Medric—a wooden-hulled, single-screw fishing trawler completed in 1920 at South Portland, Maine, by the East Coast Fisheries Co.—was inspected by the Navy on 1 June 1920, in the 1st Naval District, for possible use as a minesweeper, and was assigned the identification number (Id. No.) 3273. However, Medric was not taken over for service in that capacity.
She again came under the Navy's gaze as war clouds gathered in late 1941. Considered for employment as a salvage vessel, Medric was assigned the name Assistance, and the classification ARS-10, on 6 November 1941. Nevertheless, after she had been found "unsuitable for Navy use," her acquisition was cancelled on 11 November 1941. The name Assistance (ARS-10) was accordingly cancelled three days later.
The name Assistance and classification BAR-17 were assigned to the EC2-S-C1 "Liberty" ship laid down under a Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 2649) on 17 May 1944 at Baltimore, Md., by the Bethlehem-Fairfield Shipyard, Inc. Launched on 20 June 1944 and sponsored by Mrs. H. B. C. Gill, Assistance was delivered incomplete to the Navy on 28 June 1944. Fitted out as a repair ship and turned over to the government of the United Kingdom under lend-lease on 20 January 1945, Assistance—given the British pendant number F.173—operated under the White Ensign of the Royal Navy until returned to the United States in 1946. Struck from the Navy list in August 1947, the "Liberty" ship was turned over to the Maritime Commission and remained with that agency until her name disappeared from contemporary merchant ship listings in 1975.