The USS Voge, (DE/FF-1047: frigate), was named for Rear Admiral Richard George Voge. Voge was part of the United States Navy’s Garcia class of frigates, the sixth boat in the class. Defoe Shipbuilding Company of Bay City, Michigan, earned the contract in March of 1963 and laid down her keel on November 21, 1963. Voge launched on February 4, 1965. She was commissioned on November 25, 1966, carrying two hundred thirty-one enlisted men and sixteen officers under the command of CDR William F. Keller.
Voge finished her outfitting at the Boston Naval Shipyard in April of 1967. From there, she left for her new homeport of Newport, Rhode Island. The next month, she left Newport for her shakedown cruise and returned in late June. In early August, she returned to Boston for repairs and post-shakedown assessment until early 1968.
Starting in March of 1968, Voge deployed with Escort Squadron 6 at Newport. She started out with her duties in assisting with the creation and growth of advanced antisubmarine maneuvers and their corresponding technologies. She operated from Newport through the last days of 1968.
Voge participated in anti-submarine exercises with the Spanish and Portuguese navies during April of 1969. She also sailed during the Royal Review of the NATO fleet in May as well as visiting ports in France, Scotland and Germany in June. On her way back home, she encountered a Soviet submarine in the Atlantic. By employing her antisubmarine tactics, she earned a Meritorious Unit Commendation. She continued practicing her anti-sub tactics, as well as testing out new methods of anti-sub warfare, until her first scheduled overhaul in Boston in August 1970.
Voge started the new year in post-overhaul sea trials, followed by gunnery exercises and a refresher training course near Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. She returned to Newport in May and spent the rest of the year in operations near Narragansett Bay. In the spring of 1972 she conducted joint antisubmarine exercises with the Spanish and Portuguese navies, and then returned to Newport in April through heavy storms in the Atlantic.
Upon her return, Voge prepared to deploy to the Mediterranean with the US Sixth Fleet. From June until December, she took part in a several exercises, including the NATO exercise “Deep Furrow” in September. She also conducted a number of port stops, most notably a visit to the Turkish Naval College in August. She also carried out duties involving tracking Soviet submarines through the Mediterranean. During that mission, she trailed a Soviet sub almost three hundred miles into the Atlantic. At the end of her deployment, she returned to Newport a week before Christmas 1972.
With a few exceptions, Voge spent most of 1973 engaged in operations along the US east coast. She took part in two naval exercises in March as well as bilateral exercises with the French Navy in June. She also helped to train a new generation of sailors and officers that year, with a tour as a destroyer school ship in April and a training cruise for Naval Academy midshipmen in July. She moved to her new homeport of Mayport, Florida in August and continued operating along the Florida coast for the rest of the year.
January of 1974 saw Voge leave her new homeport and once again deploy with the Sixth Fleet. After her six-month deployment, she returned home in July, where she spent the month in upkeep. She sailed for Charleston in September for her first regular overhaul, which lasted until July of 1975. During the overhaul time, Voge was redesignated from a destroyer escort (DE) to a frigate (FF) as part of a Navy-wide program. From July until October, Voge underwent refresher training and naval gunfire support exercises. She returned to Charleston to repair issues with her main propulsion plant until late December.
Voge resumed normal duties in February of 1976 when she took part in exercises with the Dutch and British navies in the Caribbean. When she came back to Mayport, she geared up for another Mediterranean deployment. She made a short trip to Charleston, then left to join the Sixth Fleet to carry out training exercises with allied navies and continue her duties of following Soviet submarines. During a mission near the Greek coast in late August, Voge ran into a Soviet submarine and suffered major damage, including a damaged propeller, torn bulkheads and buckled hull plating. Two other ships helped tow her back to a dry dock facility in France for repairs, where she sat until October. In November, she underwent sea trials and headed back to Mayport in early December.
Voge stayed in port through most of the first half of 1977. The only times she left port was to take short trips to assess the capabilities of her main propulsion plant. She attempted to return to duty with the Sixth Fleet in July, but had to turn back due to a problem with her tanks of drinkable water. A month later, she made her deployment and participated in numerous exercises before returning home again just before Christmas.
From January to May of 1978, Voge carried out training exercises off the Florida coast. That June, she sailed for the Bahamas to service US submarines in the area, and then voyaged north along the US east coast to Charleston. The following month, she made port at the Braswell Shipyard in Boston for an overhaul, which would last for over a year.
Voge finished her overhaul work in October 1979. She left port for a deployment in the Persian Gulf in June of 1980 and was on alert in the area when the Iran-Iraq war started in October of that year while earning the Navy Expeditionary Medal. She spent December in the Bahamas while carrying out antisubmarine exercises.
During 1981, she took part in the exercise READEX 1-81 in the Caribbean in February and March as well as COMPUTEX during that summer. She sailed for another Middle East deployment in August and returned to Mayport in December. Her remaining years of service were spent on anti-drug trafficking missions in the Caribbean and eastern Pacific.
Voge was decommissioned on August 23, 1989 and stricken from the Naval Register on December 15, 1992. She was stored at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard before being sold for scrap in May of 2000.
Characteristics of the USS Voge (Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)
Class and type: Garcia-class frigate
Displacement: 2,624 tons (light)
3,400 tons full
Length: 414 ft 6 in (126.3 m)
Beam: 44 ft 1 in (13.4 m)
Draft: 24 ft 6 in (7.5 m)
Propulsion: 2 Foster-Wheeler boilers, 1 steam turbine, 35,000 shp, single screw
Speed: 27 knots
Range: 4,000 nautical miles (7,000 km) at 20 knots (40 km/h)
Complement: 16 officers, 231 enlisted
Sensors and processing systems: AN/SPS-40 air search radar
AN/SPS-10 surface search radar
AN/SQS-26 bow mounted sonar
Armament: 2 x 5″/38 Mk 30(2×1)
1 8-tube ASROC Mk16 launcher (16 missiles)
6 x 12.75 in (324mm) Mk 32 (2×3) torpedo tubes, Mk 46 torpedoes
2 x MK 37 torpedo tubes (fixed, stern) (removed later)
Aircraft carried: Gyrodyne QH-50 (planned) / SH-2 LAMP
Namesake: Rear Admiral Richard George Voge
Ordered: 21 March 1963
Builder: Defoe Shipbuilding Company, Bay City, Michigan
Laid down: 21 November 1963
Launched: 4 February 1965
Acquired: 15 November 1966
Commissioned: 25 November 1966
Decommissioned: 23 August 1989
Struck: 15 December 1992
Fate: Disposed of by scrapping, dismantling, 01/19/2001
November 1963 – USS Voge keel laid down
February 1965 – USS Voge launched
November 1966 – USS Voge commissioned
May 1967 – USS Voge started shakedown cruise
March 1968 – USS Voge joined Escort Squadron 6
April 1969 – USS Voge conducted antisubmarine exercises with Spanish and Portuguese navies
July 1969 – USS Voge encountered Soviet submarine and earned Meritorious Unit Commendation
August 1970 – USS Voge sailed to Boston for first scheduled overhaul
March 1971 – USS Voge took refresher training cruise near Guantanamo Bay, Cuba
June 1972 – USS Voge deployed to Mediterranean with US Sixth Fleet
September 1972 – USS Voge took part in NATO Exercise “Deep Furrow”
November 1972 – USS Voge followed Soviet submarine 300 miles into Atlantic Ocean from Mediterranean
January 1973 – USS Voge operated near US east coast
August 1973 – USS Voge changed homeport to Mayport, Florida
January 1974 – USS Voge deployed to Mediterranean with US Sixth Fleet
September 1974 – USS Voge sailed to Charleston for scheduled overhaul
July 1975 – USS Voge redesignated from destroyer escort (DE) to frigate (FF)
February 1976 – USS Voge took part in exercises with Dutch and British navies
August 1976 – USS Voge collided with Soviet submarine and suffered major damage
July 1977 – USS Voge sailed back to Mayport to repair drinkable water tanks
December 1977 – USS Voge returned to Mayport after Mediterranean deployment
July 1978 – USS Voge sailed to Boston for scheduled overhaul
October 1979 – USS Voge completed overhaul
October 1980 – USS Voge earned Navy Expeditionary Medal
February 1981 – USS Voge took part in exercise READEX 1-81
April 1981 – USS Voge took part in exercise COMPUTEX
August 1981 – USS Voge deployed to Middle East
August 1989 – USS Voge decommissioned
December 1992 – USS Voge stricken from Naval Vessel Register
Crewmembers of the USS Patterson:
An unofficial list of crewmembers that served on the USS Voge can be found on the unofficial navy website at: http://navysite.de. This list is compiled by former crewmembers that voluntarily register. Some quoted comments from former crewmembers are listed below; many more are available on the source website at the following web address:
John Gotimer: (Served from April 1967 – April 1969) “When I joined the Voge E8& E9′s were standing top watches in the fireroom. In the next six months I was relieving E6′s on lower level watches.E5′s and below hit the bilges. This damn ship was too topheavy.”
John Saaybe: (Served from March 1971 – July 1974) “Had the time of my life. Made lots of good friends. Oddly enough the Voge is sitting in the old Philadelphia Navy Yard rusting away in moth balls not 20 miles from where I now live. Hey would love to hear from any old crew members.”
Nicholas Pallitto: (Served from November 1976 – September 1979) “Started out as a Boiler Tech, then requested change to rate Signalman Striker. Rose to the rank of SM2. Good times except for the Russian Sub ramming us! made 3 med cruises in 3 years alot of sea time. Worked for 2 complete commands, Capt through XO.”
Patrick Boyce: (Served from March 1980 – June 1982) “Its been a longtime since my time served on the Voge.I seen alot ,learned alot and met alot of good friends. I hope they are all doing well.”
William Hill: (Served September 1987 – August 1989) “The greatest ship of its class and the best ship that i ever served on during my 24 years and six months of service great crew and a great C.O. (CDR James Barton) and our last unscheduled med cruise 88-89 good luck to all.“