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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive


Contributed by Mike Smolinski

Contributed by Al Grazevich

USS Skywatcher (AGR-3)
ex
USS Skywatcher (YAGR-3) (1955 - 1958)


JANAP Tactical Voice Radio Call Sign - Slave Driver (J)uliet - Section 6A of JANAP 119(F) 1968
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Navy Expeditionary Service Medal (4-Cuba) - National Defense Service Medal

Guardian Class Radar Picket Ship:
  • Laid down as SS Rapheal R. Rivera, 30 November 1944, a Maritime Commission type (Z-EC2-S-C5) hull, under Maritime Commission contract (MCE hull 2337), at J. A. Jones Construction Co. Inc., Panama City, FL.
  • Launched, 16 January 1945
  • Delivered, 30 January 1945 to the Maritime Commission to be operated by States Marine Lines under a War Shipping Administration (WSA) contract
  • Returned to the Maritime Commission, 26 October 1947, for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet
  • Acquired by the US Navy, 20 September 1954, for conversion to a Radar Picket Ship at Charleston Naval Shipyard, Charleston, S.C.
  • Commissioned, USS Skywatcher (YAGR-3), 29 March 1955, at Norfolk Naval Shipyard, Portsmouth, VA., LCDR. John Ante in command
  • Redesignated (AGR-3), 28 September 1958
  • Decommissioned, 29 March 1965
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 1 April 1965
  • Transferred to the Maritime Commission for lay up in the National Defense Reserve Fleet
  • Final Disposition, sold for scrapping, 23 December 1970, to Dawood Cord., Ltd., of Karachi, Pakistan, resold to German buyers and again resold. In December 1971 arrived at Santander, Germany for scrapping
    Specifications:
    Displacement 7,360 t.(fl)
    Length 441'
    Beam 57'
    Draft 27'
    Speed 11 kts.
    Complement
    13 officers
    138 enlisted
    Armament two 3"/50 guns
    Capacities
    Fuel Oil, 443,646 gals.
    Diesel, 68,267 gals.
    Fresh Water, 15,082 gals.
    Ballast, 1,326,657 gals fresh water
    Propulsion
    two 220 PSI boilers
    one 3 cylinder triple-expansion reciprocating engine,
    one 4 blade, 18' 6" propeller, 2,500shp
    two Ship's Serice Generators

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed By
    USS Skywatcher (YAGR-3)
    Skywatcher 50k USS Skywatcher (YAGR-3) underway, date and location unknown.
    US Navy photo from "All Hands" magazine, August 1957
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret.
    USS Skywatcher (AGR-3)
    Thor 264k Aerial view of Boston Navy Yard, looking Southwest, 1 April 1960. Photo taken by a helicopter from Naval Air Station South Weymouth. Ships and Craft present:
    LocationShip (Hull No.)Ship Type
    Pier 11USS Wasp (CVS-18)Aircraft Carrier
    Dry Dock 5ARD-16Floating Dry Dock
    In ARD-16YFND-23Dry Dock Companion Craft
    Pier 10Empty 
    Pier 9EUSS Macon (CA-132)
    YD-196
    Heavy Cruiser
    Floating Crane
    Pier 9WUSS Hugh Purvis (DD-709)Destroyer
    Pier 8EUSS Thor (ARC-4)
    YPD-24
    Cable Layer
    Floating Pile Driver
    Pier 7EUSS Springfield (CLG-7)Guided Missile Light Cruiser
    Pier 7WEmpty 
    Pier 6EUSS Perry (DD-844)Destroyer
    Pier 6WUSS Mitscher (DL-2)Destroyer Leader
    Pier 5EUSS Albany (CG-10)Guided Missile Heavy Cruiser
    Pier 5WUSS Yosemite (AD-19)Destroyer Tender
    Pier 4EEmpty 
    Pier 4WUSS Skywatcher (AGR-3)Radar Picket Ship
    U.S. Navy photo, Boston NHP Collection, NPS Cat. No. BOSTS-10111)
    Stephen P. Carlson, Preservation Specialist, Boston NHP, Charlestown Navy Yard, Boston, MA 02129
    Skywatcher 70k USS Skywatcher (AGR-3) underway, date and location unknown. Bob Rowe RD3 Skywatcher 1955 to 1959.
    Skywatcher 260k USS Skywatcher (AGR-3) on station in the North Atlantic, circa May 1962. Photo by Dave Sutherland ET2 Skywatcher 1961 to 1963.

    USS Skywatcher (YAGR-3 / AGR-3)
    DANFS history entry located at the US Naval History and Heritage Command
    Commanding Officers
    01LCDR. Ante, John29 March 1955 - ?YAGR-3
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler and Ron Reeves

    Crew Contact And Reunion Information
    U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation - Navy Log

    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    MARAD Vessel History Data Base
    YAGR's (Radar Picket Ships) Association
    Online Air Defense Radar Museum
    Back To The Main Photo Index Back To the Service Ship Type Index Back To The Radar Picket Ship (AGR) Photo Index
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
    All pages copyright NavSource Naval History
    Last Updated 6 June 2014