USS Slater - Destory Escort Historical Museum



Surviving Destroyer Escorts

Excluding the SLATER, there are currently nine destroyer escorts believed to exist around the world. Two of these ships are preserved as museums, the rest are still in some form of service in foreign fleets. Of the following ships, only the USS SLATER DE766 is preserved and maintained in its World War II configuration. As of this writing, the surviving destroyer escorts are as follows:

The ex-USS ATHERTON DE169 is currently in service with the Philippine Navy as the BRP RAJAH HUMABON. Although the ship is in good condition, it has been heavily modified from its original configuration. The ex-USS HEMMINGER DE746 was transferred to Thailand and recommissioned as the PIN KLAO. The ship was active in the Thai fleet until at least 1999 and is now believed to be used only as a training hulk.

The ex-USS FORSTER DE334 was transferred to the South Vietnamese Navy in 1971. Renamed the RVNS TRAN KHANH DU, the ship was captured in dry dock by North Vietnamese forces after the fall of Saigon in 1975. The North Vietnamese renamed the ship the VPNS DAI KY and kept it in active service until at least 1997. The ship is now believed to be used as a training hulk. The ex-USS HURST DE250 was transferred to the Mexican Navy in 1973 and recommissioned as the ARM MANUEL AZUETA. The ship was still in service as of 2000, but like the ex-USS ATHERTON, the AZUETA has been heavily modified from its original destroyer escort configuration.

Like the ex-USS FORSTER, the ex-USS CAMP DE251 was transferred to South Vietnam in 1971. The ship escaped the fall of South Vietnam and sailed to the Philippines, where it was officially transferred to that nation in 1976. Recommissioned as the PNS RAJAH LAKANDULA, the ship remained on active duty until 1988. The ship is currently used as a barracks ship in Subic Bay, Philippine Islands.

The ex-USS THOMAS J. GARY DE326 was transferred to the Tunisian Navy in 1973. The ship was recommissioned as the PRESIDENT BOURGHIBA and placed on active duty. The ship was eventually renamed again to the INDAKH. Following a serious fire onboard the ship in 1992, the INDAKH is currently serving as an immobile headquarters and accommodation ship in Bizerte, Tunisia. The ex-USS RUCHAMKIN DE228/APD89, a former high speed transport, was transferred to the Colombian Navy in 1969. After a decade of service as the CORDOBA, the ship was decommissioned. The interior of the ship was scrapped, but the gutted ship was put on display, where it remains today near Bogotá, Colombia.

The last two destroyer escorts are preserved as museum ships. The ex-USS REYBOLD DE177 was transferred to the Brazilian Navy in 1953. The ship served as the BAURU until 1982, when it was decommissioned and restored as a museum ship. The ship is currently berthed near Rio de Janeiro, and though some of its equipment has been removed, the BAURU is generally in excellent condition. The USS STEWART DE238 was decommissioned after World War II service in 1946. Donated to the state of Texas in 1974, the STEWART is currently a museum ship in Galveston. After a lengthy period of neglect, the STEWART has been undergoing major renovation and repair for the past several years. Although the ship is generally in good condition, it is missing a great deal of equipment and armament. The USS STEWART was added to the National Register in 2007 and is currently undergoing repairs following damage done by Hurricane Ike in 2008.