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SUPSALV Supports Removal of Display Ship Barry

By NAVSEA Office of Corporate Communications | May 5, 2016

The U.S. Navy’s Supervisor of Salvage and Diving (SUPSALV) is supporting ship preparations and towing of the Display Ship Barry (DD 933) from Pier 2 at the Washington Navy Yard (WNY) May 7.

After more than 30 years as the display ship at the WNY and its ineligibility for listing in the National Register of Historic Places, the Barry was designated for disposal last year. The ship must be removed before renovation of Frederick Douglass Memorial Bridge as current plans call for a fixed-span bridge that would land-lock the ship.

The ship will be towed to the Naval Inactive Ship Maintenance Facility in Philadelphia to await its dismantling.

"With the arrival this week of the 400-ton crane, the team rigged the primary and emergency tow bridles on the bow of the ship and we removed masts to reduce the ship’s air draft as part of final preparations," said Jim Ruth, SUPSALV towing subject matter expert.

Other pre-tow tasks included surveying the hull to ensure it has sufficient strength for the trip, sounding the Anacostia River channel to verify the depth of water, calculating Display Ship Barry’s weight and stability, weight removal, and ballasting requirements, and developing the tow plan.

NAVSEA’s Surface Warfare Directorate was tasked with executing the overall effort. The Office of Director, Inactive Ships is leading the preparations, and facilitating the ship’s removal. 

"As an organization, NAVSEA is uniquely qualified to handle this mission," said William Boozer, project lead and director, Inactive Ships. "However, moving this historic ship safely and efficiently also required the assistance of Naval District Washington, Naval Support Activity Washington, U.S. Coast Guard, Naval Facilities Command, Naval Inactive Ships Maintenance Office Philadelphia, and various NAVSEA Technical Warrant Holders."

The ship’s departure coincides with the spring tide and is expected to raise the water level to 3.98 feet above mean high tide. After crossing the shoal at Hains Point and passing through the opened Fredrick Douglass Memorial Bridge, the tow will proceed under the Woodrow Wilson Bridge. The remainder of the route includes the transit south on the Potomac to the Chesapeake Bay. Then the ship will travel north, the length of the Chesapeake, to the Chesapeake and Delaware (C&D) Canal. After exiting the C&D, the tow will proceed up the Delaware River to Philadelphia.

Barry was the third Forrest Sherman-class destroyer built and the fourth vessel to bear the name of the Revolutionary War naval hero, Commodore John Barry. Commissioned Sept. 7, 1956, Barry served 26 years in the Atlantic and Pacific Fleets. The ship supported the 1958 Marine and Army airborne unit landing in Beirut, Lebanon. In 1962, Barry was a member of the task force that quarantined Cuba in response to evidence that Soviet missiles had been installed on the island. The ship was decommissioned Nov. 5, 1982 after 26 years of service.

The Office of Director, Inactive Ships (SEA 21I) is part of the Naval Sea Systems Command Surface Warfare Directorate and is responsible for ship inactivation, storage, reutilization and preparations for disposal of Navy non-nuclear ships. NAVSEA’s Office of the Director of Ocean Engineering, Supervisor of Salvage and Diving (SUPSALV) is responsible for all aspects of ocean engineering, including salvage, in-water ship repair, contracting, towing, diving safety and equipment maintenance and procurement.