USS Goodrich DD-831: Voyages and Valor

USS Goodrich DD-831: Voyages and Valor

The building of the USS Goodrich DD-831 commenced on July 1, 1944, at Bath Iron Works, in Bath, Maine. This destroyer belonged to the Gearing class. Was named in honor of Rear Admiral Caspar F. Goodrich, a naval officer from World War II. Construction was finalized on November 29, 1944. The ship officially joined the United States Navy on December 15, 1944.

One notable aspect of the USS Goodrich DD 831 was its state-of-the-art armament and technology. With five 5-inch/38 caliber guns, ten 21-inch torpedo tubes, and various anti-aircraft weaponry it held a presence in both surface and aerial combat scenarios. Its advanced radar systems and sonar capabilities further amplified its ability to detect and engage enemy threats.

The enduring legacy of USS Goodrich DD-831 within the US Navy is characterized by valor and dedication. Throughout its service history, the vessel actively participated in missions and campaigns including those during the Korean War and Vietnam War. It played a role, in safeguarding interests while ensuring the well-being of its crew members. The USS Goodrich DD-831 was recognized for its dedication to duty. The bravery of its crew earned commendations and awards such as the Navy Unit Commendation and the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal.

Belonging to the Gearing class of destroyers known for their role in providing aircraft protection to larger fleet ships the USS Goodrich DD-831 stood out for its speed, agility, and firepower. With a length of 390 feet and a displacement exceeding 3,500 tons, it commanded respect on the waters.

Tasked primarily with escorting and safeguarding aircraft carriers and other important vessels the USS Goodrich DD-831 played a role in defending against threats with its robust anti-aircraft capabilities. It also engaged in submarine warfare missions, and coastal patrols and provided naval gunfire support during amphibious operations.

The official commissioning of the USS Goodrich DD-831 into the United States Navy took place on December 15, 1944. This significant ceremony marked its commencement of service signifying an occasion for both its crew and the Navy at large. The launching of the ship marked the end of planning, building, and training efforts. It signified the USS Goodrich DD-831's preparedness to carry out its responsibilities in safeguarding the interests of the nation at sea. 

USS Goodrich DD-831 Framed Navy Ship Display
USS Goodrich DD-831 Framed Navy Ship Display

Design, Technology, Armament, and Weapons of USS Goodrich DD-831  

As a formidable warship classified as a Gearing class destroyer the USS Goodrich DD-831 served in the US Navy from 1945 to 1973. This section will explore aspects such as its design features, technological innovations, armament details, and weaponry systems that showcased its capabilities and contributions during duty.

The structure of USS Goodrich was meticulously crafted to endure challenging conditions. Measuring 390 feet in length with a displacement exceeding 3,500 tons it was engineered for resilience and maneuverability. Its steel hull provided robustness and defense against engagements. The ship's structure was designed with decks, sections, and living spaces, for the crew to ensure their comfort and efficiency during missions.

In terms of technology, the USS Goodrich was outfitted with radar and sonar systems enhancing its surveillance and detection abilities significantly. These systems enabled the ship to monitor and identify enemy ships, aircraft, and submarines providing awareness during combat operations. Additionally, advanced communication systems were in place to facilitate coordination with naval units and command posts.

The armament of the USS Goodrich played a role in its capabilities. Equipped with three 5 inch/38 caliber guns as its artillery the ship could deliver explosive shells rapidly to provide effective fire support in naval battles. It also featured a range of aircraft guns torpedoes and depth charges for defense against airborne and underwater threats.

The USS Goodrich's weaponry was further bolstered by its submarine warfare (ASW) capabilities. The ship boasted ASW systems like technology depth charges and anti-submarine torpedoes. The ship's systems enabled it to spot and confront enemy submarines playing a role in safeguarding convoys and naval task forces from dangers. 

USS Goodrich DD-831 Personalized Plaque
USS Goodrich DD-831 Personalized Plaque

Upgrade History, Mission Capabilities, and Fleet Contribution  

Over time, the USS Goodrich DD-831 underwent upgrades to improve its mission capabilities and enhance the fleet's overall strength. One notable upgrade included equipping the Tartar Guided Missile System in the 1950s. This enhancement transformed the ship into an aircraft platform capable of engaging multiple targets simultaneously. The Tartar system greatly bolstered the ship's air defense capabilities ensuring the fleet's safety and security during operations.

Over its history, the USS Goodrich has been instrumental in fulfilling missions worldwide. From deployments in regions like the Mediterranean, Caribbean, and Pacific, the ship has actively supported fleet objectives. Its versatility has proven invaluable in tasks such as escorting aircraft carriers conducting submarine patrols and engaging in joint military exercises.

Beyond its duties, the USS Goodrich has also served as a training platform for numerous sailors. It has equipped them with skills and experiences, vital for their naval careers. Furthermore, through participation in efforts during disasters or crises, the ship has made a meaningful impact by providing aid to affected communities. These actions underscore the Navy's dedication to security and humanitarian assistance. 

Framed Navy Discharge Certificate
Framed Navy Honorable Discharge Certificate

Memories Aboard the USS Goodrich (DD 831): Tales from the Crew

Marty Baccari served aboard the USS Goodrich (DD 831) from 1962 to 1963 as a TM3. He fondly recalls the Med cruise, which coincided with the Cuban missile crisis and a collision with a tanker. Despite the challenges, Marty remembers being just twenty years old and enjoying the French Riviera, Barcelona, and traversing the Corinth Canal, making history as the largest vessel to do so before joining the merchant marine for 35 years.

Doc Olendorff served as a Hospital Corpsman Striker on the USS Goodrich from 1966 to 1968. His most memorable day was in GTMO in 1967, where several crew members were injured, including one with a compound femur fracture and another with broken ribs. Doc seeks to reconnect with anyone who remembers that fateful day.

Bob Scarpetti, an SM2 on the USS Goodrich from 1961 to 1963, cherishes memories of the ship's adventures, including the Med cruise and the eventful collision with an oiler. He vividly recalls the bitterly cold Christmas in Naples without heat or hot water and misses the camaraderie shared with his shipmates.

James Tiblier served aboard the USS Goodrich as a 3rd Class from 1962 to 1963. He recalls the ship's repair work in Naples, enduring the chaotic environment with particles and asbestos flying everywhere as they cut off the bow for repairs.

Walter Baldus, a Radioman 3rd Class from 1962 to 1964, reflects on his time aboard the USS Goodrich. He remembers surviving a fierce storm off Cape Hatteras, enduring a Med cruise, and colliding with a tanker. Walter wonders about the fate of former shipmate Kelly.

Robert Pastre, also known as Bob, served as an SF(P) 2 on the USS Goodrich from 1956 to 1963. He fondly remembers three Med cruises and cherishes the friendships formed during his time on board. Robert regrets missing the 2009 reunion and eagerly awaits news of future gatherings.

Richard Beyers, an RD3, embarked on his first cruise to the Caribbean in late 1954 and subsequently toured the Mediterranean with the 6th Fleet until March 1956. His tour was extended to transit the Suez Canal and patrol the Red Sea, adding to his memorable naval experiences.

'Hook' Richards, an MM/2, reminisces about the transformative Med cruises that helped shape him into the man he is today. He expresses gratitude for the discipline of naval life aboard the USS Goodrich, which left an indelible mark on his character.

Robert Malsch, an ET2 from 1958 to 1961, affectionately recalls the USS Goodrich as a "good old ship" despite experiencing both great and challenging moments. He laments its fate as razor blades, wishing it could have been repurposed as an artificial reef.

Francis Harp, also known as Frank, served as an MM3 from 1961 to 1963. He reflects on the highs and lows of his time aboard, including a Med cruise in '62-'63 and a memorable collision with an oiler. Frank fondly reminisces about the camaraderie shared with his fellow crewmates during those days. 

Personalized Navy Veteran Push Pin Travel Map
Personalized Navy Veteran Push Pin Travel Map

Missions, Involvement in Key Conflicts, Recognitions, and Applause

The Gearing class destroyer USS Goodrich DD-831 made contributions to US Navy operations during its service years. It was deployed to parts of the world making impacts on national defense and global stability from the 1950s through the late 1970s. Its deployments included tasks, in the Atlantic, Mediterranean, and Pacific regions. The deployments enabled the ship to take part in a variety of operations, exercises, and joint maneuvers demonstrating its adaptability and preparedness to engage in any mission.

Throughout its service, the USS Goodrich played a role in significant conflicts. In the Korean War, the vessel was sent to the Korean Peninsula where it provided naval gunfire support to ground troops and carried out patrols to enforce the United Nations blockade. The destroyer's precise and efficient fire support was key in safeguarding forces and disrupting enemy actions. Moreover, during the Vietnam War, the USS Goodrich engaged in combat missions such as shore bombardments, interdiction tasks, and search and rescue operations. Its presence and firepower greatly contributed to the success of allied forces in that area.

For its performance and unwavering commitment to duty, the USS Goodrich was honored with awards and commendations. The ship received the Navy Unit Commendation for its service during the Korean War acknowledging its role in supporting ground forces and upholding the blockade. Additionally, it was recognized with the Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation for its achievements during the Vietnam War.

The ship's commendation highlighted its role in the success of allied operations and its unwavering dedication, to the mission. Moreover, individual crew members of the USS Goodrich were honored with awards such as the Navy Achievement Medal and the Purple Heart for their courage and valor during combat.

The USS Goodrich's legacy endures through the recognition it has garnered over time. Its name remains a symbol of the commitment and sacrifices made by its crew. The USS Goodrich Association, consisting of crew members and their families ensures that the ship's memory lives on by organizing reunions preserving records, and fostering camaraderie among those who served on board. The ship's contributions to conflicts along with its accolades stand as a testament to its honorable service and its esteemed position among United States Navy destroyers. 

USS Goodrich DD-831 Coffee Mug
USS Goodrich DD-831 Coffee Mug

USS Goodrich DD-831 Ship Specifications

Specification Details
Class Gearing Class
Commissioned April 24, 1945
Displacement 3,516 tons
Length 390 feet
Beam 41 feet
Draft 14.3 feet
Speed 37 knots
Complement 11 Officers
325 Enlisted
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