(ARS - 17: displacement 1,615; length 183’3”; beam 37’0”; draft 14’8”; speed 12 knots; complement 65; armament 1 3”, 2 20mm.; class Diver)
Restorer (ARS-17) was laid down by Snow Shipyards, Inc., Rockland, Maine, 25 March 1942; launched 24 October 1942; sponsored by Mrs. Jessica C. Moore; and commissioned 6 October 1943, Lt. C. M. Boyd, USNR, in command.
Following shakedown off the east coast, Restorer joined a convoy en route to North Africa, mooring at Mers-el-Kebir 22 December. She moved to Algiers on the 31st where, despite several air raids, she assisted in salvage and fire-fighting on USS Thomas Stone (AP-59).
Restorer got underway 21 February 1944 for Naples, whence she escorted an LST convoy to Anzio. Arriving off the assault area 28 February, she relieved Hopi (ATF-71) as senior salvage vessel and through March was engaged in various salvage and fire-fighting operations. Undamaged by occasional shellfire, bombs, and aerial torpedo attacks, she got underway 14 April for Naples; and, after salvage work on SS James Guthrie, she continued on back to North Africa. She remained in various Algerian ports from 18 May to 6 July, then got underway for Naples again. At the end of the month she destroyed the sunken hulk of Portent (AM-106) off Anzio.
Restorer spent most of August in the Gulf of Calvi, Corsica. Then in September she proceeded to southern France, spending the last of the month in harbor clearance work in Marseilles. Most of October and all of November were devoted to work as salvage and fire-fighting ship at Marseille [sic; Marseilles]. Back in Algeria for December, she returned to Marseille [sic; Marseilles] in January 1945 to continue harbor clearance which lasted through February. Returning to Italy, she conducted salvage operations and demolition work on the sunken USS Swerve (AM-121) off Naples during March, then next steamed back to Algeria, whence she got underway for the United States on 7 April. She reached Charleston, S.C., on 19 May.
On 22 July Restorer departed the southeastern coast for Newfoundland and was at Argentia when the war ended. On 1 September she departed Argentia for Bermuda, her base until 10 January 1946. She then got underway for New York with a tow. Arriving on the 14th she moored at Tompkinsville, where she remained until decommissioned 6 March 1946. Struck from the Navy list 19 July 1946, she was transferred to W.S.A., 22 April 1947 and sold to Denmark. She was commissioned as a Royal Danish Naval Vessel 27 February 1948 at New Orleans, La. [and named Vitus Bering.]
Restorer earned two battle stars for World War II service.
25 September 2005