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NavSource Online: Mine Warfare Vessel Photo Archive

Left patch contributed by Mike Smolinski, right patch by Tom Rux, YNC(SW)

Enhance (MSO 437)

Call sign:
November - Bravo - November - Mike

Aggressive Class Minesweeper:

  • Laid down 12 July 1952 as AM-437 at Martinolich Shipbuilding Co., San Diego, CA
  • Launched 11 October 1952
  • Reclassified as an Ocean Minesweeper, MSO-437, 7 February 1955
  • Commissioned USS Enhance (MSO-437), 16 April 1955
  • Decommissioned 31 December 1991
  • Struck from the Navy Register 21 February 1992
  • Scrapped 6 March 2000 by Crowley Marine Services, Long Beach, CA.


  • Displacement 775 t.
  • Length 172'
  • Beam 35'
  • Draft 12'
  • Speed 14 kts.
  • Complement 78
  • Armament: As built, one 40mm gun mount and two .50 cal machine guns. Final configuration, bow gun replaced by one twin 20mm mount, two .50 cal. machine guns remain
  • Propulsion: Four Packard ID1700 diesel engines, replaced by four Waukasha Motors Co. diesel engines, two shafts, two controllable pitch propellers.
    Click on thumbnail
    for full size image
    Size Image Description Source
    USS Enhance (MSO 437)
    Enhance 108k Tom Rux, YNC(SW)
    Enhance 81k Photo from welcome aboard pamphlet Tom Lawson
    Enhance 77k . David Buell
    Enhance 298k Sasebo, Japan
    In dry dock with Guide (MSO 447) astern
    Barbara Ritola
    Enhance 298k Richard Miller, BMCS, USNR, Ret.
    Enhance 108k Entering port at Tagbilaren, Philippine Islands, Enhance is the first U.S. ship to visit there in 14 years
    U.S. Navy photo from the January 1962 edition of All Hands magazine
    Joe Radigan
    Enhance 165k c. mid-1960s
    U.S. Navy photo
    Robert M. Cieri
    Enhance 137k 1 April 1969
    Pearl Harbor, HI
    Returning from Market Time patrol in Vietnam
    J. Haskell
    Enhance 351k c. July 1969
    Naval Station Treasure Island, San Francisco, CA
    CAPT Richard Gibson, USN, (Retired)
    Enhance 83k c. 1973.
    Enhance on fire. Photo taken from USS Pluck (MSO 464)
    Mike Prager
    Enhance 551k 6 May 1977
    San Diego Bay, CA
    A port beam view of the ocean minesweeper Enhance underway off the coast of Coronado, California
    U.S. Navy photo DN-SC-86-00168 by PHAN Bruce T. Trombecky
    Robert M. Cieri
    Enhance 139k 24 February 1984 Tommy Trampp
    Enhance 98k 29 October 1987
    Arabian Gulf

    The long awaited U.S. Navy Minesweepers US-[MSO] 438 the Esteem, followed by US- [MSO] 437 Enhance, lead the Frigate Carr [FFG 52], top right, and the Support ship Barbour County [LST 1195], up the Arabian Gulf off Dubai today Thursday, bringing the number of U.S. warships in the area to Forty
    Associated Press wirephoto pk42030 by Peter Kemp

    Enhance 267k 1 November 1987
    Persian Gulf
    A starboard quarter view of the ocean minesweeper Enhance underway
    U.S. Navy photo DN-ST-88-02752 by PH1 Chuck Mussi
    Original photo: Robert M. Cieri
    Replacement photo: Robert Hurst
    Enhance 37k c. November 1987
    Photo taken from the deck of USS LaSalle (AGF-3). Enhance was about to come alongside to enjoy some "liberty" on board LaSalle (note the India flag closed up on the port halyard) in the Persian Gulf in support of Operation Earnest Will. The crew was allowed to go aboard LaSalle to use the ship's store, get haircuts, eat on the mess decks, swap sea stories and drink soda. It was a real treat after having been underway in the minefields for quite some time. [QMCM(SW) Mike Harrison, USN]
    102 Minesweepers (MSO) Oceangoing Minesweepers website
    Enhance 233k In the Persian Gulf alongside Inflict (MSO 456) and Mount Vernon (LSD 39)
    U.S. Navy photo by PH1 Chuck Mussi from the January 1988 edition of All Hands magazine
    Joe Radigan
    Enhance 152k Persian Gulf
    U.S. Navy photo by PH1 Chuck Mussi from the March 1988 edition of All Hands magazine
    Esteem 102k c. fall 1989.
    Esteem (MSO 438), Conquest (MSO 488) and Enhance (astern of Esteem) inport at Basrac Shipyard, Bahrain towards the end of Operation Earnest Will
    Tom Womble, LCDR, USNR
    Enhance 52k c. Winter 1989
    Enhance and Conquest (MSO 488) at Basrac Shipyard, Bahrain
    MSO-437/438/488 78k c. November 1989
    Esteem (MSO 438), Enhance and Conquest (MSO 488) in the Arabian Gulf
    Enhance 98k c. 1990/1991
    Persian Gulf during the first Gulf War
    Tommy Trampp
    MSO-437/438/488 75k c. April 1990.
    Esteem, Enhance and Conquest return to Seattle aboard the Super Servant 3 from the Arabian gulf. This apparently was the first multiship lift for the Navy
    Tom Womble, LCDR, USNR
    MSO-437/438/488 63k c. April 1990
    Esteem, Enhance and Conquest return to Seattle aboard the Super Servant 3 from the Arabian gulf
    Enhance 147k c. April 1990
    Super Servant delivers the Navy minesweepers Esteem, Enhance (visible) and Conquest to their Puget Sound home port after two and one half years in the Persian Gulf
    U.S. Navy photo from the August 1990 edition of All Hands magazine
    Joe Radigan
    Enhance 107k 26 June 2000
    Being scrapped at Crowley Marine
    Photo courtesy of Friends of USS Enhance
    Tommy Trampp
    Enhance 67k

    Commanding Officers
    01LT Robert Phillip Green, USN16 April 1955 - June 1956
    02LCDR Durwaro D. Forbus, USNRJune 1956 - 26 May 1958
    03LT/LCDR Harold Floyd Wenzel, USN26 May 1958 - 14 March 1959
    04LCDR Joseph Benedict Brady, Jr., USN14 March 1959 - 25 April 1961
    05LCDR Carl Frederick Cronemiller, Jr., USN25 April 1961 - 25 January 1962
    06LCDR William Kinne Martin, USN - USNA Class of 195025 January 1962 - 10 July 1963
    07LCDR George Purnell Brown, USN10 July 1963 - 15 July 1965
    08LCDR Lawrence Keith Stiers, USN15 July 1965 - 1967
    09LCDR Paul Eugene Brownell, USN7 March 1968 - 20 September 1969
    10LCDR Richard Green Cowper, III, USN20 September 1969 - 30 October 1970
    11LCDR Terrence William Costello, III, USN1 December 1971 - 10 September 1973
    12LT Bo Gottfrid Lindfors, USN10 September 1973 - October 1975
    13LT Stephen Leslie Lieberman, USN - USNA Class of 1969October 1975 - August 1977
    14LCDR Roger Walter Byron, USNAugust 1977 - 18 August 1979
    15CDR Robert Aubrey Conder, USN18 August 1979 - March 1982
    16LCDR Erwin Carl Morris, Jr., USNMarch 1982 - 14 June 1985
    17LCDR Larry Charles Stoddard, USN14 June 1985 - 16 June 1987
    18CDR Steven William Nerheim, USN16 June 1987 - January 1988
    19CDR William Lester Snyder, USN - USNA Class of 1972January 1988 - September 1988
    20CDR Richard George Merten, USNSeptember 1988
    21CDR Jeffrey Kendall Sapp, USNJanuary 1989
    22CDR Paul Eugene Stanton, USNJanuary 1989 - September 1989
    23LCDR David Spencer Armstrong, USNSeptember 1989 - February 1990
    24CDR Daniel Allen Burns, USN - USNA Class of 1974February 1990 - February 1991
    25LCDR Phillip Tim Swanson, USNFebruary 1991 - 13 December 1991
    Courtesy Wolfgang Hechler, Ron Reeves and Peter M. Leenhouts

    View the Enhance (MSO-437)
    DANFS History entry located on the Haze Gray & Underway Website
    Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
    102 Minesweepers (MSO) Oceangoing Minesweepers

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