Named for the state of South Carolina.
(DLGN-37: displacement 10,000; length 585'0"; beam 63'0"; draft 30'6"; speed 30 knots (trial); complement 497; armament 2 missile launchers, 2 5-inch, ASROC, Standard, Harpoon, Tartar, 2 21-inch torpedo tubes, 2 40 millimeter; class California)
The fifth South Carolina (DLGN-37), a nuclear-powered guided missile frigate, was laid down on 1 December 1970 at Newport News, Va., by the Newport News Shipbuilding & Dry Dock Co.; launched on 1 July 1972; sponsored by Mrs. J. Fred Buzhardt; and commissioned on 25 January 1975, Capt. William C. Neel in command.
Upon commissioning, South Carolina steamed to Charleston, S.C., to repeat the traditional post-commissioning visit to the state of South Carolina. There she received a silver service for the wardroom symbolic of the close ties between the frigate and her namesake state. Immediately thereafter, South Carolina joined the Atlantic Fleet nuclear task force, operating out of Norfolk, Virginia. On 30 June 1975, S0uth Carolina was reclassified as a cruiser, CGN-37.
Ultimately, after 24.1 years of service, South Carolina was decommissioned and stricken from the Naval Vessel Register on 30 July 1999. Ex-South Carolina arrived at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard, Bremerton, Wash., on 13 March 2000 for recycling, which began on 1 October 2007 and was completed on 10 May 2010. The ship's bow stands as a memorial at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard.
Updated, Robert J. Cressman
13 January 2022