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DD 980 Moosbrugger

The USS Moosbrugger was decommissioned on December 15, 2000.

The official crest of the USS Moosbrugger symbolizes the dedication and courage displayed by her namesake, Admiral Moosbrugger, during World War II.

The trident, an attribute of Neptune, god of the seas, represents the awesome strength and dominance of the modern destroyer. It also resembles the letter "M," an allusion to the initial letter of MOOSBRUGGER, the ship's namesake.

Through the heraldic fountain for water, the grappling iron (a device used for close range, early naval encounters), and the torpedo, the crest commemorates the Vella Gulf incident in the South Pacific during World War II. The then Commander Moosbrugger led his ships into exceedingly close range against Japanese Naval Forces; took the enemy by surprise, and delivered a devastating torpedo attack, thereby annihilating the hostile force. For this action, he was awarded the Navy Cross. The gold laurel wreath is symbolic of Vice Admiral Frederick Moosbrugger's long and distinguished career.

The USS Moosbrugger's keel was laid on November 3, 1975. Launched on July 23, 1976 and commissioned on December 16, 1978, the USS Moosbrugger is the eighteenth in a series of 31 SPRUANCE Class destroyers.

The Destroyer USS Moosbrugger (DD 980) relocated to Mayport, FL, on March 11, 1995, from its previous home port of Charleston, SC. The Spruance-class ship was the sixth of 11 ships scheduled for relocation to Mayport as a result of the 1993 Base Realignment and Closure Commission decision.

The USS Moosbrugger deployed in 1996 to take partin UNITAS 96, a series of combined tactical at-sea operations, amphibious operations and in-port exercises with participating South American naval forces. During that deployment, the USS Moosbrugger spent almost two weeks in Venezuelan waters conducting anti-submarine warfare, electronic warfare and anti-air gunnery exercises in the Caribbean. It then departed for Brazil for the next phase of UNITAS.

The USS Moosbrugger took part in UNITAS 39-98, serving as the flagship. UNITAS, Latin for unity, consists of at-sea operations, amphibious operations, riverine operations and in port exercises conducted with nine South American navies over a four-month period. The U.S. task group circumnavigated South America in a clockwise direction, returning to Roosevelt Roads in November. The 40-year old operation promotes a cooperative maritime strategy in the region while supporting the U.S. policy of continued engagement in South America through forward presence. The navies of Canada, Great Britain, the Netherlands and South Africa joined the United States and South American navies for the first phase of UNITAS. This phase was led by the United States and conducted in the vicinity of Puerto Rico. The U.S. Navy's longest running annual deployment began at Naval Station Roosevelt Roads, Puerto Rico, as seven ships from four foreign navies joined a five-ship U.S. task group.

While in Puerto Rico, on April 20, 1998, the USS Moosbrugger took part in Independent Deployer Exercise (INDEX) 98-2, off the coast of Puerto Rico. During the exercise, Moosbrugger fired two Sea Sparrows from her deck at guided target drones launched from the Atlantic Fleet Weapons Training Facility at Naval Station Roosevelt Roads. The exercise also included target drones fired from A-4 aircraft. Following this, the task force then headed for Venezuela on July 18 as Venezuela, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Chile, Paraguay, Peru, Ecuador, and Colombia each directed, in turn, their own phase of UNITAS. Overall, U.S. forces worked with host navies from Venezuela, Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, Paraguay, Chile, Peru, Ecuador and Colombia. The specific exercises conducted in each phase are determined by the host navy, making each phase unique. Exercises included all areas of modern naval warfare including anti-air, amphibious, anti-surface and anti-submarine warfare.

Vice Admiral Frederick Moosbrugger

The late Frederick Moosbrugger was born in Philadelphia, PA, on 9 October 1900, son of Jacob and Rosina (Keier) Moosbrugger. He entered the U.S. Naval Academy, Annapolis, Maryland on 25 June 1919. Graduated and commissioned Ensign on 8 June 1923, he subsequently advanced through the various grades to the rank of Rear Admiral to date from 1 June 1951, having served in the temporary rank of Commodore from 6 April 1945 until 5 April 1946. He was transferred to the Retired List of the U.S. Navy on 1 October 1956, and was advanced to the rank of Vice Admiral.

Following graduation from the Naval Academy in June 1923, he had sea duty for four years, first in the USS Nevada, then in USS Truxton, operating in the valley of the Yangtze River, China in 1926-27. He returned to the United States to serve briefly at Headquarters, 13th Naval District in May 1927.

He served aboard the USS Brazos from August 1927 to June 1929, after which he reported for submarine instruction. Completing the course in December 1929, he joined Submarine Division 12 for duty until April 1931 in the USS S-6. Returning to Annapolis as an instructor, he remained there for three years, then joined USS Houston. He served aboard that cruiser from 1 June 1934 to 29 May 1937. He then reported for his second tour of duty at the U.S. Naval Academy, where he was an instructor in the Department of Ordnance and Gunnery.

Returning to duty afloat in June 1939, he joined the USS Tennessee as Gunnery Officer, and on 28 April 1941, assumed command of the USS McCall. He was in command at the time of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7 December 1941, and subsequently directed the activities of that destroyer in close cooperation with a carrier task group to cover the reinforcement of Samoa, to conduct raids on Wake and Marcus, and to perform escort and screening duties in hazardous waters.

From May 1942 until September 1943, he had successive command of Destroyer Divisions 11 and 12, carrying out patrol and escort missions to Guadalcanal and the Russel Islands, supporting operations at New Georgia, Rendova, and Vangunu, and patrolling the Solomon Islands.

Returning to the United States, he assumed command on 5 April 1946, in the rank of Captain, of the U.S. Naval School, General Line, Naval Base, Newport, RI. From June 1949 to January 1950, he commanded the USS Springfield, after which he served as Commander Destroyer Flotilla One. In 1952, he became Commander Military Sea Transportation Service, Pacific Area, with headquarters in San Francisco, CA.

In December 1952, he became Superintendent of the U.S. Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA, and, in December 1955, reported as Commander Training Command, U.S. Pacific Fleet.

In addition to the Navy Cross, the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit with Combat "V," and the Commendation Ribbon, Vice Admiral Moosbrugger received the Yangtze Service Medal, American Defense Service Medal, Fleet Clasp, the American Campaign Medal, Asiatic-Pacific Campaign Medal, the World War II Victory Medal, the Philippine Liberation Ribbon, the Navy Occupation Service Medal, Asia Class, the National Defense Service Medal, the Korean Service Medal, and the United States Service Medal.

Vice Admiral Moosbrugger was married to Miss Dorothy E. Britt of Rydal, PA, in January 1932. He is survived by three sons, Frederick Britt Moosbrugger, Edward Arthur Moosbrugger and David B. Moosbrugger.

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Page last modified: 05-07-2011 01:54:10 ZULU