Hundreds of people were delighted to welcome the arrival of the USS Edson Tuesday in Bay County where it will become a centerpiece of a floating ship museum.
The 418 feet destroyer, launched in 1958, has been recognized as national historic landmark. It served the country for 30 years and played a significant role during the Cold War and the Vietnam War. On January 1960, the USS Edson had its first deployment to the Western Pacific.
“She came up the river with nose up high. She looks great. Good ole’ lady, and she’s home,” said Michael J. Kegley, President of Saginaw Valley Naval Ship Museum.
In 2004, the first application for the new ownership of USS Edson was turned in. However, it wasn’t until 2007 that the museum learned they will have the destroyer.
Aside from Kegley, a few other people got a quick chance to get on board the USS Edson on Tuesday, one of them is Dale Wells, Former USS Edson Crew Member, who got to know the ship inside and out from 1974 to 1979.
“One fourth of my Navy career was on her. So yes, there’s a tremendous amount of memories on here,” Wells said.
The USS Edson’s permanent home will be near the Independence Park Boat Launch in Bay County’s Bangor Township. Turning the ship into a museum is expected to cost $1.4 million, according to officials.