Naval History and Heritage Command

Naval History and Heritage Command

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Elrod (FFG-55)


Henry Talmage Elrod (27 September 1905-23 December 1941). For additional information see his biography at the USMC History Division.

(FFG-55: displacement 4,100; length 453'; beam 47'; draft 26'; speed 29 (plus) knots; complement 219; armament Mk 13 Guided Missile Launcher with RGM-84 Harpoon surface to surface missiles and RIM-66 Standard surface to air missiles, one 76 millimeter Mk 75 rapid fire gun, six Mk 46 torpedoes, one Mk 15 Phalanx Close-in Weapon System, two Sikorsky SH-60B Light Airborne Multi-Purpose System Mk III Seahawks; class Oliver Hazard Perry)

Elrod (FFG-55) was laid down on 21 November 1983 at Bath, Maine, by Bath Iron Works Corp.; launched on 12 May 1984; sponsored by Mrs. Norma J. McDonald, wife of Adm. Wesley L. McDonald, Commander Atlantic Fleet and Commander Atlantic Command; and commissioned on 18 May 1985, Cmdr. Richard W. Moore in command.

An Iranian speedboat attacked South Korean tanker Hyundai No. 7 with rocket propelled grenades near Abū Mūsá, 20 miles southwest of Sharjar, on 25 December 1987. Elrod, patrolling the Arabian Gulf, launched Magnum 442, an SH-60B manned by pilot Lt. Neil W. T. Hogg, copilot Lt. Gregory P. Curth, and aircrewmen Aviation Antisubmarine Warfare Operator 2nd Class Charles Crissman and Aviation Antisubmarine Warfare Operator Airman Robert Bauch of Helicopter Antisubmarine Squadron (Light) (HSL) 44 Detachment 3. Magnum 442 rescued 11 of the 20 crewmembers and flew them to British frigate Scylla (F.71). A Westland Lynx HAS.3 from Scylla recovered the remaining nine people.

Pakistani fishing vessel Al An Wari sank in the Gulf of Aden on 2 July 2010. On 5 July, a Lockheed P-3C Orion of Patrol Squadron (VP) 16, forward-deployed to Djibouti, spotted the 16 survivors in a life raft about 144 miles west of Socotra Island. The Orion directed an SH-60B flying from Elrod to the area. The Seahawk rescued 12 of the mariners and the frigate reached the area and saved the remaining four men.

The ship made her final deployment during a voyage to the Sixth Fleet in 2014, during which she steamed in the central Mediterranean as part of NATO’s Operation Active Endeavour, patrols in support of the Global War on Terrorism. Three armed Libyans seized commercial tanker Morning Glory, which Rear Adm. John Kirby, Pentagon Press Secretary, called a “stateless vessel,” early in March 2014. The ship carried oil owned by the Libyan government’s National Oil Co., but illicitly obtained from that country’s port of As-Sidra. The Libyan and Cypriot governments requested assistance, and coalition forces, including guided missile destroyers Roosevelt (DDG-80) and Stout (DDG-55), deployed as part of the George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) Carrier Strike Group, responded. In addition, a Sea, Air, Land (SEAL) team, attached to Special Operations Command Europe, deployed to Roosevelt. The destroyer provided helicopter support and served as a command and control and support ship when, just after 1500 on 16 March, the SEALs boarded and took control of Morning Glory in international waters just southeast of Cyprus, capturing the hijackers and freeing the crewmembers. Stout dispatched a team of sailors that boarded the tanker and relieved the SEALs, and which then helped sail the ship to Libyan waters. Elrod relieved Stout on 19 March. Elrod turned Morning Glory over to the Libyan authorities in international waters outside Libya, and they brought the ship into Zawiya, Libya, on 22 March.

Elrod was stricken from the Naval Vessel Register and decommissioned on 30 January 2015 at Naval Station Norfolk, Va. She lies berthed at the Naval Sea Systems Command (NavSea) Inactive Ships On-site Maintenance Office at Philadelphia, Pa.

Detailed history under construction.

Mark L. Evans

4 March 2015


Published: Tue Jul 07 13:26:29 EDT 2015