korean waters and conducted her first shore bombardment mission on 7 February
shelling North Korean rail lines along the coast. Bombardment and escort missions kept the ship continuously occupied until 13 June
when she began her voyage to the United States
steaming via the Indian Ocean
the Suez Canal
and the North Atlantic.
William R. Rush completed her circumnavigation of the globe when she returned to Newport on 8 August 1951. She spent the rest of 1951 on maneuvers and exercises from her home port before she entered the Boston Naval Shipyard at the end of the year for conversion to a radar picket ship. The ensuing refit during which she was decommissioned on 21 December 1951 entailed replacing the ship's 40 millimeter Bofors batteries with rapid-fire 3-inch mounts; removing her torpedo tubes; and receiving improved electronic and radar equipment to enable the ship to perform her new picket role
itself an outgrowth of World War II experience with kamikazes in the Pacific. Reclassified to DDR-714 on 18 July 1952
William R. Rush was recommissioned on 3 September 1952
Comdr. N. B. MacIntosh in command.
Returning to Newport from her shakedown cruise as a DDR soon thereafter
William R. Rush underwent refresher training in Guantanamo Bay before she called at Mobile Bay
for the 1953 Mardi Gras festivities.
William R. Rush conducted her second 6th Fleet deployment from April to October and then operated locally out of Newport. She performed varying duties into the summer of the following year
in succession: antisubmarine warfare (ASW) exercises plane-guard duties with carriers; and a tour as engineering school ship for the Atlantic Fleet Destroyer Force She next embarked 66 NROTC midshipmen and sailed for the British Isles
touching at Irish and British ports before she returned to Guantanamo Bay for training. Disembarking the midshipmen at Norfolk on 3 September 1954
William R. Rush soon thereafter shifted to Boston for a three month overhaul.
Over the next decade
from 1954 to 1964
William R. Rush was deployed to the Mediterranean
for tours of duty with the 6th Fleet
on eight occasions
touching at ports that ranged from Gibraltar to Beirut
Lebanon and including Pollensa Bay and Palma
Majorca; Naples and Leghorn
Italy; Athens and Salonika
Barcelona and Rota
Spain. During her service with the 6th Fleet
William R. Rush operated as plane guard and radar picket for fast carrier task forces and participated in NATO exercises. There were highlights of the cruises: in 1955
while at Golfe Juan the destroyer hosted Mrs. James J. Cabot
the daughter of Capt. William R. Rush; and
the ship cruised the Mediterranean with Naval Academy midshipmen embarked.
In between the Mediterranean deployments
William R. Rush operated from the Arctic Circle to the Caribbean
homeported first at Newport
from 1954 to 1958
and then from Mayport
from 1958 to 1964. She twice penetrated north of the Arctic Circle
in the autumn of 1957 and late in 1960
both times on NATO exercises.
There were highlights of the ship's closer-to-home deployments as well. In the summer of 1960
the ship embarked 35 Naval Academy midshipmen and took part in operations off the eastern seaboard with the Atlantic Fleet. She visited Quebec
Bermuda; and Poughkeepsie
during the cruise. That autumn
the ship served on "barrier patrol" when Cuban Premier Fidel Castro threatened the Caribbean nations of Nicaragua and Honduras. Two years later in the fall of 1962
after American reconnaissance planes discovered the presence of Soviet offensive missiles in Cuba
William R. Rush returned to the area and operated with TF 135 on the Cuban "quarantine" line from 20 October to 3 December. The ship was at sea continuously during that period
except for an availability alongside the destroyer tender Yosemite (AD-19) from 12 to 17 November.
William R. Rush departed Mayport on 22 June 1964 and arrived at the New York Naval Shipyard on the 26th. Once at the shipyard
the ship commenced a 10 month Fleet Rehabilitation and Modernization (FRAM) overhaul at the completion of which she would resume her old classification
William R. Rush departed New York on 30 April 1965. Homeported back at Newport
the modernized destroyer soon commenced regular operations with the Fleet
following essentially the same sort of schedule that she had pursued since commissioning in 1945.
As a member of Destroyer Squadron (DesRon) 10
she operated off the eastern seaboard between Newport and Key West
assuming a new role as an antisubmarine warfare ship. Returning to Newport on 27 July 1965 from refresher training out of Guantanamo Bay and a week of providing services to the Fleet Sonar School at Key West
William R. Rush embarked 25 NROTC midshipmen for three weeks at sea with Canadian Navy units on exercise "CANUS (Canadian and United States) SILEX 1-65."
The ship then went back to Newport for availability alongside Yosemite and then conducted two weeks of type training before moving south to Key West for a month of Sonar School services. A highlight of that deployment to Florida coastal waters came in September
when she rescued seven Cuban nationals who had originally been bound back to Cuba to bring out relatives. Their two boats had developed engine trouble and were in danger of capsizing in heavy seas.
William R. Rush returned to Newport shortly before Thanksgiving of 1965 and spent the remainder of the year in home waters before getting underway on 14 February 1966 for the Mediterranean. Highlighting the ship's 10th Mediterranean deployment were the usual good will stops at ports in Italy
and Turkey; ASW exercises with American and Spanish Navy units
including Exercise "Spanex I-66"; and 6th Fleet antiaircraft and ASW maneuvers. Relieved on 21 June at Gibraltar
the destroyer returned to the east coast of the United States.
William R. Rush spent the remainder of 1966 on operations off the eastern seaboard
ranging from Newport to the Virginia capes
pursuing a well-rounded slate of exercises including
such areas as gunfire support and ASW. Early in 1967
the ship enhanced her capabilities as an ASW destroyer by receiving two Destroyer Antisubmarine Helicopters (DASH) and becoming fully qualified in DASH operations.
William R. Rush departed Newport on 1 March 1967 and crossed the Atlantic in company with Galveston (CLG-3). The destroyer subsequently called at Gibraltar
and Athens before transiting the Suez Canal on 1 April. She relieved Steinaker (DD-863) the following day at Port Suez. William R. Rush then set course for Bahrain
a small island in the Persian Gulf off the coast of Saudi Arabia. En route
the destroyer was fueled from the French oiler Aritrea at Massawa
on 6 April.
Arriving at Bahrain on 13 April
William R. Rush joined Valcour (AGF-1)
the flagship of Rear Admiral E. R. Eastwold
Middle East Forces (MidEastFor). In the ensuing weeks
the destroyer on her first MidEastFor deployment visited Al Misirah
a small island off the coast of Oman
where the British Royal Air Force maintained a small logistics airfield; Karachi
and Massawa for a fuel stop. William R. Rush returned to Port Suez on 21 May and was relieved there by Fiske (DD-842).
The next day
William R. Rush transited the Suez Canal on her way back to the Mediterranean. At that time
tension was great in the Suez since the President of the United Arab Republic
Gamal Abdel Nasser
had demanded on 17 May that the United Nations Expeditionary Force (UNEF) be withdrawn from Egypt and the Gaza Strip posthaste. On the 20th
Egypt began patrolling Israel's coast.
The growing aura of uneasiness in the Middle East was noticeable. The destroyer's commanding officer subsequently reported: "As (William R.) Rush passed through the Canal we could feel an atmosphere of tension all about us
gun emplacements and troops were obvious on both sides of the Canal."
Over the next few days
the situation worsened. Meanwhile
William R. Rush moored alongside Tidewater (AD-31)
where she spent the first few days of June undergoing a tender availability. However
the outbreak of full-scale war between Israel and her Arab neighbors on 5 June meant a hurried deployment seaward.
The destroyer operated with 6th Fleet units as they conducted emergency contingency force operations until the 17th. She subsequently called at Istanbul from 21 to 26 June before serving as plane guard and picket for America (CVA-66) south of Crete. The destroyer later touched at Kavalla
Greece and Sardinia and Rota
homeward bound. She finally reached Newport on 20 July
ending the eventful deployment.
William R. Rush operated off the coast of Florida
aiding the Fleet Sonar School in training officers and participating in ASW exercises. She then enjoyed a period of leave and upkeep at her home port to round out the year.
Late in January 1968
William R. Rush operated out of Newport as school ship for the Naval Destroyer School. In mid-March
she continued her training oriented activities when she embarked 32 prospective destroyer officers and sailed for the Caribbean in company with Gainard (DD-706) and Glennon (DD-840). During that cruise
she visited St. Croix
Virgin Islands and San Juan
Puerto Rico. Soon after the ship returned to her home port
she shifted to the Boston Naval Shipyard for a four-month overhaul.
Over the next 11 years
William R. Rush conducted two more Mediterranean deployments
in early 1960 and from the autumn of 1970 to the spring of 1971
in between which she operated
off the eastern seaboard and into the Caribbean. Ports visited with the 6th Fleet included Rota and Barcelona
Spain Piraeus Greece
Genoa and San Remo
Tunisia; and Valetta
Malta. A social highlight of the 1969 deployment was when the officers and men of the ship were hosted royally on three separate occasions by Contessa Catherine Rush Visconti-Prasca the daughter of the ship's namesake at her villa.
During that deployment
the ship participated in the usual slate of maneuvers and exercises including stints planeguarding for Forrestal (CVA-59) and John F. Kennedy (CVA-67)
and taking part in NATO Exercise "Dawn Patrol." Returning home
William R. Rush visited Liverpool
and then spent a grueling period in the North Atlantic operating
north of the Arctic Circle again with a hunter-killer group tasked with perfecting ASW tactics. For her part in that significant evolution operating in company with Wasp (CVS-18) William R. Rush received the Meritorious Unit Commendation.
William R. Rush departed Naples and
over the next 26 days
shadowed the Soviet helicopter carrier Leningrad in the Gulf of Sollum
gathering new and noteworthy intelligence data on that ship and her operations. Following that event
the destroyer resumed her other duties
ultimately returning home to Newport on 2 May 1971.
On 5 April 1972
William R. Rush in company with Charles H
Roan (DD-853) departed Newport for her last extended deployment under the Stars and Stripes
bound for the Middle East and Indian Ocean. En route
the ship visited Port-au-Spain
and Lourenco Marques
before arriving at Port Louis
on 11 May. William R. Rush subsequently stopped at Moroni
and Kharg Island
off the coast of Iran. Additionally
the ship spent a two-week upkeep period at the MidEastFor home port Bahrain
where she was visited by the Honorable William P. Rogers
the Secretary of State
on 3 July. She later called at Dammam Saudi Arabia
where she embarked 19 Royal Saudi Naval Force officers for underway training from 15 to 19 July.
A Red Sea excursion took William R. Rush to Massawa and return visits to Mombasa
and Bahrain. In the course of the deployment and during transits between ports
William R. Rush twice conducted surveillance operations at Russian naval anchorages near Socotra Island and Cape Guardafui and once at Coetivy Island.
During the time spent operating under the aegis of Commander
William R. Rush operated primarily as an ambassador of good will
"showing the flag" in an area where the Soviet Union's naval presence was becoming more marked.
after conducting exercises with Charles H. Roan and the British frigate HMS Lowestoft
William R. Rush departed Bahrain. She continued her circumnavigation of the globe with visits to the ports of Karachi
Sri Lanka; Singapore; Hong Kong
Japan; Midway; Pearl Harbor; San Diego
and the Panama Canal before she arrived back at Newport on 31 October 1972.
William R. Rush subsequently operated out Newport on local operations into March of 1973. Then
after an overhaul at the Boston Naval Shipyard
William R. Rush was assigned to DesRon 28 on 2 July 1973 for service as a Naval Reserve training ship.
Homeported at Fort Schuyler
William R. Rush spent the next five years training selected reserve crews and operating between the Virginia capes Operating Area and Halifax
William R. Rush was decommissioned at Fort Schuyler on 1 July 1978 and was simultaneously struck from the Navy list. Transferred that same day to the navy of the Republic of Korea (ROK) under the terms of the Security Assistance Program
the destroyer became ROKS Kang Won (DD-922) and operated with the South Korean Navy into 1979.
[Note: The above USS WILLIAM R. RUSH (DD-714) history may or may not contain text provided by crew members of the USS WILLIAM R. RUSH (DD-714) or by other non-crew members and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]