USS Frank Cable (AS-40)

USS Frank Cable (AS-40) at anchor in Hong Kong's Victoria Harbor in May 2011
with USS Hampton (SSN-767) alongside.
U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jeremy Starr/Released)

USS Frank Cable (AS-40) is the second Emory S. Land (AS-39)-class submarine tender built by the Lockheed Shipbuilding and Construction Company of Seattle, Washington for the United States Navy.
The ship was christened on 14 January 1978 by Mrs. Rose A. Michaelis, wife of Admiral F. H. Michaelis, then Chief of Naval Material. The ship is named for Frank Cable, an electrical engineer who had worked as an electrician and trial captain for the USS Holland (SS-1).
USS Frank Cable was designed as a submarine tender for Los Angeles-class submarines. The ship spent 1980 until 1996 as the repair ship for SUBRON 4 and 18 in Charleston, South Carolina, tending Sturgeon and Benjamin Franklin-class submarines. Frank Cable began decommissioning in 1996, but then was reactivated and refitted to replace the USS Holland (AS-32) in the Western Pacific as Commander Seventh Fleet's mobile repair and support platform.
Since arriving in Guam, USS Frank Cable has visited many Western Pacific ports in support of U.S. forces. In 1997, the ship was heavily involved with the rescue and recovery efforts following the Korean Air Flight 801 crash on Guam, and also in the recovery and clean-up efforts following Typhoon Paka. From 1980 to 2010, USS Frank Cable garnered many awards as a unit of both the U.S. Atlantic and Pacific Fleets, including nine Meritorious Unit Commendations, Twelve Battle Efficiency "E" awards and four Golden Anchor Awards. Frank Cableís most recent recognition was a Humanitarian Service Medal for support provided in recovery efforts on Guam following Super Typhoon Pongsona in 2002.

Who was Frank Cable?

Frank Taylor Cable (1863-1945) was an early pioneer in submarine development for the U.S. Navy. He was the civilian commander of the developmental submarine USS Holland (SS-1)before it was accepted for U.S. Navy service and commissioned in 1900. As an associate of the inventor John Holland, Frank Cable specialized in the design and production of propulsion machinery, including diesel engines and electric motors. He was one of the founders of the Electric Boat Company. General Dynamics- Electric Boat continues in existence today, constructing our nation's most modern nuclear powered submarines of the Seawolf and Virginia classes.

Commander Tim Sparks, XO of the USS Frank Cable (AS40), arranged for the members of USSVI Blueback Base, and their families to tour the ship and share the noon meal with the crew on 24 June 2012.

The members of the Blueback Base wish to thank Captain Nelson Hildreth, Commander Sparks and the entire crew of the Frank Cable for their gracious invitation to share their ship (and home) with us and their hospitality while we were aboard!

PORTLAND, Ore. (NNS) -- Blueback Base Submarine veteranís toured submarine tender USS Frank Cable (AS 40), June 24, after the ship completed a $30 million overhaul in Portland, Ore.
During the visit, Frank Cable Sailors led several tours for 70 submarine veterans [including their families] through the ship's spaces including the galley, carpenter shop, sheet metal shop, machine shop, boat deck, CO's and XO's staterooms, ship's store and the bridge.
"All the feedback I have gotten from participating members has been nothing short of outstanding," said Blueback Base Commander Ray Lough.  "The crew showed us every courtesy and answered all questions.  We were amazed at all the capabilities the USS Frank Cable has."
"They were all very impressed by the crew and very happy," said Frank Cable's Executive Officer Cmdr. Timothy Sparks, who is also a member of another submarine veteran organization, Bowfin Base out of Pearl Harbor.
The Blueback Base is one of several submarine veteran organizations who promote the remembrance of shipmates that gave their lives for their country and served in the submarine force.
"The submarine veterans' purpose is to bring together prior and existing submarine Sailors and officers to remember the sacrifices our shipmates gave, and every meeting we have a moment of silence for our lost shipmates," said Sparks.
"We all served and it is important to us and the country that we be reminded of why we served and to see how our Navy has progressed without us," said Lough.  "We have grandchildren and nephews and nieces that may be looking for a career and we can make suggestions about what the Navy has to offer."
Three World War II veterans attended the tour including Tudor Davis, a retired submariner who served aboard the USS Halibut (SS 232).  [WW II Veteran's Fred Carneau, who served aboard a LST at Normandy and later volunteered in submarines and qualified on the USS Entemedor (SS-340) in 1947 and Clair Pense who qualified aboard the USS Grouper (SS-214) we also in attendance.]
"Oh it was terrific," said Davis.  "I was never on a tender before except to walk across to go on liberty.  Now I'm seeing the whole thing and it's beautiful."
The tour ended with the veterans eating lunch on the mess deck with the Sailors.  All of the veterans said it was a visit they would never forget.
"We wish all of the crew fair winds and following seas, and a safe journey home," said Lough.  "Thank you again for a wonderful experience."
Frank Cable is temporarily relieved from conducting maintenance of submarines and surface vessels deployed in the 7th Fleet area of responsibility by the submarine tender USS Emory S. Land (AS 39).
Following the dry-docking and maintenance, sea trials will be conducted prior to Frank Cable transitioning back to Guam.
By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Chris Salisbury, USS Frank Cable Public Affairs

These Pictures were supplied by the crew of the USS Frank Cable


Pictures from USSVI

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Last    Tuesday 17 July 2012.
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