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DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY -- NAVAL HISTORY AND HERITAGE COMMAND
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Chain

 

A series of links or rings, usually of metal, fitted into each other.

 

(ARS-20: dp. 1,478; l. 213'6"; b. 39'; dr. 14'8"; s. 15 k.; cpl. 120; a. 4 40mm.; cl. Diver)

 

Chain (ARS-20) was launched 3 June 1943 by Basalt Rock Co., Napa, Calif.; sponsored by Mrs. P. F. Roach; and commissioned 31 March 1944, Lieutenant Commander F. J. George, USNR, in command.

 

Chain sailed from San Diego 14 May 1944, bound for the Panama Canal, and Trinidad, which she reached 2 June. She towed barge YF-324 to Recife, Brazil, where on 2 July she joined the 4th Fleet for operations as tug and salvage ship from Recife and Bahia, Brazil, until 18 June 1945, when she cleared Recife for Norfolk. Her essential support played an important, if humble, part in enabling the 4th Fleet to carry out its mission of protecting the South Atlantic.

 

After overhaul and training at Norfolk, Chain cleared for Key West 22 September, where she made rendezvous with three Italian submarines. Sailing east, her little convoy was enlarged by four additional Italian submarines at Bermuda, and she arrived at Taranto, Italy with her charges 3 November. Chain returned by way of Palermo, Sicily, where she took barge YF-445 in tow, to Charleston, S.C., arriving 31 December.

 

Chain operated along the east coast towing barges and decommissioned ships until she grounded in Block Island Sound 29 March 1946. Quickly floated by Coast Guard Cutter Dix, Chain's bottom was heavily damaged, and from 3 April until 25 June, she was repaired at New London, Conn. She left New London astern 25 June, steaming to Orange, Tex., where she was decommissioned and placed in reserve 9 November 1946.