The USS Mullinnix DD-944 was a Forrest Sherman-class destroyer. This highlights impressive naval expertise and notable historical importance. Picture this: A sleek, powerful ship cutting through waves like butter, armed to the teeth with advanced weaponry.
Discover what sets this extraordinary warship apart from the rest. Well, strap in because we're about to embark on a voyage across time - from its construction and commissioning right up until its decommissioning.
We'll dive into Admiral Henry M. Mullinnix's life – the namesake behind this formidable force. This article covers the dimensions, propulsion system, speed range, and crew size of the USS Mullinix as well as summarizing some shipmate recollections of time served aboard..
We will chronicle the key missions of the USS Mullinnix DD-944 during her many years of service. So let's do this!?
USS Mullinnix DD-944: An Overview
The USS Mullinnix DD-944, an unwavering destroyer of the United States Navy from the esteemed Forrest Sherman-class, proudly showcases a remarkable history. Its story begins with its construction and launch in 1957 at Bath Iron Works in Maine.
Commissioned on March 7, 1958 under the command of Cmdr. J.B. Drachnik, this formidable vessel was named after Admiral Henry M. Mullinnix - a renowned naval aviator lost during World War II.
|Class & Type:||Forrest Sherman-class Destroyer|
|Laid down:||July 5, 1956 by Bath Iron Works Corporation, ME.|
|Displacement:||4180 tons (full load)|
|Length:||439' - long overall; Beam: 47'|
A Legacy Etched in Steel
The story of USS Mullinnix is one written across decades and oceans alike—from her participation in Operation Sea Orbit, a demonstration of nuclear-powered surface ships' global capabilities, to her decommissioning in 1983. However, it surpasses mere steel and statistics; it encompasses the individuals who nobly served on this formidable destroyer, etching their mark in the annals of naval history.
The Ship's Namesake: Admiral Henry M. Mullinnix
Admiral Henry Maston Mullinnix, a man of valor and resilience, is the namesake of USS Mullinnix DD-944. Born in 1892, Admiral Henry Maston Mullinnix hails from Spencer, Indiana and was devoted to serving his country since youth.
Mullinnix entered United States Naval Academy, beginning his journey as a midshipman at age sixteen. He was part of the class that graduated early due to World War I demands.
Following graduation, he saw action during both World Wars. His skills and leadership didn't go unnoticed; they earned him promotions over time—eventually rising to the rank of Rear Admiral.
Rise Through Ranks & Notable Achievements
In between wars, Admiral Mullinnix showed keen interest in aviation—a relatively novel concept then—and trained as naval aviator number 3101 at Pensacola. His love for aviation led him to hold significant positions, including being the Commanding Officer of Saratoga's prestigious Fighting Squadron Three.
During WWII though things took an unexpected turn when USS Liscome Bay, got torpedoed under his command by Japanese submarine off Gilbert Islands. Despite this tragic end on November 24th, 1943—it's fair saying that Admiral’s life epitomized bravery till its very last moment.
A Legacy Cemented
Admiral Mullinnix's bravery and service were acknowledged posthumously when the Forrest Sherman-class destroyer, USS Mullinnix DD-944, was christened in his honor. The ship served as a constant reminder of Admiral’s dedication to his country.
honoring a hero from World War II. The USS Mullinnix set sail for the first time on March 7th, 1958, performing its duty with distinction.
Technical Specifications of USS Mullinnix DD-944
|Type:||A Forrest Sherman-class destroyer.|
|Built by:||Built at Bath Iron Works in Maine.|
|Commissioned:||Commissioned into service on February 7, 1958.|
|Laid Down:||Laid down on May 17, 1957.|
|Decommissioned:||The warship was retired from active duty on October 31, 1990.|
|Main Armament:||Three 5-inch/54 caliber guns housed in twin mounts. These were capable of rapid fire at both surface and air targets. In addition, the ship carried two dual Mk32 torpedo tube launchers.|
|Modifications:||Over the years, USS Mullinnix was modified several times. When modified to modernize and to add anti-aircraft guided missiles.|
Armament of USS Mullinnix DD-944
The armory aboard the USS Mullinnix DD-944 was as impressive as it was diverse, a true testament to the might of naval warfare. Let's take a closer look at some of its features.
Main Battery: Dual Purpose Guns
Equipped with three 5'/54 caliber Mark 42 guns, this ship was armed to handle both air and surface threats. These versatile weapons boasted impressive range and accuracy, capable of launching explosive shells with precision. They served as the primary firepower, always prepared to engage enemy ships or aircraft when called upon.
To tackle underwater threats, four Mk32 triple torpedo tubes came into play. Loaded with Mk46 torpedoes designed for anti-submarine warfare (ASW), these launchers gave submarines reasons to think twice before engaging in combat against this formidable destroyer.
A well-placed salvo from these launchers could spell doom for any unsuspecting submarine lurking beneath the waves.
Anti-Aircraft Missiles & Anti-Submarine Rockets
Rounding out its armament were two Terrier missile launchers dedicated to taking down airborne targets while also providing a degree of surface strike capability. A single launcher carried around forty missiles - quite an arsenal by anyone’s measure.
|Type Of Weapon System:||Description:|
|Dual-Purpose Guns:||Mk42 5'/54 Caliber Gun Mounts x 4|
|Torpedo Launchers:||Mk32 Triple Torpedo Tubes x 4|
|Anti-Aircraft Missiles:||Terrier Missile Launcher System x 2|
The USS Mullinnix was a formidable force, equipped with Terrier missiles, Mk32 triple torpedo tubes, and potent artillery..
Deployment History of USS Mullinnix DD-944
The USS Mullinnix (DD-944), a Forrest Sherman-class destroyer, had an eventful and distinguished service record. The ship was launched on August 7, 1957, by Bath Iron Works Corp., Bath Maine.
First Deployment: Med Cruise
In November 1959, she set sail on her first voyage for a six-month tour with NATO forces. This journey established her as a formidable presence in international waters. Throughout this period, she engaged in various exercises to strengthen allied maritime defenses.
Vietnam War Service
The ship sailed from Mayport for Southeast Asia via Cape Horn late in January 1966 to join Seventh Fleet operations off Vietnam coast. She played an instrumental part during Operation Sea Dragon where enemy supply lines were disrupted by sea strikes. After five months of strenuous but fruitful missions disrupting North Vietnamese logistics efforts and lending gunfire support to troops ashore, she returned home having left an indelible mark through effective operation execution.
Cold War Operations
During much of the later half of her career spanning several years into early nineties - prior decommissioning - she operated extensively around Atlantic region executing both surveillance and fleet reinforcement tasks. Her contribution in enforcing the Truman Doctrine, designed to prevent Communist expansion during the Cold War, is noteworthy.
Final Years of Service
Throughout the late 1980s and early '90s, USS Mullinnix was deployed on multiple missions for Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm. She remained vigilant in her duty until October 4th, 1991 when she was decommissioned after nearly three decades of service.
Shipmate Accounts of time aboard the USS Mullinnix
The Final Farewell
Decommissioning was an emotional event for many shipmates. After years of serving together, it was time to say goodbye not just to their comrades but also the vessel they called home. This marked the end of one journey and beginning of another as civilians or on other assignments within Navy.
No matter the time or weather, our devoted squad stands prepared and enthusiastic to aid you. No matter the hour or weather, be confident that our committed squad is ever prepared and willing to give aid.
Role in Major Conflicts
It sailed through tumultuous times and played an instrumental role in major conflicts such as the Vietnam War and Cold War.
Vietnam War: An Unyielding Force
Drafted into service during the heart of the Vietnam War, this ship did not flinch from its duty. Between 1966 and 1970, it completed six deployments to South East Asia.
Mullinnix became synonymous with endurance as she weathered numerous encounters with enemy forces. The ship provided naval gunfire support for ground troops on countless occasions, ensuring they could push back against encroaching Viet Cong forces effectively.
|USS Mullinnix Conflict Engagements Summary:|
|Enduring Legacy of Bravery and Service|
|Vietnam Service Medals:||5|
|Cold War Surveillance Missions:||Numerous (Classified)|
war effort. She was a brilliant exemplar of boldness and dedication, continually commended for her steadfast loyalty to the task in hand. The USS Mullinnix's valor in these turbulent times serves as an enduring testament to her crew's bravery.
Awards and Commendations of USS Mullinnix DD-944
The story of the USS Mullinnix DD-944 is not complete without mentioning the numerous awards it earned during its years in service. The crew's commitment, bravery and expertise were recognized through the awarding of several unit commendations.
In recognition for their remarkable efforts during times of conflict, they were awarded several unit commendations. Among these was the highly prestigious Navy Unit Commendation, which acknowledges extraordinary heroism against an armed enemy force.
This ship didn't just receive one Navy Unit Commendation but two. The first came from actions in Vietnam between November 1966 and May 1967. Then again she received this honor for operations conducted from April to October 1972.
Vietnam Service Medal with Silver Star Attachment
Beyond unit commendations, another badge of honor carried by this ship is the Vietnam Service Medal with Silver Star attachment. This medal was bestowed upon those who served in military operations within Vietnamese waters between July 1965 and March 1973. Learn more about this award here.
Meritorious Unit Commendation (MUC)
The MUC is yet another feather added to USS Mullinnix’s cap. Awarded twice - once on September 30th, 1970 and then on August 9th, 1971 - this citation recognized her exceptional performance under trying circumstances while participating directly or indirectly in combat.
Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation
The USS Mullinnix DD-944 was also the recipient of the Republic of Vietnam Gallantry Cross Unit Citation. This decoration is given for extraordinary heroism while fighting an armed enemy. The ship received this award twice during its deployment in Vietnamese waters.
Navy E Ribbon
Finally, we should also talk about another noteworthy honor - the Navy E Ribbon. Often referred to as the 'Battle Efficiency Award,' it's an accolade that recognizes...
Impact on Naval Warfare
It wasn't merely the size or velocity of this vessel that made it a game-changer, but its tactical utilization.
Tactics and Technology: A Leap Forward
The USS Mullinnix was involved in multiple operations that introduced innovative tactics during its years of service. For instance, during the Vietnam War, she used gunfire support missions effectively against enemy positions. This tactic was so effective that it served as a model for other destroyers in comparable battles.
Beyond tactics, technology also took center stage aboard the USS Mullinnix. The ship's weapons systems were regularly upgraded to stay ahead of potential threats and offer superior firepower when needed.
Pioneering Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW)
The technological advancements on board extended beyond surface-to-surface combat; they ventured beneath the waves as well. As one of the early adopters of ASROC (Anti-Submarine Rocket) system—an unorthodox blend of rocket science and sonar—the USS Mullinnix significantly advanced anti-submarine warfare strategies. Learn more about ASROC here.
A Model for Future Destroyers
Bearing the name of Admiral Henry M. Mullinnix – an influential figure in naval aviation – the ship embodied his values: courage, leadership, and commitment to duty. But let's delve deeper into what makes its legacy so profound.
A Pillar During Major Conflicts
The USS Mullinnix played pivotal roles in significant conflicts like the Vietnam War and Cold War. The NavSource Naval History website chronicles these events vividly - each mission undertaken by this powerhouse adds another chapter to its enduring story.
Serving as a protective shield for aircraft carriers or launching offensive strikes against enemy positions marked her deployments during wartime periods such as Operation Sea Dragon.
Innovations & Advancements
Military technology evolved dramatically over time because ships like USS Mullinnix DD-944 pushed boundaries relentlessly. It didn't just adapt to changes; it spearheaded them.
An example can be found on Destroyer History Foundation’s webpage, which describes the Forrest Sherman-class destroyers as trendsetters in their use of dual-purpose guns and guided-missile systems.