USS Tarawa (CVS-40) Patch – Sew On
A 3 11/16″W x 4″H squadron patch of the USS Tarawa (CVS-40).
USS Tarawa (CV/CVA/CVS-40, AVT-12) was one of 24 Essex-class aircraft carriers built during and shortly after World War II for the United States Navy. The ship was the first US Navy ship to bear the name, and was named for the bloody 1943 Battle of Tarawa. Tarawa was commissioned in December 1945, too late to serve in World War II. After serving a short time in the Far East, it was decommissioned in 1949. She was soon recommissioned after the Korean War began, serving in the Atlantic as a replacement for carriers sent to Korea. In the early 1950s, she was redesignated an attack carrier (CVA) and then an antisubmarine warfare carrier (CVS). Except for one tour in the Far East, she spent her entire second career operating in the Atlantic and Caribbean. Consequently, Tarawa was the only ship of her class to never see combat action.
Unlike many of her sisters, Tarawa received no major modernizations, and thus throughout her career retained the classic appearance of a World War II Essex-class ship. She was decommissioned in 1960, and while in reserve was redesignated an aircraft transport (AVT). She was sold for scrap in 1968.
Construction and commissioning
Tarawa was 888 ft (270.7 m) long, had a beam of 93 ft (28.3 m), an extreme width of 147 ft 6 in (45.0 m), and a draft of 28 ft 7 in (8.7 m). She had a top speed of 32.7 kn (60.6 km/h; 37.6 mph), displaced 27,100 t (26,672.0 long tons; 29,872.6 short tons), and a complement of 3,448 men. She was armed with 12 5 in (127.0 mm) guns, and 72 40 mm (1.6 in).
Tarawa was one of the “long-hull” Essex-class ships. She was laid down on 11 March 1944 at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, Virginia. She was launched 12 May 1945, sponsored by Mrs. Julian C. Smith (the wife of Lieutenant General Julian C. Smith, USMC, who commanded the 2nd Marine Division at Tarawa). She was commissioned on 8 December 1945, with Captain Alvin Ingersoll Malstrom in command.