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USS John R. Craig (DD-885)

Please see below for item level images and donated collections containing photographs of USS John R. Craig (DD-885)

USS John R. Craig (DD-885) was laid down by Consolidated Steel Corp., Orange, Tex., 17 November 1944; launched 14 April 1945; sponsored by Mrs. Lilian Hyde Craig, widow of Lt. Comdr. Craig; and commissioned 20 August 1945, Comdr. L. G. Cornwell in command.

After shakedown in Caribbean USS John R. Craig (DD-885), departed Charleston 19 January 1946 for San Diego arriving 1 February. She departed 7 February to join the 7th Fleet and assist in repatriating Japanese soldiers from North China. The destroyer returned San Diego 31 January 1947. In the years prior to the Korean conflict USS John R. Craig (DD-885) alternated Far Eastern deployments with periods of intensive training off the California coast.

As the conflict in Korea intensified, USS John R. Craig (DD-885) arrived in the combat zone 19 February 1951. She immediately commenced operations with Task Force 77, screening carrier strikes on enemy shore positions. During the Chinese Communist spring offensive the destroyer performed shore bombardment in the Wonsan area, knocking out enemy installations and disrupting transportation. Following the cessation of hostilities, USS John R. Craig (DD-885) continued patrol operations south of the 38th parallel to insure peace in Asia. From 1954 to 1962 the destroyer engaged in exercises off the West Coast with annual deployments to the Far East.

USS John R. Craig (DD-885) operated along the West Coast until heading back to the Far East 6 March 1965. She left Sasebo 8 April to screen USS Midway during strikes against enemy targets in South Vietnam. But for a brief run to Subic Bay, she remained on this duty until 2 July. After a visit to Hong Kong she was designated flagship for a new naval gunfire support group. During the next 20 days he guns were rarely silent as she pounded enemy targets ashore. On 11 August USS John R. Craig (DD-885) headed home and arrived San Diego exactly a month later. Her service during the year won her the Battle Efficiency "E" for DesRon 1.

After operations off Southern California, she entered Hunters Point Naval Shipyard 1 December for overhaul. Ready for action at the end of March 1966, USS John R. Craig (DD-885) trained out of San Diego until sailing for the Far East 28 July. On 13 September she entered the Gulf of Tonkin for plane guard duty. Ten days later she provided naval gunfire support for Operation "Golden Fleece" in Quang Nga; Province. Next came Operations "Sea Dragon" and "Traffic Cop", interdiction of supply from the North to the Demilitarized Zone. During this duty USS John R. Craig (DD-885) engaged enemy shore batteries and shelled North Vietnamese radar sites. The destroyer departed the Gulf of Tonkin 4 December and returned home early in 1967 to prepare for future action.

For a complete history of USS John R. Craig (DD-885) please see its DANFS page.