x-Neosho T-AO143 under tow to International Ship breaking Limited LLC to be recycled.
Cape Hatteras towing, Signet Defender assisting and Signet Courageous assisting.

See ships that are saved

International Shipbreaking Limited LLC's Robert L. Berry, retired Ships Master, has provided these photos
Matt Nowinski, the son of USS Neosho crew member Stanley Nowinski, made us aware of these photos

 was the first of
constructed in the 50's

Two Images have links

April 11, 2005  -  Starting at the Bow

May 1, 2005 - Bow is Going  Click for close up.

May 17, 2005 - Bow is Dismantled 
Click for close up.

June 17, 2005 - Command Area is gone

Click on Neosho Class Kawishiwi for a plan that displays how the Oilers were constructed.

Neosho Class Elevation


Vern talked to an ISL scrapping person on April 21, 2005. He had called Vern to see if he knew who the original boilers were installed by, the names were obscure. Vern directed him to a pipe fitter who was aboard AO-146 when she was constructed. The caller mentioned that the ship markings were of AO-147 which would make her the Truckee. Steve Lewis of the Truckee, received the same phone call and said he was mistaken, it really is the AO-143.

The interest in the Neosho has been surprising. We get interest in just about all of the Naval vessels we dismantle...but the Neosho has generated more than most. Thanks   Robert L. Berry
Co-Chief Operating Officer; International Shipbreaking Limited LLC

Just wanted to say thanks for the pictures of the Neosho on her last voyage. It almost wanted to make me cry to see her torn apart like that. I guess we are all getting old and hate to see things that were once a part of our life destroyed and gone forever. I am looking forward to going to the Neosho reunion this September to re-live some of those great memories.
Thanks again,  USS Neosho  BM3  1967-68  Steve R.

What a shame. Our boilers on Mispillion were type K boilers. They were B and W, Babcock and Wilcox. Neosho probably had the D type boilers. The type of boilers is named after the letter that the boiler is shaped like. If you looked at Missy's boilers from the side, it resembled the letter K. The D type resembles the letter D, so on and so forth. Steve Dengler, AO-105.

Damn, what a sad state of affairs. Makes me wish I had stayed in longer than one hitch. I just reached First Class PO before leaving the Hassayampa, never even wore the 3 stripes. Those were great old days !  Time marches on (damn it) one day each of us will be "scrapped" like those grand old ladies. Paul Ebeyer AO-145

I was on AO-144, but it still hurts to see how some of the old ships die. I still remember the meeting we had at sea with the Neosho where we could almost jump across.  Chuck Whitley

It is funny how when you are stationed on a ship, it is no big deal, but when one goes "down", it is a sad occasion. I knew when I was on the Kawishiwi, it wasn’t a "glory ship." No one in the service fleet ever felt like they were doing anything important... I know I didn’t. Yet when I look back, my ship carried ammo for the destroyers, spare parts for the planes on the carriers, stores to feed the sailors, and of course fuel for the planes, ships, and even for the jeeps in Nam. When we were in 60-80 foot seas, that hunk of steel kept me alive. It took me to countries I still talk about 30+ years later. It let me meet kids from all around the country and even the Orient. So when I see one of them going down... a piece of me goes with it. To old ships, old times, old sailors... Long may we wave! Rocky Marcellus

A nice tribute that you left on the web site.  I felt that a part of me went with each of the 6 ships that took me and the 475th across the Atlantic...even the Eastern Prince when she was sunk by the Japs in the Pacific. Gene Herbener, Vern's High School Geometry Teacher.

Thx for sharing a very memory provoking piece. Really appreciate it. Jack Finley, Kawishiwi 77-79 CO.

AW! That really breaks my heart to see Neosho going off to the breakers. . . . .Mississinewa was tied up right next to her in the James River last time I saw them a couple of years ago. . . .I suppose the “Ol Miss” may be next. . . . .I WILL have to go ashore and get blitzed when THAT happens. . . .Thanks for the “heads-up” my friend. . . . .Regards, Jerry Jones ET1, USS Mississinewa

Damn you sent me some nice web sites......and some sad ones as well....that photo of the USS Neosho being towed to the scrap yard just about broke my heart.....I was only on her for about 6 months, as I was with the USS Truckee , and about 1 1/2 years on the Mississinewa, but it's sad to see such a beautiful ship at one time so rusty and stripped of her dignity.  I've seen somewhere that the USS Chikaskia has been scrapped a long time ago, but had no idea that the Neosho class tankers were on the one old sailor put it, he'll have to get blitzed when the Missy goes.  I wish I would have started looking for my old ships sooner, but I've only had my computer for about 3 years now.  To answer one of your questions, I was on board the Mississinewa most of 1964 and about 6 months of 1965. Being with the Flag, when Truckee and Neosho came to the Med for 6 month cruises, I served aboard them for approx. 6 months each. I'll have to do some research to see if I can figure out  how long the Flag was on the Neosho type tankers, but the Missy had a Flag for years before I got there in 1964.  I can't tell you how much I appreciate your web site.  It brings back soooooooo many memories.  I'll be in touch.....Dave

Very interesting photos and comments.  To me, it is kind of symbolic of the industrial might of America ... once proud and capable, today is being gradually dismantled as more and more jobs are sent overseas. 
Ernie Kuhlmann, Friend of Vern's

Thanks for sending this.  It was interesting.  I had never seen pictures of a ship being dismantled. I don't know which would seem to be a worse fate for a ship, being dismantled or being used as a target ship. I guess if it was used as a target ship, at least we would know where it is resting.  Being dismantled will leave no trace.  I hope someone was able to salvage a few mementos from her, like bell, plaque, etc.
Glen Peterson, Long time friend of Vern's and a sailor.

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