(DLG 6: displacement 5,368; length 512'; beam 52'; draft 16'7"; speed 30 knots; complement 377; armament one 5-inch, two 3-inch, eight 20 millimeter, two Weapon Alpha, ASROC, four torpedo tubes, one depth charge track; class Coontz)
The fourth Farragut (DLG 6) -- projected as DL 6 but reclassified on 14 November 1956 -- was laid down on 3 June 1957 at Quincy, Mass., by Bethlehem Steel Co.; launched on 19 July 1958; sponsored by Mrs. Harry D. Felt, wife of the Vice Chief of Naval Operations; and commissioned at the Boston (Mass.) Naval Shipyard on 10 December 1960, Cmdr. Roger E. Spreen in command.
|The crest of Farragut (DLG 6) is based on the Farragut family Coat of Arms that dates back to the 13th century. The Coat of Arms is the shield with the golden charger’s shoe and nail emblazoned thereon. The symbolism originates with Don Pedro Farragut, a knight who fought with King James I of Aragon, who drove the Moors from Majorca and Valencia. The eagle carrying the shield is taken from the sternpiece of screw sloop-of-war Hartford, Adm. Farragut’s flagship during the Battle of Mobile Bay, Ala., on 5 August 1864. The four goki stars represent the first four ships named in his honor to date. Adm. Farragut is remembered for the quote at the bottom of the crest, which he spoke during the Civil War battle.|
Farragut completed her shakedown training in the Caribbean, visiting San Juan, P.R.; Port-au-Prince, Haiti; and Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. The ship returned from the Caribbean and put into Pensacola, Fla., in June 1961. Following a short stay at New Orleans, La., she took part in the pageant celebrating the 250th anniversary of the founding of Mobile, Ala. (June). Farragut then accomplished her post-shakedown availability at Boston Naval Shipyard. The ship shifted her home port to Mayport, Fla., on 1 July.
Farragut deployed to northern European waters on 20 November 1961. She reached Portsmouth, England, on 30 November, and through the first week of January 1962, also visited Stockholm and Malmo, Sweden; Copenhagen, Denmark; Hamburg, West Germany; and Lisbon, Portugal. The frigate then served with the Sixth Fleet, and passed through the Strait of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean (January–February). The ship visited Mahon (Port Mahon), Minorca, Balearic Islands, Spain. She returned to Mayport on 3 March. Capt. Arthur F. Johnson, Commander Destroyer Squadron (DesRon) 8, subsequently broke his flag in Farragut.
The frigate participated with nearly 20 other ships and submarines in a sea power demonstration for President John F. Kennedy off the Virginia and North Carolina coasts on 14 April 1962. The President’s entourage, that included members of his cabinet, the Joint Chiefs of Staff, congressmen, Iranian Shah Mohammed R. Pahlavi, and about 30 foreign ambassadors, observed the demonstration from on board attack aircraft carrier Enterprise (CVAN 65). The carrier rendezvoused with an invasion force and the combined force of 84 vessels landed approximately 9,000 marines in an opposed exercise at Onslow Beach, N.C. Capt. Adam A. Herron relieved Cmdr. Spreen as Farragut’s commanding officer on 21 April.
Farragut trained in the Caribbean and visited San Juan and St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, in May 1962. That cruise enabled her to take part in the space program on 24 May. Lt. Cmdr. M. Scott Carpenter manned space capsule Aurora 7 during the launch of Mercury-Atlas-7 on the second U.S. manned orbital flight from Cape Canaveral, Fla. The capsule splashed down in the Atlantic 200 miles beyond the planned impact area northeast of Puerto Rico near 19°27'N, 63°59'W. The long overshot resulted from a 25 degree yaw error during the firing of the retrograde rockets that temporarily passed the capsule beyond radio range and required a nighttime retrieval. Carpenter egressed from Aurora 7 into a calm sea, and a Lockheed P2V Neptune located the capsule. Farragut raced to the scene and claimed to be the first ship to reach the splashdown area. A USAF Douglas R5D-3P Skymaster dropped para-rescue men to assist the astronaut into a life raft. Aircraft No. 57, a Sikorsky HSS-2 Sea King of Helicopter Antisubmarine Squadron (HS) 3, embarked in antisubmarine warfare support aircraft carrier Intrepid (CVS 11), returned the astronaut to the carrier, and destroyer John R. Pierce (DD 753) retrieved the capsule. Additional ships involved included dock landing ships Donner (LSD 20) and Spiegel Grove (LSD 32). On 25 June Carpenter received his astronaut wings.
The frigate deployed to the Mediterranean on 3 August 1962. During that period, Soviet Premier Nikita S. Khrushchëv, having grown concerned over the imbalance in the nuclear arsenals of the rival superpowers, launched Operation Anadyr—the infiltration into Cuba of surface-to-surface missiles capable of being fitted with nuclear warheads—to expand Soviet options, and to demonstrate to the Americans their inability to halt the advance of Soviet power in proximity to the U.S. Cuban leader Fidel R. Castro agreed to the plan. The discovery of the Soviet deception precipitated the Cuban Missile Crisis, because President Kennedy and his advisors considered such a threat to the U.S. unacceptable.
|The ship’s company and guests stand to attention while a sailor raises the Stars and Stripes on board Farragut (DLG 6) during her commissioning ceremonies at Boston Naval Shipyard, 10 December 1960. (U.S. Navy Photograph 191-60, Naval History & Heritage Command)|
|Farragut works-up at sea, 10 May 1961. (U.S. Navy Photograph 1055889, Naval History & Heritage Command)|
Farragut passed through the Turkish Straits into the Black Sea, and visited Ereğli and Trabzon, Turkey (October 1962). She returned into the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas, and visited Athens and Rhodes, Greece; Cannes and Hyeres, France; Gaeta, Genoa, Naples, Palermo, and San Remo, Italy; and Barcelona and Port Mahon, Spain. Homesick crewmen noted that their visit to Naples marked their second successive holiday season away from the U.S. Farragut returned to Mayport on 2 March 1963. She completed an interim shipyard availability at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in May. While there, Cmdr. William B. Althoff relieved Cmdr. Herron as the commanding officer on 9 May.
The ship often made annual Naval Academy midshipman cruises. She embarked 63 midshipmen during the summer of 1963, celebrated Independence Day at New York City, and sailed up the St. Lawrence River to Québec, Canada. She carried out training in the Caribbean and visited San Juan and St. Thomas (16 September–1 October), and additional operations with Task Force (TF) 23 (late October–early November).
She deployed to the Mediterranean on 8 February 1964. The frigate helped develop new tactics for future transits of ships across the Atlantic. Farragut received word the following month that she was to return earlier than scheduled because of a reorganization of the Second Fleet—in May instead of July. The ship took part in NATO antiair and antisubmarine exercises.
Two days after Christmas of 1963, Sixth Fleet Operation Order 53-63 assigned forces to “stand by Cyprus should evacuation of U.S. nationals be directed” in the wake of clashes between Greeks and Turks on that island. International negotiators briefly defused the tensions but they flared again, and the Sixth Fleet’s Operation Order 51-64 re-established the patrols on 27 January 1964. During the following weeks, ships steamed off Cyprus to evacuate Americans from the island and to conduct a show of force. The death of Greece’s King Paul I prompted the State Department to direct Vice Adm. William E. Gentner, Commander Sixth Fleet, to cancel scheduled ship visits to Greek ports.
After a few days, tensions waned, so the Joint Chiefs relaxed reaction time requirements and allowed vessels to make port calls, but renewed conflict between Greeks and Turks on Cyprus prompted a resumption of the Cyprus Patrol. On 14 March 1964, the Joint Chiefs ordered a carrier task group to sail within eight hours of the island, and Sixth Fleet Operation Order 53-64 directed Enterprise to swing around and make for the strife-torn isle. As the Greco-Turkish quarrel receded by 21 March, the Joint Chiefs again relaxed reaction times. After Farragut worked with evacuation destroyers in Cypriot waters during her deployment, she eventually returned home on 23 May.
Cmdr. Richard B. Jacobs relieved Cmdr. Althoff as the commanding officer on 11 July 1964. The ship completed an overhaul at Charleston (S.C.) Naval Shipyard (13 July–18 December). She then carried out refresher training in Caribbean waters and visited Guantánamo Bay; St. Thomas; Roosevelt Roads, P.R.; and Kingston, Jamaica (January–February 1965).
Farragut deployed to the Mediterranean on 24 May 1965. She reached the Sixth Fleet on 2 June, and participated in multiple exercises, including Windmill I with the Dutch. The ship visited Barcelona, Palma, and Port Mahon, Spain; Tunis, Tunisia; Naples and Sestri Levante, Italy; and Beaulieu-sur-Mer, France. Farragut returned to Mayport on 20 September. Farragut fired ASROCs during exercises at Atlantic Fleet Weapons Range (25 October–12 November), followed by PhibASWEx1-65 and MebLex 2-65, a pair of exercises that tested the Navy’s ability to assemble, move, and protect a large amphibious force against aerial and submarine attacks.
The frigate sailed to the Caribbean for the Atlantic Fleet’s annual Springboard readiness exercises (31 January–18 March 1966), punctuating her work with weekend visits to San Juan and St. Thomas. While Farragut returned to Mayport, she briefly put into Miami, Fla. (14–17 March). She thencarried out type training in the Caribbean, including visits to St. Croix and St. Thomas, Virgin Islands, and Roosevelt Roads (12–28 April). Cmdr. William A. Kanakanui, Jr., relieved Cmdr. Jacobs as the commanding officer at Charlotte Amalie, St. Thomas, on 23 April.
Farragut deployed with Destroyer Division (DesDiv) 81 to the Mediterranean on 13 June 1966. The destroyers rendezvoused with attack aircraft carrier Independence (CVA 62), trained in the Caribbean, and reached the Sixth Fleet on 30 June. Farragut relieved guided missile destroyer Tattnall (DDG 19) at Pollensa Bay, Majorca, Spain, on 1 July. She operated at sea for three days and then spent a week at Genoa.
The ship returned to sea with Task Group 60.2 on 11 July 1966, but developed main engine trouble and put into Naples for repairs. Farragut operated as the flagship for Capt. Walter D. Gaddis, Commander DesRon 8, and he shifted his pennant to guided missile frigate Luce (DLG 7). Crewmen and temporally assigned workers from Norfolk Naval Shipyard repaired two high-pressure turbines and one low-pressure turbine while at Naples, through 16 September. The ship took part in MissileEx 3-67 on 20 September. The following day, Capt. Gaddis returned and broke his flag in Farragut. The ship alternated her operations at sea with visits to Barcelona, Palma, and Port Mahon during October. Farragut sailed from Pollensa Bay with attack aircraft carrier Saratoga (CVA 60), guided missile cruiser Albany (CG 10), Luce, and radar picket destroyer Kenneth D. Bailey (DDR 713) on 15 October. Upon Farragut’s return to the U.S. on 26 October, she made engineering repairs during a restricted availability alongside destroyer tenders Everglades (AD 24) and Yellowstone (AD 27) through 6 February 1967. Capt. Paul E. Arbo relieved Capt. Gaddis as Commander DesRon 8 on board Farragut on 29 October 1966.
Farragut took part in springboard antiair and antisubmarine training in the Caribbean (10–26 February 1967), punctuated with visits to St. Thomas (17–20 February) and San Juan (20–23 February). The frigate completed additional training during the subsequent weeks, including a voyage to Newport, R.I. (26–28 May).
The ship deployed to northern European waters in company with a hunter-killer group comprising antisubmarine warfare support aircraft carrier Essex (CVS 9), destroyer Stickell (DD 888), and escort ships Brumby (DE 1044), Courtney (DE 1021), Hartley (DE 1029), and Lester (DE 1022), on 29 May 1967. The group operated with British, Dutch, Norwegian, and West German forces. Farragut visited Stavenger, Norway (8–12 June); Copenhagen (23–29 June); Helsinki, Finland (30 June–5 July); and Portsmouth (13–17 July).
|Farragut steams toward Copenhagen, Denmark, 22 June 1967, in this photo taken by Senior Chief Photographer’s Mate W.A. Jackman) (U.S. Navy Photograph NH 106801, Naval History & Heritage Command)|
The Six Day War erupted between the Arabs and Israelis on 5 June 1967. Farragut consequently made for the Mediterranean, reached the Sixth Fleet on 22 July, and participated in a series of antisubmarine exercises. Port calls included Naples (24 July–3 August); Valletta, Malta (16–21 August); and Palermo, Sicily (31 August–5 September). The tensions lessoned and Farragut visited Rota, Spain, on 11 September, and the following day reached the Second Fleet. She crossed the Atlantic in company with destroyers Basilone (DD 824), Davis (DD 937), Massey (DD 778), and Richard E. Kraus (DD 849), together with oiler Truckee (AO 147). Farragut detached on 19 September, and returned independently to Mayport on 22 September. Cmdr. William R. Martin, Jr., relieved Cmdr. Kanakanui as the commanding officer on 25 November.
Farragut underwent a restricted availability for forced draft blower repairs at Mayport (1 January–early April 1968), followed by an antiair warfare modernization at Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, Pa. (12 April 1968–22 November 1969). Cmdr. Martin decommissioned the ship and turned her over to the Fourth Naval District (and then the shipyard) on 1 May 1968. Farragut completed the major work while drydocked (17 August 1968–15 February 1969). Production lagged at the onset because of shipyard overload. The work included the installation of the Navy Tactical Data System (NTDS), Mk 76 Guided Missile Fire Control System and associated AN/SPG-55B radars, AN/SPS-48 three-dimensional radar, and improved communications, together with extensive repairs to the engineering plant to remedy her propulsion problems. Cmdr. William A. Cockell, Jr., relieved Cmdr. Martin as the commanding officer, and he then recommissioned Farragut on 13 September 1969. The ship completed three sets of sea trials during November and December.
The ship shifted her home port to Newport, R.I., on 10 April 1970. Farragut trained off Narragansett Bay and the Virginia capes, but incurred engineering problems that resulted in a partially collapsed de-aerating feed tank. The ship required a tow from Newport to Boston Naval Shipyard, where she completed repairs (9 June–13 July).
Farragut collided with an unlighted buoy while sailing from Norfolk on 17 July 1970. She continued to Newport and additional exercises at sea, but then replaced her port screw and repaired damage to the sonar dome—both issues resulting from the collision with the buoy—during a restricted availability at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Va. (31 July–3 August). Farragut tested her weapons system alignment, engineering plant, and missiles during a series of exercises extending from Norfolk to Mayport, Roosevelt Roads, and San Juan (10 August–3 September). She accomplished a tender availability at Newport (11 September–2 October), followed by a post-shakedown availability at Boston Naval Shipyard (3 October 1970–13 March 1971). The ship’s original schedule concluded the work before the end of the year, but the scope of the engineering repairs extended the project. Cmdr. Harry W. Bergbauer, Jr., relieved Cmdr. Cockell as the commanding officer on 1 December 1970.
The ship operated in the North Atlantic (September–December 1971), at one point crossing north of the Arctic Circle, enabling her crewmen to attain the appellation of Blue Nose. Farragut took part in multi-threat exercise Royal Knight in the North Atlantic in September. She completed multi-threat exercise LancortEx off Bermuda (7–17 February 1972), and antisubmarine exercise Sharem IX off Florida (late March–early April). Cmdr. James F. McNulty relieved Cmdr. Bergbauer as the commanding officer on 10 May 1972. Further training in late May included a visit to Freeport, Bahamas, and then antisubmarine exercise Squeezeplay XI (5–13 June).
Farragut participated in Unitas XIII into the South Atlantic (21 July–3 December 1972, during which she crossed the equator on 20 July 1972, and again on 10 August. She served as the flagship of TF 86 for Unitas XIV to the Caribbean and South America (July–December 1973). Farragut generally sailed in company with destroyer Forrest Sherman (DD 931), guided missile escort ship Talbot (DEG 4), and submarine Remora (SS 487), and operated with ships drawn from seven South American navies. The ship visited 18 ports including La Guaira, Venezuela; Rio de Janeiro, Salvador, and Recife, Brazil; Buenos Aires and Puerto Belgrano, Argentina; Punta Arenas and Talcahuano, Chile; Callao, Peru; Cartagena, Columbia; and St. Thomas, Virgin Islands.
She carried out amphibious exercise Exotic Dancer VI off the Virginia capes and North Carolina (26 March–11 April 1973). Additional exercises included a mini RemEx in the Caribbean, with port calls at Roosevelt Roads and St. Thomas (4–19 June), and LantReadEx 1-74, with visits at Roosevelt Roads and San Juan (9–27 July).
The frigate completed an overhaul, including a 1,200 pound steam plant improvement program, at Philadelphia Naval Shipyard (13 September 1973–1975). The original schedule called for the work to be performed at Boston Naval Shipyard, but the Department of Defense realignment of shore establishments led to the shift of overhaul locations. In addition, the ship did not complete her overhaul before the end of 1974, as originally ordered, but she reported that “complications and delays” extended the work. Cmdr. John F. Shaw relieved Cmdr. McNulty as the commanding officer on 10 August 1973. Farragut completed her drydocking and moved to Pier No. 6 at Philadelphia on 25 April. Farragut was reclassified as a guided missile destroyer (DDG 37) on 30 June 1975. Cmdr. Jeremy M. Boorda relieved Cmdr. Shaw in August 1975. The ship ran aground while sailing from Den Helder, Netherlands, en route for Brest, France, on 25 November 1975. The grounding damaged the ship’s sonar dome and she required repairs.
|Farragut (DDG 37), newly redesignated as a guided missile destroyer, trains off Hampton Roads, Va., 3 September 1975. (Photographer’s Mate 3d Class John Barber, U.S. Navy Photograph NH 106802, Naval History & Heritage Command)|
Farragut took part in the U.S. Bicentennial Celebration of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence, during the International Naval Review of Operation Sail into New York harbor (July 1976). Aircraft carrier Forrestal (CV 59)sailed from Norfolk with TF 200 to New York as the host ship. The carrier arrived on 3 July and Governor Brendan T. Byrne, N.J., and Mayor Abraham D. Beame of New York City, visited the ship. From the flight deck the following day, President Gerald R. Ford, Jr., rang in the Bicentennial 13 times, symbolizing the original Thirteen Colonies and triggering the simultaneous ringing of bells across America. Beginning at 1406, he delivered an address as the keynote speaker during ceremonies on board Forrestal honoring the birth of the Republic. The President then reviewed 16 ‘tall ships’ (sail-rigged ships) from multiple countries.
Farragut deployed in company with John F. Kennedy to the Mediterranean on 15 January 1977. Storms compelled her to sail farther southward then the usual cross-Atlantic route. She detached from the other ships before they made landfall and relieved guided missile cruiser California (CGN 36) at Tangier, Morocco (29–30 January). The destroyer then passed through the Strait of Gibraltar, rendezvoused with replenishment oiler Kalamazoo (AOR 6) off Gibraltar, and took part in Lockgate, a scenario to test NATO’s ability to force the strait against enemy forces (31 January–10 February). Farragut steamed in company with guided missile destroyer Dewey (DDG 45) to Naples, passing south of Sardinia. Farragut proved unable to complete needed repairs, but her crewmen acquired parts from tank landing ship Graham County (LST 1176), scheduled for decommissioning and moored alongside (12–28 February).
The ship sailed on 28 February 1977, steamed southerly courses, passed through the Strait of Messina and toward eastward. She launched a telemetry configured RIM-67 Standard SM-1ER surface-to-air and antiship missile while at the NATO Missile Firing Installation at Souda Bay, Crete, on 3 March. Farragut then commenced an antisubmarine exercise, but a crisis erupted when Libyan strongman Col. Muammar al-Qadhafi proclaimed the restructuring of the Libyan government (as part of an ongoing program) on 2 March. The destroyer came about and raced at 25 knots overnight to reach a position off the northern coast of Libya (4–5 March). Farragut controlled aircraft that flew reconnaissance missions over the coast from John F. Kennedy. The flights ceased that evening, and Farragut visited Tunis, Tunisia (through 12 March). Security considerations necessitated her dropping anchor four miles from the landing, which led to 20 minute boat rides for liberty parties. She then sailed and discovered two Soviet submarines and their tenders anchored in the Gulf of Hammamet in northeastern Tunisia. The ship and her gig circled and photographed their cold war adversaries.
Farragut battled heavy seas while sailing south of the Strait of Messina, but visited Gaeta, Italy (14–18 March). She passed through the strait and took part in National Week XXII exercises, including an opposed transit and antiair and antisubmarine scenarios. She then rendezvoused with John F. Kennedy and sailed around the heel of Italy into the Adriatic Sea and visited Dubrovnik, Yugoslavia (28 March–2 April). A Yugoslav freighter nearly fouled Farragut while the destroyer entered the channel to Gruz, the deep water port for Dubrovnik, but the guided missile destroyer’s deft maneuvering narrowly avoided a collision. Farragut lay outboard of combat store ship Sylvania (AFS 2) at Gruz, and the berth lay near a lumber mill that showered the ship with sawdust. Gen. Alexander M. Haig, Jr., USA, Supreme Allied Commander Europe, visited the destroyer via a helicopter from John F. Kennedy on 4 April.
The following day, Farragut detached from John F. Kennedy and visited Marmaris, Turkey (7–13 April 1977). She monitored Soviet ships at Kythira, Cyprus, on 15 April, and carried out upkeep at Athens, Greece (16–30 April). Farragut moored near a Greek destroyer undergoing sandblasting in a drydock, which again caused cleanliness problems. Frigate Ainsworth (FF 1090) sustained damage while crossing the Atlantic and she moored alongside Farragut for repairs on 25 April. Farragut sailed and rendezvoused with Dewey, which had visited Piraeus, Greece, and they continued westward. Farragut detached on 2 May and anchored out from the southern Italian port of Gallipoli (2–4 May). She participated in NATO exercise Dawn Patrol, which culminated with an amphibious landing in southern Sardinia (5–16 May). Toward the end of the exercise, Farragut simultaneously controlled aircraft flying from John F. Kennedy and British aircraft carrier Hermes (R.12).
The ship visited Palma de Majorca (18–26 May 1977) and Port Mahon (26 May–2 June), and Menton, France (3–13 June). She passed through the Strait of Bonifacio and fired a Terrier surface-to-air missiles during an exercise at Salto di Quirra missile range, Sardinia, on 16 June. Farragut reported that she continued “the tradition of dusty ports” while moored near a cement factory at Valencia, Spain (23 June–5 July). Cmdr. Sanford N. Mock relieved Cmdr. Boorda as the commanding officer on 30 June. She visited Cartagena (13–18 July) and returned home in company with John F. Kennedy on 1 August.
Farragut moored at Pier 40, New York City (2–6 September 1977), and served as the host ship for the America’s Cup match races at Newport, R.I. (9–20 September). Following her return, Farragut hosted British frigate Penelope (F.127) while the British demonstrated their Sea Wolf point defense weapon system to the Americans (3–17 October). High winds delayed Farragut’s departure by a day, but she completed an overhaul at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard and Norfolk Naval Shipyard (18 October 1977–3 October 1978). The ship hosted Canadian destroyer helicopter escort Skeena (DDH.207) in mid-March 1978. Farragut attempted her sea trials on 18 July, but incurred a problem in the rotor of No. 2 Main Engine, which necessitated her return to Norfolk Naval Shipyard. Cmdr. William L. Wunderly, Jr., relieved Cmdr. Mock in August 1979.
The ship (separately) carried out missile firing, weapons system accuracy, and antisubmarine warfare tests -- against attack submarine Silversides (SSN 679) -- in the Caribbean (3–24 November), with brief stops at Roosevelt Roads, St. Croix, and Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.
She completed a restricted availability at Norfolk Naval Shipyard (30 January–17 March 1980). The ship took part in the 350th anniversary of the founding of Boston (28 May–4 June 1980). Farragut joined in a 70 ship “Parade of Sail” that included frigate Constitution and John F. Kennedy, and hosted an estimated 15,000 visitors. The destroyer then made for the Caribbean for ReadEx 2-80, a multi-threat exercise involving Independence and NATO forces (15 July–15 August). The exercise included Farragut’s attack against a target hulk with an RGM-84 Harpoon surface-to-surface missile. A British Royal Navy Westland Lynx HAS.2 helicopter provided targeting information.
Farragut deployed to the Mediterranean and Persian Gulf on 25 September 1980. She relieved destroyer Stump (DD 978) at Rota on 4 October, and then visited Naples (8–10 October). The ship took part in Display Determination ’80, an annual exercise conducted across the breadth of the Mediterranean. Farragut helped escort a convoy of NATO auxiliary ships through the Ionian and Aegean Seas north to the entrance of the Strait of the Dardanelles. Farragut anchored with destroyer tender Puget Sound (AD 38) and frigate Patterson (FF 1061) at Athens, Greece (15–24 October). Investigators determined that she again required engineering repairs, and the ship accomplished the work at a Greek shipyard at Skaramagas (24 October–3 November).
A mob of Iranian revolutionaries seized 66 Americans including one naval aviator and 14 marines at the U.S. Embassy and the Iranian Foreign Ministry in Tehrān, Iran, on 4 November 1979. The demands of the revolutionaries included the return to Iran of deposed Shah Mohammad R. Pahlavi, who was in the U.S. Farragut trained in the Mediterranean, but the hostage crisis compelled the Navy to order her to make for the Middle East Force in company with Patterson. They reached Port Said, Egypt, on 7 November 1980, and the following day passed through the Suez Canal. Farragut stopped only to refuel at Djibouti, and an Omani patrol boat intercepted and queried the ship as she sailed through the Strait of Hormuz on 15 November. Farragut then relieved guided missile destroyer Lawrence (DDG 4).
The ship operated on the picket patrol line in the central Persian Gulf (16 November–5 December 1979), broken only by weekly refueling at Sitra, Bahrain. She facilitated air operations by maintaining a continuous computer link with guided missile cruiser Fox (CG 33), Patterson, and USAF aircraft. She conducted electronic surveillance, and interrogated passing merchant ships regarding possible difficulties they encountered while sailing across the Persian Gulf. Farragut suffered a main engine casualty and put into Al Manama, Bahrain, on 6 December. Technicians and the ships company failed to repair the engineering plant, but Farragut sailed on a single (starboard) shaft and relieved Fox on Christmas Eve. The ship came about on 28 December, guided missile destroyer Barney (DDG 6) relieved her the next day, and she passed through the Strait of Hormuz.
Farragut refueled at Djibouti on 5 January 1981, passed through the Suez Canal on 11 January, and fueled at Souda Bay on 15 January. A major winter storm slammed into the ship while she made for Naples, shearing off the sonar dome. Farragut completed repairs in Naples, including mending the port shaft sufficiently to enable her to resume her voyage (19 January–9 February). Guided missile cruiser Wainwright (CG 28) relieved Farragut at Rota (13–15 February), and she returned to Norfolk on 24 February. The ship underwent repeated repairs (18 March–14 April, and 14 September 1981–10 February 1982). Cmdr. Stephen A. Jarecki relieved Cmdr. Wunderly as the commanding officer on 29 May 1981.
The ship completed repairs and maintenance alongside Yellowstone (22 February–5 March 1982), and worked up off the Virginia capes during March and early April, followed by refresher training in the Caribbean (22 April–early June). Farragut detached early from an exercise on 2 June, and the following day rendezvoused with Coast Guard high endurance cutters Bibb (WHEC 31) and Ingham (WHEC 35). She shifted tactical control to the Coast Guard, and provided escort and towing services for two vessels seized as drug smugglers, taking one of the vessels under tow and dispatching a boarding party to the other. Farragut ensured the arrival of her charges at San Juan (2–4 June). During this voyage, the ship also stopped at Ft. Lauderdale, Guantánamo Bay, and Roosevelt Roads.
Farragut took part in Navy Week at New York City (17–21 June 1982), and completed a variety of training exercises during the spring and summer that culminated in ReadiEx 3-82 in Caribbean waters (1–16 October).
|A helicopter view of the port side of Farragut, 2 July 1982. (DSNC 82-10442, Defense Visual Information Center)|
She deployed to the Mediterranean on 22 November 1982. Farragut relieved destroyer Thorn (DD 988) at Rota on 2 December, and sailed on 7 December in company with frigates Glover (FF 1098) and Edward McDonnell (FF 1043) for Naples. En route they trained in over-the-horizon targeting and live night-time illumination fire with British frigate Gurkha (F.122). Farragut accomplished work alongside Puget Sound while at Naples (10–28 December). The next day, she rendezvoused with TG 60.2, consisting of aircraft carrier America (CV 66), guided missile cruiser Dale (CG 19), and guided missile destroyer Kidd (DDG 993), near the Strait of Sicily. The battle group set Condition II, steamed toward the eastern Mediterranean, and conducted ‘Freedom of Navigation’ operations off the Libyan coast on 30 December. America recovered her final aircraft and the ships came about and made for Levantine waters to support the Multinational Force in Lebanon. American, French, and Italian soldiers and marines of the force originally landed in Beirut to oversee the withdrawal of the Palestine Liberation Organization from the country, but remained because of the continuing fighting.
Farragut detached from TG 60.2 and assumed duties as the Naval Gunfire Support (NGFS) and Positive Identification Radar Advisory Zone (PIRAZ) ship for TF 61 off Beirut (16–20 January 1983). The destroyer rejoined America and supported the carrier while she steamed in the Ionian Sea and monitored the Libyans (21–23 January). Farragut visited Izmir, Turkey (24–28 January) and then relieved Glover as the NGFS/PIRAZ ship off Beirut (29–31 January). She detached from TF 61 on 16 February to visit Istanbul, Turkey, followed by operations in the Black Sea. The continuing crisis in the Middle East compelled the Sixth Fleet to cancel the visit and Black Sea deployment, however, and she rendezvoused with aircraft carrier Nimitz (CVN 68)—which had relieved America on 20 January—in Egyptian waters. Farragut operated as the PIRAZ ship for Nimitz (17–22 February). She carried out a two-day missile exercise north of Crete, and then visited Naples (28 February–10 March).
The ship escorted Nimitz through the Strait of Messina on 11 March, and they visited Alexandria, Egypt (13–17 March). A storm drove Farragut from her anchorage and out to sea for two days, though the larger carrier endured the foul weather at her berth. Farragut then completed antisubmarine exercise Dogfish with additional NATO ships, including Turkish destroyers Kiliçalipaşa (D.349) and Piyalepasa (D.350), on 18 and 19 March.
Farragut embarked DesRon 20 staff and additional men, crossed the Aegean Sea in company with multiple ships (20–21 March 1983), and then detached with frigate Connole (FF 1056) as TG 68.1 and passed through the Turkish Straits into the Black Sea (22–23 March). A Soviet Grisha class corvette and a trawler almost immediately began to shadow Farragut and Connole. Soviet Beriev Be-12 Mails and Yakovlev Yak-28 Brewer-Cs flew over the group the following day, and Tupolev Tu-16 Badgers and Tu-22 Blinders intermittently investigated the ships during their voyage. Farragut and Connole returned through the Turkish Straits (25–26 March). Farragut stopped briefly at Augusta Bay to disembark DesRon 20 staff and the passengers (28 March), and conducted repairs alongside Puget Sound at Malaga, Spain (31 March–11 April).
Guided missile frigate Clifton Sprague (FFG 16) joined Farragut and they monitored Soviet ships and submarines anchored in the Gulf of Sollum, Egypt (17–19 April 1983). Farragut then resumed her NGFS/PIRAZ role off Beirut. She alternated between anchoring off the port and patrolling one of several fire support areas—with the exception of an antisubmarine and torpedo firing exercise north of Crete on 29 April—until Kidd relieved her on 5 May. Guided missile destroyer Mahan (DDG 42) relieved Farragut from her Sixth Fleet deployment in the western Mediterranean on 9 May. The following day, Farragut rendezvoused with Nimitz and entered the Second Fleet as part of TG 20.5. She returned to Norfolk on 20 May.
Cmdr. Burton W. Renager relieved Cmdr. Jarecki as the commanding officer on 17 June 1983. Farragut escorted Independence while the carrier worked-up for her deployment to the Mediterranean off Jacksonville (5–22 July). Workers from Philadelphia Naval Shipyard removed a number of systems in preparation for the ship’s overhaul, including the AN/SPS-48C (15–31 August). NORSHIPCO, Inc., of Berkley, Va., conducted boiler work on Farragut (1 September–2 November), during which, a welder’s torch touched off a fire on 16 September 1983 that destroyed several main deck spaces, including the post office, career counselor office, supply work space, adjacent forward and aft passageway, and the forward officer stateroom of after officer country. The ship did not report casualties to either crewmen or shipyard workers.
Farragut shifted her home port to Philadelphia on 1 November 1983, and completed an overhaul there (7 November 1983–early 1985), carrying out most of the work in drydock (14 November 1983–3 April 1984). She returned to Norfolk Naval Shipyard (30 November–4 December 1984) to complete the remaining work in the New Year. All told, the upgrades included the installation of a Halon fire-fighting system, the Single Audio System (linking voice radio circuits and cryptologic gear; the RIM-67 Standard SM-2 surface-to-air and antiship missile (replacing the SM-1); the AN/SPS-49 air search radar (replacing the AN/SPS-29); and the AN/SLQ-32 electronic warfare system (replacing the WLR-1). Cmdr. David P. Sargent, Jr., relieved Cmdr. Renager as the commanding officer on 14 October 1985.
Farragut deployed to the Mediterranean on 10 March 1986. Libyan strongman Qadhafi continued to support terrorist attacks against westerners, and announced that a “line of death” stretched across the Gulf of Sidra at 32°30'N. The U.S. reacted resolutely and initiated a series of provocative exercises below the line. Vice Adm. Frank B. Kelso, II, Commander Sixth Fleet, deployed Battle Force Zulu (TF 60), comprising 26 ships and submarines, including aircraft carriers America, Coral Sea (CV 43), and Saratoga, by 24 March 1986. During Operation Attain Document III, several ships crossed the line. That action triggered futile Libyan air and SA-2 Guideline and SA-5 Gammon surface-to-air missile attacks against ships during the mid watch on 24 March. Over the next two days, the Americans defeated the Libyans in a series of engagements. Four Grumman A-6E Intruders of Attack Squadrons (VAs) 34 and 85 sank La Combattante II G class missile boat Waheed with Mk 20 Rockeye cluster bombs and two AGM-84A Harpoon air-to-surface missiles in the first use of those missiles in combat. Farragut faithfully shepherded her charges during the fighting.
Qadhafi sponsored additional terrorist attacks and the U.S. launched Operation El Dorado Canyon—attacks against Libyan military targets (14–15 April 1986). U.S. aircraft struck three target areas near Tripoli: a frogman school at Murat Sidi Bilal; a military zone at Tripoli International Airport; and a command and control building at Bab al-Azziziyyah barracks. Jets also bombed the al-Jamahiriyyah barracks and Benina Airfield, both near Benghazi. Farragut operated with the America Battle Group, comprising America, with CVW-1 embarked, guided missile cruisers Dale and Ticonderoga (CG 47), guided missile destroyer King (DDG 41), destroyer Peterson (DD 969), guided missile frigate Halyburton (FFG 40), frigates Aylwin (FF 1081), Pharris (FF 1094), and Vreeland (FF 1068), and fast combat support ship Detroit (AOE 4). Qadhafi’s forces ineffectually launched two SS-1 Scud-B surface-to-surface missiles at a Coast Guard long-range navigation station on Lampedusa. Farragut returned to Norfolk on 10 September.
The ship took part in Operation Kilo, a special joint service operation between the Navy and the Coast Guard to curtail the influx of drugs into the U.S. via the Gulf of Mexico (27 January–9 March 1987), later receiving the Coast Guard Meritorious Unit Citation for her counter-narcotics operations. Farragut also visited Tampa, Fla. (31 January–2 February) and Mayport, and celebrated Mardi Gras at Galveston, Texas (15–18 February). The destroyer completed a selected restricted availability at North American Shipbuilding and Drydock Co., Norfolk (27 April–6 August)., then carried out refresher training in the Caribbean and at Fleet Training Group, Guantánamo Bay (9 October–early November). The crew buried the remains of Chief Engineman Robert C. Elter at sea on 19 October.
Farragut accomplished an intermediate maintenance availability alongside Yellowstone (1 January–4 March 1988). Following that work, she intermittently trained off the Virginia capes or completed additional maintenance through the spring and summer. Cmdr. David R. Shaw relieved Cmdr. Sargent as the commanding officer on 25 March. The ship sailed for the Caribbean on 14 July, visited Tortola, British Virgin Islands (18–21 July), and certified for deployment at Atlantic Fleet Weapon Training Facilities, Roosevelt Roads, and the Underwater Range at St. Croix, before returning home in early August.
The destroyer participated in Teamwork 88 with elements of the Canadian, British, Dutch, French, Norwegian, and West German navies across the North Atlantic (25 August–11 October 1988). The exercise tested NATO’s ability to defend against East Bloc attacks, emphasizing the U.S. doctrine of Power Projection Ashore and the Forward Defense Strategy. Farragut primarily provided antiaircraft protection for amphibious ships by acting as the amphibious zone defense coordinator. She controlled three other guided missile destroyers, McDonnell Douglas AV-8B Harrier IIs embarked on board amphibious assault ship Nassau (LHA 4), and MIM-23 Homing All the Way Killer (HAWK) surface-to-air missiles deployed ashore. At one point, Farragut sailed north of the Arctic Circle, and she also operated within northern Norwegian fjords. Upon the conclusion of Teamwork 88, the ship spent five days at Amsterdam, Netherlands.
Farragut then deployed with 18 ships and submarines, including aircraft carrier Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71), and guided missile cruisers Leyte Gulf (CG 56) and South Carolina (CGN 37), to the Mediterranean on 30 December 1988. She returned home on 30 June 1989.
Farragut was decommissioned on 31 October 1989, stricken from the Naval Vessel Register on 20 November 1992, and sold for scrap on 16 December 1994. International Shipbreaking, Ltd., of Brownsville, Texas, received a contract to dismantle the ship on 26 September 2006.
Mark L. Evans