Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Albuquerque I (PF-7)

(PF-7: dp. 1,430; 1. 303'11"; b. 37'6"; dr. 13'8"; s. 20.3 k. (tl.); cpl. 190; a. 3 3", 4 40mm., 4 20mm., 8 dcp., 1 dcp. (hh.), 2 dct.; cl. Tacoma; T. S2-S2-AQ1)


A city in central New Mexico, located on the Rio Grande about 55 miles southwest of Santa Fe. Albuquerque is the seat of government for Bernalillo County.


The first Albuquerque (PF-7) was laid down under a Maritime Commission contract (MC hull 1425) on 20 July 1943 at Richmond, Calif., by Kaiser Cargo, Inc.; launched on 14 September 1943; sponsored by Mrs. B. L. Livingstone; and commissioned on 20 December 1943, Lt. Comdr. Wayne L. Goff, USCG, in command.

After outfitting and shakedown training, Albuquerque stood out from Treasure Island, Calif., on 24 March 1944 bound for Seattle, Wash. She arrived two days later and remained there until getting underway on 5 April as an escort for an Alaska-bound convoy. She and her convoy arrived in Dutch Harbor, Alaska, on 16 April where the frigate was assigned to Escort Division (CortDiv) 27. For the rest of 1944 and the first half of1945, Albuquerque shepherded convoys between various Alaskan ports and conducted patrols around the Aleutian Islands and in the Bering Sea. Between 5 June and 14 July 1945, the warship made a round-trip voyage from Dutch Harbor to Seattle and back. She then resumed her previous duty for a month before being decommissioned at Cold Bay, Alaska, on 16 August. The following day, she was transferred to the Soviet Union under lend-lease.

After over four years of service with the Soviet Navy, Albuquerque was returned to the United States Navy on 15 November 1949 at Yokosuka, Japan. Following repairs and refurbishment, the frigate was recommissioned at Yokosuka on 3 October 1950, Lt. Comdr. Claude O. Lowe in command. For the next 10 months, she escorted convoys and conducted patrols between Yokosuka, Hong Kong, and Singapore. In August 1951, she operated between Yokosuka and Subic Bay in the Philippine Islands. She departed Yokosuka on 10 September 1951; stopped at Sasebo; and, on the 15th, got underway for patrol and escort duty along the eastern coast of Korea. As a unit of CortDiv 5, Destroyer Flotilla (DesFlot) 3, Pacific Fleet, Albuquerque spent the rest of September and most of October operating along the Korean coast.

She concluded that duty on 26 October 1951 when she departed Sasebo bound for Hong Kong. She arrived in that British colony on 30 September and remained there, presumably in some sort of station ship status, until the following March. On 6 March 1952, Albuquerque stood out of Hong Kong, bound for the Philippines. From Subic Bay, Luzon, she headed back to Japan, returning to Sasebo on 16 May. Based there, the frigate resumed patrol and escort duties along the eastern coast of Korea. That assignment lasted for about six weeks. In July, she again visited Subic Bay and, on the 26th, arrived back in Hong Kong. The warship once more made an extended visit to Hong Kong until finally departing in mid-November. After a visit to Subic Bay, she returned to Sasebo on 3 December and resumed duty along the eastern coast of Korea.

On 28 February 1953, Albuquerque was decommissioned at Yokosuka. On 30 November 1953, she was transferred to Japan on a loan basis. She was commissioned in the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force as Tochi (PF-16). Albuquerque's name was struck from the Navy list on 1 December 1961, but she was returned briefly to United States Navy custody on 28 August 1962. However, almost simultaneously, the frigate was permanently retransferred to Japan. She served in the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force until sometime in 1968 when she was sunk as a target. Albuquerque earned three battle stars during the Korean conflict.

Albuquerque (SSN-706) underway at sea, her hull number prominently displayed on her sail. (NH 96646)

Published: Mon Jun 15 07:14:39 EDT 2015