USS SHARK (SSN-591)
The seventh Shark (SSN-591) was laid down on 24 February
1958 by the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Co., Newport News, Va.;
launched on 16 March
1960; sponsored by Mrs. Louis Shane, Jr.; and commissioned
on 9 February 1961, Lt. Comdr. John F. Pagan,
Jr., in command.
After preliminary testing and fitting out, Shark sailed to
the Caribbean in May for her shakedown cruise. The submarine returned
to her building yard for post shakedown repairs and final acceptance by
Shark sailed for the Mediterranean and duty with the 6th
Fleet on 12 August. This was the first such deployment for a nuclear submarine,
and Shark was deployed until 14 November 1961. On 29 January 1962,
the submarine steamed to Bermuda, B.W.I., for 2 weeks of
type training. She was next deployed to the North Atlantic from 15 March to
23 May. During this
period, Shark paid a one-week visit to Portsmouth, England. On 25 August, she departed for another
two months in the North Atlantic. On
her return trip to Norfolk, she
underwent an availability period that lasted until 7 January 1963.
Shark participated in SUBFALLEX in the
North Atlantic from 7 August to 24 October, with a week spent in
Faslane, Scotland. The remainder of 1963 was either spent in port, in
local operations, or conducting antisubmarine warfare exercises in the
On 22 March 1964, Shark departed Norfolk to participate
in SUBSPRINGEX and returned on 21 May. On 25 June 1964, she sailed to
Charleston, S.C., for her first shipyard overhaul which lasted until 7
June 1965. On 7 April 1965, at the shipyard, Shark was presented
the Navy Unit Commendation for meritorious service from 5 April to 9 May
1964, a period in which she achieved results of great value and importance to
the United States Navy in the field of antisubmarine warfare capabilities.
The submarine put to sea for sea trials on 7 June. One month
later, she suffered damage to the forward oxygen system which necessitated
additional repairs at Charleston. On 9 October, she passed her sea
trials and sailed to Key West, Fla., for two weeks of torpedo tube tests and a.
wire-guided torpedo development project.
Shark returned to Norfolk on 25 October 1965 and conducted
type training, individual ship exercises, and antisubmarine warfare
exercises until 8 January 1966. The ship then operated in the
Caribbean until 7 February. She was there again for further trials in July
Shark stood out of Norfolk on 7 January 1967 for the North
Atlantic and conducted special operations until 24 March. Two weeks of this
period were spent at Holy Loch, Scotland. On 12 April, she was presented
her second Navy Unit Commendation for operations in 1966 in which Shark
contributed significantly to the knowledge of the United States Navy in the field of
antisubmarine warfare. Shark departed Norfolk on 16 May for Halifax,
Nova Scotia, which was the first visit of a nuclear ship to a Canadian
port. The submarine operated with Royal Canadian Navy ASW
units before returning to her homeport.
On 11 June 1967, Shark prepared for her first
refueling period at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard and did not put
to sea again until March 1968. The remainder of 1968 and 1969 was
spent performing local or special operations.
Shark was in drydock at Norfolk from 1
January 1970 to 9 August 1971. The remainder of the year and 1972 was
spent in refresher training and undergoing various trials along the east
coast, with the exception of a deployment to the 6th Fleet from 31 May to 19 November
1972. Since January 1973, into August 1974, Shark continues to
operate with the Atlantic Fleet from her homeport of Norfolk.
[Note: The above USS SHARK (SSN-591) history may, or may not, contain text provided by crew members of the USS SHARK (SSN-591), or by other non-crew members, and text from the Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships]