MSO-490 General Specifications
Class: Aggressive class minesweeper
Complement: 74 Officers and Enlisted
Displacement: 775 tons
Length: 172 feet
Beam: 36 feet
Draft: 10 feet
Final Disposition: Scrapped 1994
USS LEADER (MSO-490)
Leader (AM-490) was laid down by J. M. Martinac Shipbuilding Corp.
22 September 1953; launched 15 September 1954; sponsored by Mrs. Norman Wordlund; reclassified MSO-490 7 February 1955
and commissioned 16 November 1955
Lt. Comdr. Harvey Toponce in command.
Leader joined Mine Squadron 9 at Long Beach 21 December. During 1956
she performed mine evaluation exercises and tactical training until 1 October when she departed on her first WestPac cruise. Arriving Yokosuka 30 October
she operated with the 7th Fleet for the next 5 months performing mine warfare exercises in the Far East. Returning home 12 April 1957
the minesweeper resumed mine evaluation tests along the west coast; and she continued these operations for the next 2 years.
From 1959 through 1968 Leader alternated six WestPac cruises with west coast mine warfare and mine countermeasures exercises. During her 1961 cruise
Leader became the first warship ever to visit the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh when she completed the 180-mile transit up the Mekong River 27 August. On this same cruise she directed South Vietnamese units in minesweep training operations. During her tour with the 7th Fleet in 1965
Leader again operated off South Vietnam
this time under more serious circumstances. From June to August she performed special minesweeping operations and played a major role in the expanded American effort to assist the courageous people of Vietnam in their fight against Communist aggressors. Her tour completed
Leader returned to Long Beach 14 December to resume training operations.
1966 saw an extensive overhaul for the minesweeper
from 9 May to 30 September After further training and readying for deployment Leader once again sailed for WestPac 6 January 1967. She participated in Market Time operations for the better part of her tour
returning to Long Beach 18 November. She operated locally through the first half of 1968 Then
on 12 August Leader departed Long Beach for another extensive deployment
and continues operating off Vietnam into 1969.
Decommissioned 12 December 1991 and struck from the Navy Register 18 March 1992,
Leader was sold 15 April 1994 and scrapped.
[Note: The above USS LEADER (MSO-490) history may or may not contain text provided by crew members of the USS LEADER (MSO-490) or by other non-crew members and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]