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USS Saratoga to be sold as scrap after failed bid to make it a floating museum

The USS Saratoga embarked on its final journey on Aug. 21, 2014. The decommissioned Forrestal-class supercarrier was built for the United States Navy in the 1950s. Now the proud ship will be torn apart and recycled for scrap metal after a bid to have it turned into a museum failed. It was decided that the USS John F. Kennedy would be used as a museum; the USS Saratoga would be scrapped after nearly four decades of loyal service.

The U.S. Navy aircraft carrier USS Saratoga (CVA-60) with her crew manning the rail on the flight deck, as she arrives in Barcelona, Catalonia, 12 February 1965.
Wikimedia Commons

According to Yahoo, Bill Sheridan was one of the individuals who tried to have the USS Saratoga transformed into a floating museum instead of scrap metal. Sheridan expressed his disappointment at having the USS Saratoga end its long and storied career this way. "It's a sad day in a way to see a great lady finish her career by being towed off to be scrapped," he said.

The USS Saratoga began its last journey when it left Naval Air Station Newport on Thursday to make its way down Narragansett Bay to the Atlantic Ocean. From there, it will travel to Brownsville, Texas, the site of ESCO Marine, via tugboat. The ship can no longer travel on its own power.

According to their website, ESCO Marine is an "88 acre full service marine yard and recycling operation" that specializes in "recyclable metals and the proper disposal of obsolete maritime vessels."

The United States Navy agreed to pay ESCO Marine one penny to take the USS Saratoga to be dismantled and recycled. The operation plans to sell the scrap metal to make money from the decommissioned ship.

In 1953, the U.S. Navy commissioned the USS Saratoga and awarded the contract to the New York Naval Shipyard of Brooklyn, New York. Work on the USS Saratoga began that December. It was commissioned in 1956 and decommissioned in 1994 after 38 years.

This wasn't the first U.S. Navy ship to bear the name USS Saratoga. There have been six ships in total named after the Revolutionary War battle. According to Mass Live, the last USS Saratoga rests at the bottom of the Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands after being "used to test the effect of nuclear explosions on warships."

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