Rear Admiral John
Lorimer Worden (1818 - 1897):
Worden was born on 12 March 1818 in Westchester County, NY. He was appointed
midshipman in the Navy on 10 January 1834. He served his first three years in
the sloop-of-war Erie on the Brazilian Station. Following that, he was
briefly assigned to the sloop Cyane before reporting to the Naval School at
Philadelphia for seven months of instruction. He returned to sea in July 1840
for two years with the Pacific Squadron. Between 1844 and 1846, Worden was
stationed at the Naval Observatory in Washington, D.C. During the Mexican
War, he cruised the west coast, primarily in the store ship Southampton, but
in other ships as well.
In 1850, he
returned to the Naval Observatory for another two-year tour of duty. The
ensuing nine years were filled with sea duty which took Worden on several
cruises in the Caribbean and Mediterranean Seas. Brought to Washington early
in 1861, he received orders in April to carry secret dispatches - regarding
the reinforcement of Fort Pickens - south to the warships at Pensacola.
During the return journey north, Worden was arrested near Montgomery, Ala.,
and was held prisoner until exchanged about seven months later. Though still
ill as a result of his imprisonment, Comdr. Worden accepted orders to command
the new ironclad Monitor on 16 January 1862. He reported to her building site
at Greenpoint on Long Island and supervised her completion. He placed the new
warship in commission at the New York Navy Yard on 25 February and two days
later sailed for Hampton Roads. However, steering failure forced the ironclad
back to New York for repairs. On 6 March, she headed south again, this time
under tow by Seth Low.
On the afternoon
of 8 March, Worden's command approached Cane Henry, VA., while inside Hampton
Roads, the Confederacy's own ironclad, CSS Virginia, wreaked havoc with the
Union Navy's wooden blockading fleet. During that engagement, the Southern
warship sank the sloop Cumberland and severely damaged Congress and Minnesota
before retiring behind Sewell's Point. Arriving on the scene too late to
participate in the engagement, Worden and his command set about assisting the
grounded Minnesota. At daybreak on the 9th, Virginia emerged once more from
behind Sewell's Point to complete her reduction of the Federal fleet at
Hampton Roads. As the Confederate ironclad approached Minnesota, Worden
maneuvered Monitor put from the grounded ship's shadow to engage Virginia in
the battle that revolutionized naval warfare. For four hours, the two
iron-plated ships slugged it out as they maneuvered in the narrow channel of
Hampton Roads, pouring shot and shell at one another to almost no visible
effect. Three hours into the slug fest, Worden received facial wounds when a
Confederate shell exploded just outside the pilot house. He relinquished command
to his first officer, Samuel D. Green. About an hour later, Monitor withdrew
from the battle temporarily and, upon her return to the scene, found that
Virginia, too, had withdrawn. The first battle between steam-driven, armored
ships had ended in a draw.
After the battle,
Worden moved ashore to convalesce from his wounds. During that recuperative
period, he received the accolade of a grateful nation and the official thanks
of Congress. Late in 1862, he took command of the ironclad monitor Montauk and
placed her in commission at New York on 14 December 1862. Later in the month,
Worden took his new ship south to join the South Atlantic Blockading Squadron
off Port Royal, SC. On 27 January 1863, he led his ship in the bombardment of
A month later,
newly promoted Capt. Worden took his ship into the Ogeechee River, found the
Confederate privateer Rattlesnake (formerly CSS Nashville), and destroyed her
with five well-placed shots. His last action came of 7 April 1863, when
Montauk participated in an attack on Charleston, SC. Not long after the
Charleston attack, Capt. Worden received orders to shore duty in conjunction
with the construction of ironclads at New York. That assignment lasted until
the late 1860's. In 1869, he began a five-year tour as Superintendent of the
Naval Academy during which he was promoted to rear admiral. During the late
1870's, he commanded the European Squadron, visiting ports in northern Europe
and patrolling theeastern Mediterranean during the Russo-Turkish War of
He returned ashore
and concluded his naval career as a member of the Examining Board and as
President of the Retiring Board. When he retired on 23 December 1886,
Congress voted him full sea pay in his grade for life. Rear Admiral Worden
resided in Washington, D.C., until his death from pneumonia on 19 October
1897. After funeral services at Washington's St. John's Episcopal Church, he
was buried at Pawling, NY.
Worden (DLG 18 / CG 18):
The fourth WORDEN
(DLG-18) was laid down on 19 September 1961 by Bath Iron Works Corp., Bath,
Maine; launched on 2 June 1962; sponsored by Mrs. William R. Smedberg III,
and commissioned at Boston on 3 August 1963, Capt. Scott Lothrop in command.
Following her commissioning, WORDEN spent a two month fitting-out period at
the Boston Naval Shipyard. The guided missile frigate departed Boston on 12
October, bound for Bermuda for shakedown training. She then proceeded to
Hampton Roads and sailed from Norfolk on 28 October for her home port, San Diego
Calif., arriving there on 13 November. Following a trip to Dabob Bay and
Seattle for sonar measurements, WORDEN became the flagship of her squadron.
In January 1964, WORDEN fired a series of missiles at the Pacific Missile
Range for systems qualifications tests. She continued operations in the San
Diego area until she entered the Long Beach Naval Shipyard in March for a
post-shakedown availability which was completed in early May.
From 18 May to 26 June, the ship participated in underway training at San
Diego. WORDEN's first fleet exercise took place from 10 to 17 July, a major
antiair warfare exercise. On 11 August 1964, the frigate sailed for the
western Pacific for a Far East deployment. After refueling at Midway and
Guam, the ship arrived in Subic Bay, Philippines on 30 August and became an
active participant in 7th Fleet activities. WORDEN visited Yokosuka, Japan,
in late October and early November, then continued operations in Southeast
Asia until the end of 1964.
On New Year's Day, 1965, WORDEN entered the port of Hong Kong for a period of
rest and recreation. After a brief visit to Yokosuka, Japan, the frigate set
course for the United States on 24 January. The ship arrived at her home port
on 17 February and remained in port through 5 March when the ship commenced a
three month restricted availability at the Long Beach Naval Shipyard.
On 2 June 1965, WORDEN returned to San Diego for evaluation of a newly
installed radar system. She continued to operate in her home port area and
participated in Fleet Exercise "Range Bush" off the coast of
southern California during the period 18 through 24 November 1965. She ended
the year making preparations for deployment to the western Pacific.
The frigate departed her home port on 7 January 1966 for Subic Bay,
Philippines, via Pearl Harbor and Guam. She arrived at the Philippines on 30
January and, the following day, set course for the Gulf of Tonkin and
operations with the 7th Fleet. On 4 February, WORDEN assumed
"Tomcat" duties west of Hainan Island. After an eight-day visit to
Sasebo, Japan, WORDEN departed on 1 March and returned to the Gulf of Tonkin
to assume plane-guard duties for aircraft carrier RANGER (CVA-61).
On 19 March, the frigate received a helicopter detachment on board, and, the
following day, a rescue helicopter from WORDEN pulled a downed Phantom pilot
from the water three miles from the beach, saving him from certain capture by
North Vietnamese junks converging on the area. Another such rescue was
effected on 23 May. WORDEN conducted operations in the Gulf of Tonkin until
17 June when she completed her commitment and proceeded to Yokosuka, Japan,
for a short upkeep period prior to the return trip to California.
The frigate arrived at San Diego, Calif., on 10 July. During the period 11
September to 21 October, the ship fired a series of missiles at the Pacific
Missile Range, Pt. Magu, Calif., as part of a missile test project. As of 31
December 1966, WORDEN was moored at the Naval Station, San Diego, preparing
for future operations involving the project.
January 1967 was spent providing services for continued missile tests, and
the frigate remained in port during February, training and preparing for an
upcoming deployment. On 13 March, WORDEN took part in the second
"Comtuex" of the year, then returned to San Diego.
WORDEN began a six-month deployment to the western Pacific on 8 April when
she sailed for Japan via Pearl Harbor. On 26 April, the frigate arrived at
Yokosuka, Japan. May began with WORDEN en route to Subic Bay via the Okinawa
missile range. On 14 May, the ship reached Danang, South Vietnam, and served
on a search and rescue station until mid-September with intermittent periods
of upkeep and liberty at Subic Bay, Hong Kong, Sasebo, and Yokosuka. During a
visit to Hong Kong on 13 August, a Greek freighter lost control and rammed
WORDEN on the starboard side inflicting minor damage. As the frigate departed
Hong Kong for Subic Bay, she sighted and rescued a dugout canoe with three
Philippine nationals who had been adrift for three days.
On 14 September 1967, WORDEN departed the search and rescue station the last
time for Yokosuka via Subic Bay. The ship departed Japan on 23 September for
Pearl Harbor, thence to San Diego, arriving on 6 October. WORDEN remained in
port until 16 November when she conducted local operations and type training.
With the exception of a dependent's cruise and an off-load of ammunition at
Seal Beach, WORDEN remained in port at San Diego for the month of December
and thus ended the year.
The early days of 1968 found WORDEN at San Diego, Calif., completing plans
and preparations for yard overhaul, her first since commissioning. On 9
January, the frigate sailed to the San Francisco Bay Naval Shipyard where she
entered drydock. The major shipyard jobs were completed toward the middle of
April. On 6 May, the ship began sea trials, and the overhaul was officially
completed on 13 May 1968.
Upon returning to San Diego two days later, WORDEN conducted various
exercises and evaluations in preparation for an upcoming western Pacific
deployment. On the 1st of July, the frigate commenced six weeks of refresher
training. The 16th day of August marked the end of refresher training and the
beginning of a period of logistics and material pre-deployment preparations.
The ship spent the month of September conducting missile firings and
antisubmarine warfare exercises. During the period 1 to 10 October, WORDEN
joined in Exercise "Beat Cadence," a simulation of the Tonkin Gulf
After a brief tender availability, WORDEN departed San Diego en route to
Subic Bay, Philippines, via Pearl Harbor, arriving on 22 November. Three days
later, the ship departed Subic Bay and became involved in a search and rescue
(SAR) incident when a helicopter with nine Navy men on board ditched in the
approach to the harbor. All of the men were rescued, and the helicopter was
towed by boat to a nearby beach.
WORDEN then steamed to Danang, South Vietnam, for SAR briefings and anti-PT
boat exercises before assuming duties as commander of the task unit at the
northern SAR station. The frigate shifted to the southern SAR station on 5
December and remained on station without incident until 29 December when
guided missile frigate COONTZ (DLG-9) relieved the ship. WORDEN then
proceeded to Kaohsiung, Taiwan, for an overnight logistics stop en route to
Sasebo, Japan, for repairs and a well-earned rest.
The New Year, 1969, found WORDEN en route to Sasebo, Japan. After stopping at
Keelung, Taiwan; and Subic Bay, Philippines; the ship returned to the northern
SAR station, Danang, South Vietnam, on 25 January 1969. She remained on
station through 18 February when she departed for Subic Bay, then to
Singapore and Hong Kong. The frigate returned to her station on 14 March for
a week of service before departing the last time for Subic Bay, arriving on
23 March. For the remainder of the month, she conducted task group
WORDEN returned to Subic Bay on 4 April, then began a cruise which took her
to Sydney, Australia (14 to 21 April); Wellington, New Zealand (25 to 27
April); and Pago Pago, American Samoa (1 May). The ship arrived at San Diego,
Calif., on 8 June and conducted a Secretary of the Navy guest cruise and a
materiel inspection through 30 June.
The frigate conducted local operations throughout July and August. On 22
September, she set sail for Acapulco, then transited the Panama Canal.
WORDEN's ultimate destination was Bath, Maine, where, on 10 November 1969,
she was decommissioned at Bath Iron Works Corp.
The lengthy yard period which followed was the product of a Navy-wide program
to enhance the antiair warfare capability of all guided missile frigates
which included the installation of the Navy Tactical Data System (NTDS) and
two Terrier missile directors.
WORDEN was recommissioned at the Bath Iron Works 18 months later on 16
January 1971. On 6 February, the ship departed for the transit to her new
home port of Long Beach, Calif. After a period of refresher training at
Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and liberty at Acapulco, WORDEN arrived at Long Beach
on 19 March 1971. During the next two months, the ship underwent an intensive
training period off the southern California coast in connection with the
On 7 July 1971, the frigate entered the Long Beach Naval Shipyard for an eight
week period of postshakedown availability. The ship began preparations for
her fourth overseas deployment beginning on 7 September following her
departure from the shipyard. In late August, WORDEN crew members learned the
ship was to be permanently assigned to the 7th Fleet with a home port change
to Yokosuka, Japan. This major policy decision alleviated the burden of long
WORDEN got underway on 20 October 1971 for her new home port. She stopped
briefly at Pearl Harbor before arriving at Yokosuka on 11 November. During
the last six weeks of the year, WORDEN conducted special operations in the
Sea of Japan and enjoyed a month-long holiday rest.
The frigate sailed from Yokosuka on the 3d of January 1972 for special
operations in the Sea of Japan. Returning to Yokosuka on 17 January, the ship
prepared for the first cruise in three years to the Gulf of Tonkin. These
preparations took her to Buckner Bay, Okinawa, and Subic Bay, Philippines.
On 6 February, WORDEN left the Philippines and proceeded west to assume
duties in the Gulf of Tonkin. The frigate operated on the northern SAR
station, then moved closer to the North Vietnamese coast off Thanh Hoa until
11 March when she proceeded back to her home port, Yokosuka, Japan. After a
month of operations off Japan and Okinawa in connection with amphibious
Exercise "Golden Dragon," WORDEN moved south to help counter a
North Vietnamese major offensive. She assumed duties as an escort for
aircraft carrier CORAL SEA (CVA-43).
The first major air strike on Haiphong since 1968 took place on the 16th of
April. During the strike, WORDEN was damaged by two anti-radiation missiles
inadvertently fired by United States support aircraft. One crew member was
killed, and nine others were seriously injured; they were airlifted by
helicopter to amphibious assault ship TRIPOLI (LPH-10) for treatment. WORDEN
proceeded to Subic Bay for a 10-day repair period. The frigate returned to
the Gulf of Tonkin until 11 May and operated as an escort for carrier KITTY
HAWK (CVA-63). She took a break from 8 to 11 May and assumed a search and
rescue station off Thanh Hoa during the first mine-laying strikes on North
On 16 May 1972, WORDEN began a restricted availability at Yokosuka, Japan,
followed by missile tests at Okinawa. On 20 June, she returned to duties at
the southern SAR station, operating off Cape Mui Ron for the next month.
After a brief visit to Yokosuka, WORDEN returned to the Gulf of Tonkin on 9
August and served as escort for carriers MIDWAY (CVA-41) and KITTY HAWK.
WORDEN moved to the middle search and rescue station off Vinh on the 1st of
October, then to the southern station shortly after. On 17 October, WORDEN
departed for Hachinohe, Japan, and Navy Day festivities. The ship went into
drydock at Yokosuka on the 25th of October for replacement of both
propellers. WORDEN again returned to the Gulf of Tonkin on 18 November where
she operated until 5 December. After a visit to Taiwan, the frigate finished
out the year at Yokosuka, Japan, in a much-needed standdown period.
Operations in the Gulf of Tonkin and in-port periods characterized WORDEN's
employments during 1973. Support of Task Force (TF) 77 and TF 78 was
interspersed with needed repair availabilities in Yokosuka Japan, and Subic
Bay, Philippines, and relaxing port visits to Hong Kong and Taiwan.
On 28 January 1973, the Vietnam cease fire was announced, and WORDEN joined
TF 78 at Subic Bay. During the sweeping of Haiphong harbor, she functioned as
Rear Admiral McCauley's flagship as well as the helicopter support platform,
the repair and logistic facility for the minesweeping units, and task force
antiair warfare and surface defense. For later operations, the frigate served
on antiair picket station and as the Positive Identification and Radar Advisory
Zone (PIRAZ) station. Besides the inherent responsibility for aircraft
control and identification and air surveillance, WORDEN functioned as search
and rescue asset coordinator and platform for the pre-positioned helicopter.
After the combat and post-hostility period had ended, WORDEN began stressing
new phases of operations: antisubmarine warfare and engineering readiness.
The last underway period of the year, 30 November to 3 December, was spent
conducting ship antisubmarine tactics with destroyer BAUSELL (DD-845) and
submarine DARTER (SS-576). WORDEN returned to Yokosuka to a Christmas holiday
upkeep period and a rest from the activities of the past year.
WORDEN's first exercise of the new year 1974 was "Aswex 3-74"
(Taeknando III) with the Republic of Korea Navy, conducted from 14 to 17
January. After a brief return to Yokosuka, she participated in joint Exercise
"Fly-A-Way" off Okinawa, returning to her home port on 8 February.
The ship remained in Yokosuka until 25 February in upkeep status, then sailed
for Subic Bay, Philippines, for surface missile exercises. The missile
exercises marked the first multi-ship missile exercise in the western Pacific
of the post-Vietnam era. WORDEN followed these exercises with a port visit to
Keelung, Taiwan, and tender availability at Sasebo, Japan. On 29 March, the
frigate departed Sasebo for operations with carrier MIDWAY in the Sea of
Japan. She also joined guided missile destroyer PARSONS (DDG-33) in a search
and rescue exercise simulating a North Korean surface unit. WORDEN returned
to Yokosuka on 7 April to begin a lengthy upkeep period in preparation for
her representation of the United States at the Shimoda Black Ship Festival on
15 May. On 10 May 1974, a major earthquake occurred on the Izu Peninsula causing
extensive damage to the Shimoda area. As a result, the Black Ship Festival
was canceled, and WORDEN continued upkeep with a brief underway period for
The ship got underway on 25 May and joined MIDWAY and the task group to
conduct air operations in the Yokosuka and northern Japan operations areas.
While underway, WORDEN joined the Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force in
joint Exercise "Aswex 5-74." On 4 June, WORDEN was detached from
MIDWAY and proceeded independently to the Okinawa missile range to conduct
missile firing tests followed by a port visit to Keelung, Taiwan. While in
port, eight first class NROTC midshipmen embarked in WORDEN to participate in
the six-week "Westpactramid 1-74."
On 27 June, WORDEN returned to Yokosuka to begin a short upkeep period to
prepare for the American-Japanese midshipmen exchange cruise. The frigate
sailed from Yokosuka on 17 July in company with MIDWAY and the task group for
air operations off northern Japan. After a brief stop in Yokosuka, WORDEN
departed on 22 July for Kure, Japan, to participate in the midshipmen
exchange cruise. The final phase of the cruise took place in port at Yokosuka
on 30 and 31 July and included spirits and social events. WORDEN remained in
Yokosuka until 2 August, when she sailed for task group operations along the
northern coast of Japan. On 15 August, she began a period in port at Yokosuka
and, in late August sailed for the eastern Pacific, nearer the United States
than she had been since deploying to the Pacific in October of 1971. During
this period, WORDEN remained in the company of KANIN, a KYNDA II-Class Soviet
WORDEN departed the area on 4 September for Hong Kong, thence to Yokosuka,
Japan. Upon arrival on 25 September, WORDEN underwent upkeep, then sailed to
Sasebo to embark Japanese officers for training. WORDEN made rendezvous with
MIDWAY and conducted an operational readiness inspection en route to
Yokosuka. Arriving in port on 11 October, the ship began an upkeep period and
was drydocked on the 25th. Three days of underway training late in November
signaled the approaching end of the upkeep period. Following a Thanksgiving
celebration, the ship got underway for Manila, Philippines, arriving there on
4 December. Four days later, she joined MIDWAY and steamed for northern
Japan, conducting Operation "Command Diamond," a major Air Force
and Navy exercise off Okinawa on 16 December. WORDEN arrived in Yokosuka on
19 December and entered a holiday period which closed the year 1974.
The frigate departed the naval ship repair facility at Yokosuka on 13 January
1975 en route to Subic Bay Philippines. During this two-week at-sea period,
she conducted antiaircraft and antisubmarine warfare operations with MIDWAY.
The ship arrived on 27 January for a week at Subic Bay and participated in
Operation "Readex" before returning to Yokosuka on 19 February.
Upon arrival, she commenced a 20-day availability period; and, on 11 March,
she got underway for 10 days of routine flight operations off Okinawa. She
then returned to Yokosuka where she commenced upkeep and preparation for an
upcoming cruise. On 25 March, WORDEN got underway for Pusan, Korea, for a
port visit, thence to Subic Bay for operations. After completing operations,
WORDEN headed for Thailand and a much awaited port visit.
The frigate, as part of the 7th Fleet, assisted in the evacuation of
Americans from Vietnam as part of Operation "Frequent Wind." As the
operation came to a close on 3 May, WORDEN returned to Thailand to resume her
port visit. However, the capture of the SS MAYAQUEZ by the Cambodians on 13
May interrupted her stay; and she sailed for Hong Kong. The MAYAQUEZ was
freed before WORDEN reached the British crown colony, so she proceeded to
Yokosuka, arriving there on 20 May.
After various inspections, WORDEN operated with MIDWAY for 11 days in
mid-June; followed by a dependents' cruise. By directive from the Secretary
of the Navy, dated 30 June 1975, WORDEN's designator was changed from a
guided missile frigate (DLG) to a guided missile cruiser (CG). Following an
at-sea period from 8 to 21 July with MIDWAY, WORDEN conducted a midshipmen
cruise with the Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force. August saw operations
in ocean areas between Japan and Okinawa with MIDWAY in preparation for
"Midlink-75," a CENTO exercise in the Indian Ocean. WORDEN and
MIDWAY arrived in Yokosuka on 22 August for a lengthy upkeep period.
On 4 October 1975, the cruiser got underway for "Midlink-75," the
first stop being Subic Bay, Philippines. En route, she participated in Exercise
"Cape Diamond." Departing Subic Bay on 14 October, she joined
Exercise "Merlion" with the Royal Singapore Navy and Air Force off
the coast of Malaysia. On 30 October, she arrived at Colombo, Sri Lanka. On 3
November, the cruiser got underway for Bandar Abbas, Iran, conducting naval
maneuvers and training exercises en route. On 11 and 12 November, elements of
the Pakistan Navy joined WORDEN and conducted training before she arrived at
Bandar Abbas. After a week in Iran, attending conferences and meetings to
plan the at-sea operations, the cruiser departed on 19 November to Exercise
"Midlink-75." Ten days later, WORDEN departed for her home port of
Yokosuka, Japan, via Subic Bay, Philippines. During her brief stay at Subic
Bay, the cruiser enjoyed the honor of a visit by the Honorable J. William
Middendorf II, Secretary of the Navy. The ship entered Yokosuka harbor on 19
December and celebrated the holiday season at her home port.
WORDEN entered the bicentennial year moored at the Yokosuka Naval Base, Yokosuka,
Japan. On 3 January 1976, the cruiser sailed from Yokosuka, making port
visits to Hong Kong; Okinawa; Pusan, Korea; and Sasebo, Japan; with exercises
and task group operations held en route. The ship returned to her home port
on 2 February and began a pre-overhaul restricted availability. WORDEN went
into drydock from 20 February until 22 June, and the regular overhaul came to
a close on 6 December. On 13 December, WORDEN went to sea for five days of
independent steaming exercises; then the cruiser returned to Yokosuka on 17
December and spent the holiday season in port.
During the first six months of 1977, WORDEN conducted comprehensive post
overhaul training and inspections in the areas of Yokosuka, Japan; and Subic
Bay, Philippines. Operations commenced on 18 June at Subic Bay with
"Multiplex" exercises. After a port visit to Singapore, WORDEN
arrived at Yokosuka on 14 July and remained in port through 23 July when she
set sail for Subic Bay. The cruiser conducted underway replenishment drills
and "Missilex" exercises before arriving in Hong Kong on the
morning of 13 August.
On 2 September, WORDEN returned to her home port of Yokosuka and began
preparing for an upcoming deployment. This deployment commenced on 27
September when WORDEN sailed for Subic Bay, thence to Victoria Quay,
Fremantle, Australia, for a month-long visit. The ship then visited Bandar
Abbas, Iran, from 9 to 21 November and Singapore from 5 to 11 December.
WORDEN arrived at Yokosuka, Japan on 21 December and enjoyed a period of leave
and liberty for the holiday season.
From 14 to 21 January 1978, WORDEN cruised to Chinhae, South Korea. After
briefly returning to Yokosuka on 25 January, the cruiser left again for
operations with MIDWAY and the task group. On 13 February, WORDEN and MIDWAY
rendezvoused with TF 77 and conducted "Readex 78," maneuvering to
avoid detection by "enemy" ships and land based aircraft from
Okinawa while positioning for a simulated assault on the island of Okinawa.
On 19 February, WORDEN got underway for Yokosuka, via Chinhae, South Korea.
She arrived there on 27 February and began an in-port period.
WORDEN's in-port period was marked by several inspections, an open house,
plus visits from staff members of the 7th Fleet and officers of the Japanese
Maritime Self Defense force. On 23 March, the ship departed for Chinhae and
conducted antisubmarine warfare training en route. Once anchored, she
completed the final phase of a Navy technical proficiency inspection. She
returned to her home port on 28 March and conducted operations with MIDWAY
from 11 to 23 April. Preparations for a material inspection continued
throughout April and May. WORDEN spent May in an upkeep period in Yokosuka
with support from the destroyer tender PRAIRIE (AD-15) and the Yokosuka
On 30 May, the cruiser departed for Keelung, Taiwan, her first liberty port
in 1978. WORDEN returned to Yokosuka on 9 June for a brief four-day visit
before joining carrier task group activities in the northern Philippine Sea.
She returned to Yokosuka, Japan, on 28 June for an in-port period which ended
on 19 July with a three-week transit to Subic Bay with the MIDWAY task group.
Having detached from task group operations and traveled to Buckner Bay,
Okinawa, WORDEN commenced "Missilex 4-78" on the morning of 1
August. Due to three successive unsuccessful launch attempts by the Japanese
antiaircraft training ship AZUMA, the exercise was canceled, and WORDEN
headed back to Subic Bay, Philippines, and a week of upkeep.
After successfully completing a missile shoot on 12 August, the cruiser
returned to Yokosuka briefly before taking part in task group operations on
22 August. On 1 September, she paid Chinhae, Korea, a port visit, then
returned to her home port one week later. From 19 September to 2 October,
WORDEN operated with MIDWAY, after which time she conducted a two-day,
combined antisubmarine warfare exercise with elements of the Republic of
Korea Navy. The cruiser continued operations with MIDWAY, then returned to
Yokosuka for an in-port period.
On 6 November 1978, WORDEN got underway from Yokosuka for underway tests and
evaluations. She took part in "Maulex 1-79," an amphibious exercise
involving units of the United States and Republic of Korea Navies, then
celebrated Thanksgiving at Hong Kong. On 3 December, the ship entered Subic
Bay, Philippines for various tests and then made rendezvous with MIDWAY and
returned to Yokosuka, Japan, on 22 December for the duration of the holiday
WORDEN spent the year 1979 operating out of Yokosuka, Japan, and was still
homeported there as of early 1980.
WORDEN was decommissioned and stricken 1 October 1993, she was laid up at
Pearl Harbor HI until sunk as a target, 17 June 2000.
According to an article in Stars & Stripes, a Maverick missile was the fatal
shot, fired by a fighter from the USS Abraham Lincoln's air wing. The ship
sank 90 minutes later. While the plane's air-to-surface missile was the final
blow, it certainly wasn't the first. The old guided missile cruiser was first
hit by the Australian HMAS Adelaide's arsenal. Then, the attack submarine USS
Tucson hit the ship with a torpedo. But the missile damage was fatal. There
was no need to place charges on the ship.