Dick Janke, museum vice president, visits Edson sister ship USS Barry in Washington, D.C. Efforts reportedly are being continued to obtain a donation of fuel for the towing from a major oil company to lower costs of the project.
EDSON COMING IN AUGUST
Destroyer Being Prepared in Philadelphia for Trip
Local Group Agrees with Navy to Spend $1.5 Million in Museum Development
Details of the process underway to have the ex-USS Edson, 418-foot long Vietnam era destroyer, towed here are slowly emerging.
Officials of the Saginaw Valley Naval Ship Museum (SVNSM), who have been working for more than a decade to raise funds and get approval for mooring the ship here as a memorial, have posted on their website:
"Our ship is coming soon. There are hands on deck that have begun to prepare the USS Edson for her journey. If you would like to see an amazing sight, check our mooring pier in August. We will keep you posted when we know exact dates."
The announcement indicates that workers, reportedly from a contractor hired by SVNSM, are on board the Edson as it rides at anchor in the former Philadelphia Navy Yard, now called the Philadelphia Inactive Ships Storage Facility.
Efforts reportedly are being continued to obtain a donation of fuel for the towing from a major oil company to lower costs of the project.
The U.S. Navy NAVSEA organization has posted and news release and a copy of the contract with the local group on its website - http://www.navsea.navy.mil/teamships/Inactiveships/Inactiveships_News.aspx.
"Ex-Edson (DD 946) Donation Transfer Contract Signed
5/17/2012 - At a ceremony today in Bay City, MI, the Saginaw Valley Naval Ship Museum formally signed the donation transfer contract for ex-Edson. However, ownership of ex-EDSON does not transfer to the Museum until the Museum takes physical custody of the ship by removing it from the Navy's inactive ship facility in Philadelphia, PA. The Museum has 60 days, until July 16, 2012, to remove the ship and commence the tow to Bay City, MI via the Saint Lawrence Seaway. A copy of the donation transfer contract can be found at www.navsea.navy.mil/teamships/Inactiveships/Donation/Edson.aspx"
The contract provides that the SVNSM will spend $1.5 million "to develop the Edson into a museum ship." The agreement also provides that the local group will spend $20,000 per year in maintenance of the ex-Edson.
The contract provides "donee to maintain the ship in a condition satisfactory to the Navy including insurance and management." The Navy retains the right to inspect the ship at any time.
After a 2008 inspection, the Navy certified that there are "no liquid items on board the ex-USS Edson that are known to contain greater than 50 ppm (parts per million) of PCBs (poly-chlorinated biphenyls, a toxic chemical)".
On 21 June 2010 the ship was inspected by Michael Smith of Applied EcoSystems Great lakes, Inc., of Burton, Michigan, who reviewed the proposed tour route for potential hazards not previously identified.
The Edson is a Forrest Sherman class destroyer decommissioned 15 December 1988. It was docked at the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum in New York City from 30 June 1989 until 14 June 2004 when it was removed and taken to Philadelphia.
Local News Article 7160
Dave Rogers is a former editorial writer for the Bay City Times and a widely read,
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