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Photographic History of the United States Navy


Flag Hoist/Radio Call Sign - NOTC

Tactical Voice Radio Call Sign - RED DEVIL

Displacement 7800 Tons (Full), Dimensions, 563' (oa) x 55' x 20' 6" (Max)
Armament 2 x 5"/54 RF (2x1), 1 Sea Sparrow SAM (1x8) ASROC ASW (1x8),
6 x 12.75" Mk 32 ASW TT (2x3). 1 Helicopter.
Machinery, 80,000 SHP; 4 LM 2500 Gas Turbines, 2 screws
Speed, 30 Knots, Range 6000 NM@ 20 Knots, Crew 296.
Operational and Building Data
Laid down by Litton Ingalls, Pascagoula Miss. July 1 1974.
Launched June 23 1975 and commissioned October 1 1977.
Decommissioned October 10 2001 at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, VA
Stricken on June 5 2002.
Fate Sunk during explosive tests December 4 2002.

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Caron 33kPetty Officer Wayne M. Caron, United States Navy, for conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty while serving as platoon corpsman with Company K, during combat operations against enemy forces. While on a sweep through an open rice field Petty Officer Caron's unit started receiving enemy small-arms fire. Upon seeing 2 Marine casualties fall, he immediately ran forward to render first aid, but found that they were dead. At this time, the platoon was taken under intense small-arms and automatic-weapons fire, sustaining additional casualties. As he moved to the aid of his wounded comrades, Petty Officer Caron was hit in the arm by enemy fire. Although knocked to the ground, he regained his feet and continued to the injured Marines. He rendered medical assistance to the first Marine he reached, who was grievously wounded, and undoubtedly was instrumental in saving the man's life. Petty Officer Caron then ran toward the second wounded Marine, but was again hit by enemy f ire, this time in the leg. Nonetheless, he crawled the remaining distance and provided medical aid for this severely wounded, man. Petty Officer Caron started to make his way to yet another injured comrade, when he was again struck by enemy small-arms fire. Courageously and with unbelievable determination, Petty Officer Caron continued his attempt to reach the third Marine until he was killed by an enemy rocket round. By his inspiring valor, steadfast determination, and selfless dedication to duty, Petty Officer Caron reflected great credit upon himself and upheld the highest traditions of the United States Naval Service. /s/ Richard M. Nixon, President of the United States Bill Gonyo
Caron 15kUndated, location unknown.-
Caron 23kUndated, © Atlantic Fleet Sales. Photo by Nobe Smith.Joe Radigan
Caron 62kUndated postcard Copyright © Atlantic Fleet Sales, Norfolk, VA.Mike Smolinski
Caron 129kUndated, location unknown.Joe Gardella
Caron 85kUndated, location unknown.Joe Gardella
Caron 88kUndated, location unknown.Joe Gardella
Caron 125kUndated view of the USS Peterson (DD-969), USS Caron (DD-970) and USS David R. Ray (DD-971) under construction at Pascagoula, MS from the NAVSEA Journal.Bob Bush
Caron 63kUndated, location unknown.Robert Hurst
Caron 66kUndated, location unknown. Photo from Jane's Battleships of the 20th Century, by Bernard Ireland.Robert Hurst
Caron 184kUSS Caron (DD-970) tied up pierside at Norfolk, VA., 1978. Photo courtesy of Karsten Petersen.Robert Hurst
Caron 42kAtlantic Ocean, 12 December 1979, aerial view of the USS Independence (CV-62) battle group as it heads home from deployment in the Mediterranean Sea. The ships are, clockwise from top, USS Farragut (DDG-37), USS McCandless (FF-1084), USS Independence (CV-62), USS Detroit (AOE-4), USS Garcia (FF-1040), USS Mahan (DDG-42), USS Caron (DD-970) and USS Peterson (DD-969). US Navy photo by PHC C. Pedrick (DVIC id: DNSC8200297).Defense Visual Information Center
Caron 46kNew Orleans, LA April 1980.Marc Piché
Caron 66kNorfolk (NOB) June 30 1980.Marc Piché
Caron 33kIn the Mediterranean June 1981.Marc Piché
Caron 268kDN-SC-85-07100. January 1 1985, artwork: "USS Caron Neutralizes Radio Free Grenada - Beausejour Bay". Artist: Unknown. U.S. Navy Combat Art Center, Washington Navy Yard. U.S. Navy photo by the Navy Audiovisual Center.Robert M. Cieri
Caron 98kMarch 8 1985, location Unknown. A starboard bow view of the Spruance class destroyer USS Caron (DD 970 ) underway.Fred Weiss
Caron 137kIn the floating drydock USS Sustain AFDM-7, August 1985 Norfolk, VA.Rick Rowan
Caron 149kJanuary 1 1988 at Genoa, Italy.Carlo Martinelli
Caron 130kJanuary 1 1988 at Genoa, Italy.Carlo Martinelli
Caron 65k12 Feb 1988 Naval action near Foros Crimea.-
Caron 68kFebruary 12 1988, Black Sea, a Soviet Mirka II class light frigate (FFL 824) approaches the destroyer USS Caron (DD 970 ) as it prepares to strike the American vessel. The Caron is exercising the right of free passage through the Soviet-claimed 12-mile territorial waters.Fred Weiss
Caron 60kAs above.Fred Weiss
Caron 37kAs above.Fred Weiss
Caron 53kThis and the next photo were taken in early 1990 off the coast of VA. We had just left Avondale Shipyard after the VLS installation. This was the ship's configuration for Desert Storm.Joe Gardella, LCDR, USNR
Caron 67kAs above.Joe Gardella, LCDR, USNR
Caron 67kNATO Sea Sparrow shot during CSSQT (Combat Systems Ship Qualification Test) in Puerto Rican Operating Area in March 1990. Telemetry bird scored a hit.Joe Gardella, LCDR, USNR
Caron 55kPortsmouth, England April 18 1995.Marc Piché
Caron 90kBarcelona, Spain April 30 1998.Marc Piché
Caron 64kBarcelona, Spain April 30 1998.Marc Piché
Caron 96kBarcelona, Spain May 4 1998.Marc Piché
Caron 65kUSS Caron DD 970 entering Gibraltar on 1st June 1998.© Daniel Ferro
Caron 68kUSS Caron DD 970 entering Gibraltar on 1st June 1998.© Daniel Ferro
Caron 34kNorfolk (NOB) July 24 1998.Marc Piché
Caron 31kNorfolk June 7 1999.Jack Treutle
Caron 68kNaval Station Norfolk, Va., October 13 1999, a Boatswain's Mate discusses the use of a needlegun Secretary Danzig during a demonstration onboard USS Caron (DD 970) in Norfolk, Va. The tools displayed on the table are examples of new equipment being incorporated into shipboard workcenters as part of the Smart Work program initiated by the Secretary.Bill Gonyo
Caron 217kIn La Spezia, Italy on September 13, 2000.Carlo Martinelli
Caron 165kLeaving La Spezia, Italy on September 18, 2000.Carlo Martinelli
Caron 61kThe final moments of the USS CARON. She was sunk December 4th, 2002, 75nm S. of Roosevelt Roads, Puerto Rico during explosive test. She was intended to survive these tests and scheduled to be sunk as a target later in 2003, but secondary explosions caused her to sink.Joe Gardella, LCDR, USNR
Caron 54kAs above.Joe Gardella, LCDR, USNR
Caron 50kAs above.Joe Gardella, LCDR, USNR
Caron 67kAs above.Joe Gardella, LCDR, USNR
Caron 68kShip's patchMike Smolinski
Caron 86kShip's Zippo circa 1976.John A. Altfeltis

USS CARON DD-970 History
Note: History is unavailable at this time
This ship was built too late to be covered by the DANFS project

Commanding Officers
Thanks to Wolfgang Hechler & Ron Reeves

CDR Earle Godfrey Schweizer Jr.    Oct 1 1977 - Jul 26 1979

CDR David Peter Yonkers    Jul 26 1979 - Jun 23 1981

CDR David Gordon Kaiser    Jun 23 1981 - Aug 24 1983

CDR James Stanley Polk    Aug 24 1983 - Dec 3 1985

CDR Louis Francis Harlow Jr.    Dec 3 1985 - Apr 16 1988

CDR John Zigmund Stepien    Apr 16 1988 - Oct 18 1990

CDR Brent Baker Gooding    Oct 18 1990 - Jul 17 1992

CDR Peter Dante Squicciarini    Jul 17 1992 - Apr 15 1994

CDR Steven William Nerheim    Apr 15 1994 - Jan 31 1996

CDR James Robert Miller    Jan 31 1996 - Aug 22 1997

CDR Joseph Carl Peterson Jr.    Aug 22 1997 - Apr 9 1999

CDR William James Harden    Apr 9 1999 - Oct 21 2000

CDR William Morales    Oct 21 2000 - Oct 10 2001

Additional Resources and Web Sites of Interest
Tin Can Sailors Website
Destroyer History Foundation
Destroyers Online Website
Official U.S.Navy Destroyer Website

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