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USS Denver (LPD-9)

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Title: USS Denver (LPD-9)  
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Subject: Austin-class amphibious transport docks, USS Denver, USS Blue Ridge (LCC-19), BRP Dagupan City (LC-551), HMAS Brunei (L 127)
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

USS Denver (LPD-9)

USS Denver (LPD-9)
USS Denver LPD-9
United States
Name: USS Denver
Namesake: City of Denver, Colorado
Operator:  United States Navy
Awarded: 23 May 1963
Builder: Lockheed Shipbuilding
Laid down: 7 July 1964
Launched: 23 January 1965
Commissioned: 26 October 1968
Decommissioned: 14 August 2014
Homeport: Sasebo, Japan
Motto: "America's 911 LPD" "Oldest Gator in the Swamp", "A Mile High, A Mile Ahead"
Nickname(s): "D9" "Liberty D9ed"
Status: Decommissioned 14 August 2014
General characteristics
Class & type: Austin class amphibious transport dock
Tonnage: 9,687 tons
Displacement: 17,425 tons
Length: 171 meters (570 ft) overall
Beam: 25.2 meters (84 ft)
Propulsion: Two boilers, two steam turbines, two shafts, 24,000 shaft horsepower (18 MW)
Speed: 21 knots (39 km/h)
Complement: 24 officers, 396 enlisted, 900 marines
Armament: Two 25 mm Mk 38 guns; two Phalanx CIWS; and eight .50-calibre (12.7 mm) machine guns.
Aircraft carried: Up to six CH-46 Sea Knight helicopters

USS Denver (LPD-9), an Austin-class amphibious transport dock, is the third ship of United States Navy to bear this name. Denver’s keel was laid 7 July 1964 at Lockheed Shipbuilding and Construction Company, Seattle, Washington. She was launched 23 January 1965, christened by Mrs. John A. Love, wife of the Governor of Colorado, and commissioned 26 October 1968. After 46 years of service, the Denver was decommissioned at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam on 14 August 2014. At the time of her decommissioning, Denver was the oldest deployable warship in the U.S. Navy, and the last active warship commissioned in the 1960s.


  • History 1
    • Role in the SS Columbia Eagle mutiny 1.1
    • Vietnam War, 1975 1.2
    • 1984 1.3
    • Collision with USNS Yukon 1.4
    • Typhoon Morakot 1.5
    • 2009 Sumatra earthquakes 1.6
    • 2010 1.7
    • 2011 1.8
    • Decommissioning 1.9
  • References 2
  • External links 3


Role in the SS Columbia Eagle mutiny

In 1970, the USS Denver played a key role in the SS Columbia Eagle incident. When the SS Columbia Eagle was commandeered by two mutinous crew members on 14 March 1970, Denver was immediately dispatched to intercept and recapture Columbia Eagle.

Vietnam War, 1975

In April 1975, Denver participated in Operation Frequent Wind, the evacuation of Saigon, Vietnam.[1]


Denver took part in Westpac 84 and took part in several operations including Operation Beach Guard, Operation Cobra Gold, & Operation Valiant Usher. On her return trip in December 1984, Denver participated in a tiger cruise. It was during this time that she collided with USS New Orleans in a refueling exercise, New Orleans who had her elevator out and smashed into the Denver several times.

Collision with USNS Yukon

On 13 July 2000, the ship was participating in a refueling exercise near the end of a deployment. Denver, off the coast of Oahu, collided with its refueling vessel, USNS Yukon. Denver‍ '​s bow was seriously damaged.[2][3] It remained in port at Pearl Harbor undergoing repairs for two weeks.[4]

Typhoon Morakot

Beginning on 17 August 2009 Denver started rendering humanitarian assistance to Taiwan due to the destruction caused by Typhoon Morakot. Denver was tasked independently to render aid, along with two embarked squadrons, HM-14 and HSC-25. They were supporting efforts by airlifting food, medical supplies, and providing heavy lift support for earth moving equipment to assist with recovery efforts.[5] Due to the sensitive nature surrounding Taiwan, especially with the One China policy, the Department of Defense did not publicly announce relief efforts. Denver was planned to be in the vicinity of Taiwan until 22 August 2009 to render aid to the people of Taiwan. Denver had just completed Talisman Saber 2009 and was on her way to her homeport when she was directly tasked with this humanitarian mission.

2009 Sumatra earthquakes

The Denver was sent to Sumatra to assist in the recovery efforts following the earthquakes there in September 2009.[6]


During the 2010 Fall Patrol, from 1 September to 25 November 2010, Denver accompanied the USS Essex and USS Harpers Ferry on a tour of Southeast Asia. During the patrol, Denver took part in the 60th anniversary of the invasion of Incheon, Korea and assisted the Philippines in the wake of Typhoon Megi. On 17 November, Denver, Essex and Harpers Ferry became the first U.S. warships to visit Hong Kong's Victoria Harbour in more than two years.


The ship departed Sasebo in September 2011 for a patrol of the western Pacific. Accompanying the ship were the USS Germantown and USS Essex.[7]


Denver was decommissioned on 14 August 2014 at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam in Hawaii.[8] She had been the oldest active duty ship in the US Navy behind the USS Constitution. Upon Denver's decommissioning, the USS Blue Ridge (LCC-19) became the Navy's second oldest ship.[9] The US government has offered to sell the ship to Malaysia to replace KD Sri Inderapura which was destroyed by fire in an accident in 2009.[10]

The Navy has announced that USS Green Bay (LPD-20) will replace Denver in Sasebo in summer 2015.[11]


  1. ^ By Sea, Air and Land: An Illustrated History of the U.S. Navy and the war in Southeast Asia Chapter 5: The Final Curtain, 1973-1975
  2. ^ [2]
  3. ^ USS Denver LPD 9.
  4. ^ The Lessons Learned--Times Four.
  5. ^ "MORAKOT: THE AFTERMATH: US helicopters to join rescue effort".  
  6. ^ McMichael, William H. (2 October 2009). "Pacific Command sends aid to storm-torn areas". Navy Times. Retrieved 2009-10-03. 
  7. ^ Stars and Stripes, "Essex Ready Group and 31st MEU underway for fall patrol", 26 September 2011.
  8. ^ Peterson, Lt. j.g. Jonathan K (13 August 2014). "USS Denver to Decommission after 46 Years of Service". Commander, US Pacific Fleet, US Navy. Retrieved 15 August 2014. 
  9. ^ Sanders, Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Kelby (15 August 2014). "Blue Ridge Now 2nd Oldest Behind Constitution". USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19) Facebook page. US Navy. Retrieved 15 August 2014. U.S. 7th Fleet flagship USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19) now holds the honor of being the oldest ship in the U.S. Navy’s active duty fleet, next to USS Constitution, after the decommissioning of the USS Denver (LPD 9) Aug. 14. 
  10. ^ Malaysia to establish marine corps, naval base close to Shoal
  11. ^ USS Green Bay to Replace USS Denver in Japan

External links

  • Denverofficial website of USS
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  • USS Denver (LPD-9) command histories – Naval History & Heritage Command
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