Destroyer USS Fife (DD-991)

Destroyer USS Fife (DD-991) 0Destroyer USS Fife (DD-991) 1Destroyer USS Fife (DD-991) 2Destroyer USS Fife (DD-991) 3Destroyer USS Fife (DD-991) 4



Basic information

Country of build:
Laid down:
Commissioned (service):
Decommissioned (out):
Sunk as target, 23 August 2005

Ship measurements

8,040 t
161 m
16.8 m
8.8 m


Propulsion system:
  • 4 * General Electric LM2500 gas turbines
  • 2 * shafts, 80,000 shp (60 MW)
32.5 knots
6,000 nautical miles (11,000 km; 6,900 mi) at 20 knots (37 km/h; 23 mph)



Combat assets

  • AN/SPS-40 air search radar
  • AN/SPG-60 fire control radar
  • AN/SPS-55 surface search radar
  • AN/SPQ-9 gun fire control radar
  • Mark 23 TAS automatic detection and tracking radar
  • AN/SPS-65 Missile fire control radar
  • AN/SQS-53 bow mounted Active sonar
  • AN/SQR-19 TACTAS towed array Passive sonar
  • Naval Tactical Data System
  • AN/SLQ-32 Electronic Warfare System
  • AN/SLQ-25 Nixie Torpedo Countermeasures
  • Mark 36 SRBOC Decoy Launching System
  • AN/SLQ-49 Inflatable Decoys
  • 2 * 5 in (127 mm) 54 calibre Mark 45 dual purpose guns
  • 2 * 20 mm Phalanx CIWS Mark 15 guns
  • 1 * 8 cell ASROC launcher (removed)
  • 1 * 8 cell NATO Sea Sparrow Mark 29 missile launcher
  • 2 * quadruple Harpoon missile canisters
  • 2 * Mark 32 triple 12.75 in (324 mm) torpedo tubes (Mk 46 torpedoes)
  • 1 * 61 cell Mk 41 VLS launcher for Tomahawk missiles
  • 1 * 21 cell RIM-116 Rolling Airframe Missile
  • 2 * Sikorsky SH-60 Seahawk LAMPS III helicopters

The USS Fife (DD-991), a destroyer of the Spruance-class, was a vessel in the United States Navy dedicated to Admiral James Fife, Jr. (1897–1975), an esteemed commander in the Submarine Force during World War II.

Construction of the Fife commenced on 6 March 1978 at Ingalls Shipbuilding, Pascagoula, Mississippi. It was launched on 1 May 1979 and officially commissioned on 31 May 1980.

Fife was the 29th destroyer among the 30 in the Spruance class. In a notable deployment between 27 June and 11 July 2002, Fife served as the flagship for the U.S. Task Group during the Pacific Phase of the annual UNITAS exercise, conducted with naval forces from five nations off the coast of Chile. This deployment to the Eastern Pacific Ocean, involving Counter-Drug Operations and the UNITAS exercise, marked the final mission for the destroyer.

Last stationed in Everett, Washington, under the command of CDR Frank Ponds, Fife was decommissioned on 28 February 2003 and removed from the Navy List on 6 April 2004. The ship was sunk as a target during a live-fire exercise on 23 August 2005 by the USS Russell (DDG-59).

Fife's construction began on 6 March 1978 at Ingalls Shipbuilding Division in Pascagoula, Mississippi. Launched on 21 July 1979 and sponsored by Mrs. Nancy Fife Prior, daughter of the ship's namesake Admiral James Fife Jr., the vessel was commissioned on 31 May 1980.

Crafted for modern anti-submarine warfare, the Spruance-class destroyer aimed to replace World War II-era ships, operating as a versatile warship either independently or with amphibious or carrier task groups. Powered by gas turbine engines and armed with anti-submarine rockets (ASROC), Harpoon and Sea Sparrow missiles, and two 5 in (130 mm)/54 guns, Fife boasted advanced SQS-53 sonar and a third-generation naval tactical data system (NTDS).

Fife underwent outfitting at Pascagoula, setting sail on 6 June 1980 en route to the west coast for assignment to the Pacific Fleet. Arriving in San Diego, California, on 18 June, the destroyer underwent shakedown system trials and crew training. Following these preparations, Fife's inaugural task came unexpectedly at the end of August when it steamed north to Alaska for two weeks of surveillance on a Soviet Task Force operating in American waters.

In January 1982, Fife set sail from Pearl Harbor via Guam to Subic Bay, Philippines, joining ASW exercises with the 7th Fleet in the South China Sea. This was followed by engagements in South Korea for Exercise «Team Spirit,» and war-at-sea maneuvers with three American aircraft carriers in «READIEX 82» in April. Returning to San Diego on 30 June after visits to Manila, Hong Kong, and Japan, Fife engaged in notable missions, including redirection to Central America in July 1983, among other operations.

Fife's second overseas deployment commenced with «READIEX 83-4,» traveling to the Persian Gulf with the USS Ranger battlegroup. While operating with the Ranger, the destroyer encountered the Soviet guided missile frigate Razyashchiy, resulting in a minor collision and subsequent events in Mombassa, Kenya, offering humanitarian aid during a cyclone.

Following multiple deployments and various missions, including involvement in Operation Desert Storm, Fife underwent numerous repairs, overhauls, and system upgrades, changing homeports and participating in exercises worldwide until its final deployment in 2002.

The ship's remarkable service and legacy were honored through its crest, symbolizing Admiral James Fife, Jr.'s distinguished career and Fife's commitment to anti-submarine warfare and naval excellence.

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