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NavSource Online: Service Ship Photo Archive

Contributed by Mike Smolinski

Tabs contributed by Al Grazevich

Los Alamos (AFDB-7)
AFDB-7 (1946 - 1961)
USS ABSD-7 (1945 - 1946)

International Radio Call Sign:
November - Whiskey - Bravo - Echo
Awards, Citations and Campaign Ribbons

Precedence of awards is from top to bottom, left to right
Top Row - Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation (3) - Navy Battle "E" Ribbon (5)
Bottom Row - American Campaign Medal - World War II Victory Medal - National Defense Service Medal

ABSD-4 Class Advance Base Section Dock:
  • Constructed of seven Advance Base Docks, (ABD-37, ABD-38, ABD-39, and ABD-40 built at Chicago Bridge & Iron Co., Morgan City, LA.
  • Completed in December 1944 and January and February 1945
  • ABD-51 and ABD-52 built at Pollock Stockton Shipbuilding Co., Stockton, CA., completed in January and March 1945
  • ABD-58 built at Pittsburgh Des Moines Steel Co., Pittsburgh, PA., completed October 1944
  • Erected and assembled into (ABSD-7) at Mare Island Navy Yard, Vallejo, CA., completed in March 1945
  • Commissioned, USS ABSD-7, at Mare Island Navy Yard, 6 January 1945, CAPT. Ernest F. Robinson, USNR, in command
  • Inactivated, 9 April 1946
  • Reclassified Auxiliary Floating Drydock (AFDB-7) in August 1946
  • Disassembled and towed to Green Cove Springs FL. for lay up in the Atlantic Reserve Fleet in January 1947
  • Sections "A", "B", "C", and "D" of (AFDB-7) towed to Holy Loch, Scotland, in 1961
  • Placed in service as Los Alamos (AFDB-7), 10 November 1961
  • De-actived, 1 February 1992, at Holy Loch, Scotland
  • Disassembled and its sections returned to the United States
  • Struck from the Naval Register, 28 December 1993
  • In 1996 six of the original ABSD-7 sections transferred to the Brownsville Navigation District, TX. Another had been turned over to the U.S. Army in 1968
  • Current Disposition, renamed Solomon Ortiz Dry Dock in operation at Keppel AmFELS Shipyard, Brownsville, TX., servicing ships and oil rigs.
    ABSD Specifications (7 sections):
    Displacement 30,800 t.(lt.)
    Length 825'
    Beam 246' 5"
    Draft 8' 8" (lt), 67' 4" (subm. max.)
    Complement 187
    Armament fourteen 40mm guns, fourteen 20mm guns

    FBM Dry Dock Specifications (4 sections):
    Displacement 18,700 t.(It.)
    Length 513'
    Beam 246' 5"
    Draft 9' 3" (It.), 67' 4" (subm. max.)
    Complement 143
    Armament none

    Click On Image
    For Full Size Image
    Size Image Description Contributed
    AFDB-7 69k AFDB-7 moored in the Atlantic Fleet Reserve, Green Cove Springs, Fl., Group, circa 1947. Note the seven pontoons with walls lowered. Jerry Gauthier, USN 1966-71
    AFDB-7 75k Los Alamos (AFDB-7) at Holy Loch, Scotland, 19 March 1963, with USS Abraham Lincoln (SSBN-602) in the dock.
    US Navy photo from DANFS
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret
    AFDB-7 133k Los Alamos (AFDB-7) at Holy Loch, Scotland in February 1963. Jim Collins Coxswain 3rd Division Boats
    AFDB-7 309k Los Alamos (AFDB-7) in the Holy Loch, Scotland, 1972. Photo by Robert "Cliff" Wolff, ETC USN Ret.
    Simon Lake 63k USS Simon Lake (AS-33) moored at Holy Loch, Scotland, circa 1966-70 with supporting yard craft:
    Los Alamos (AFDB-7)
    Large Covered Lighter (NSP) YFNB-31
    Large Covered Lighter (NSP) YFNB-42 and
    Floating Crane (NSP) YD-245
    Carl Mussleman
    AFDB-7 65k Evening in the Holy Loch, Scotland showing Los Alamos (AFDB-7) with submarines alongside. This was a rare site as the submarine tender very seldom left the Holy Loch. Carl Mussleman
    AFDB-7 103k Los Alamos (AFDB-7) at Holy Loch, Scotland with a ballistic missile submarine (SSBN) inside, circa 1980s. USS Simon Lake (AS-33) is in the left distance.
    US Navy photo # NH 98381-KN from the collections of the US Naval Historical Center.
    US Naval Historical Center
    AFDB-7 133k Los Alamos (AFDB-7) at Holy Loch, Scotland with a ballistic missile submarine (SSBN) inside, December 1985.
    US Navy photo by PH1 Perry E. Thorsvik.
    Joe Radigan MACM USN Ret.
    Hunley 353k Los Alamos (AFDB-7) moored aft of submarine tender USS Hunley (AS-31) while servicing FBM Submarines in the Holy Loch at Dunoon, Scotland, December 1985.
    US Navy photos by PH1 Perry E. Thorsvik.
    Scot Koen
    AFDB-7 107k A section of floating drydock Los Alamos under tow by the fleet tug USS Salinan (ATF-161), 1976. In July-August 1976 Salinan and USS Shakori (ATF-162) towed a dry dock section from Charleston, S.C., to Holy Loch, Scotland. Salinan and USS Papago (ATF-160) towed other Los Alamos sections back to the U.S. from Holy Loch in October-November 1976.
    Photograph received from Salinan in 1978.
    US Navy photo # NH 98427 from the collections of the US Naval Historical Center.
    US Naval Historical Center

    Los Alamos (AFDB-7) Additional Ship's Patches
    Los Alamos
    Contributed by Mike Smolinski
    Los Alamos
    Contributed by R.A. Moody

    USS Los Alamos (AFDB-7)
    Dictionary of American Naval Fighting Ships (DANFS)
    Commanding Officers / Officers In Charge
    01CAPT. Robinson, Ermest Francis, USNR6 January 1945 - 21 December 1945USS ABSD-7
    02LCDR. Strickland, John Ogle, USN21 December 1945 - 9 April 1946USS ABSD-7
     Decommissioned9 April 1946 
    03LT. Briscoe, Carlton Francis, USN (OinC)9 April 1946 - 15 June 1946AFDB-7
    04LT. Bilderack, Arthur Haskell, USN (OinC)15 June 1946 - 1 July 1946AFDB-7
    05LT. Briscoe, Carlton Francis, USN (OinC)1 July 1946 - 21 January 1947AFDB-7
    06CHBOSN. English, Oscar Lee, USN (OinC)21 January 1947 - 1 December 1947AFDB-7
     Inactivated1 December 1947 - 10 November 1961 
    07LCDR. Melcher, Roland O. (OinC)10 November 1961 - ?Alamo (AFDB-7)
    08LT. French, Stanley Lee, USN (OinC)1968 - 1970Alamo (AFDB-7)
    09LT. Finoti, Donald. USN (OinC)1970 - July 1971Alamo (AFDB-7)
    10LCDR. Akerson Jr. Arthur Carl, USN (OinC)July 1971 - July 1973Alamo (AFDB-7)
    11LCDR. Harper Jr., Don Spence, USN (OinC)18 April 1975 - 1976Alamo (AFDB-7)
    12LCDR. Farris, Wayne Ross (OinC)1976 - 8 July 1977Alamo (AFDB-7)
    13LCDR. Wells, Bruce, USN (USNA 1964) (OinC)8 July 1977 - 26 October 1979Alamo (AFDB-7)
    14LCDR. Dawson Jr., Wilbert Elwood, USN (OinC)26 October 1979 - ?Alamo (AFDB-7)
    15LCDR. Eyerly, Louis Gardiner, USN (OinC)1984 - ?Alamo (AFDB-7)
    16LCDR. Weaver, David Dale (OinC)1988 - ?Alamo (AFDB-7)
    17LCDR. Nance, Roger Allan, USN (OinC)1989 - ?Alamo (AFDB-7)
    16LCDR. Heery, Joseph William (OinC)1 June 1991 - 1 February 1992Alamo (AFDB-7)
    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
    AFDB-7 Los Alamos Holy Loch Scotland “IN THE BEGINNING…”
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    This page is created and maintained by Gary P. Priolo
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    Last Updated 7 September 2018