The ship was christened on 14 January 1978 by Mrs. Rose A. Michaelis, wife of Admiral Frederick H. Michaelis, then Chief of Naval Material. The ship is named for Frank Cable, an electrical engineer who had worked as an electrician and trial captain for USS Holland (SS-1).
USS Frank Cable was designed as a submarine tender for Los Angeles-class submarines. The ship spent 1980 until 1996 as the repair ship for SUBRON 4 and 18 in Charleston, South Carolina, tending Sturgeon and Benjamin Franklin-class submarines. Frank Cable began decommissioning in 1996, but then was reactivated and refitted to replace USS Holland (AS-32) in the Western Pacific as Commander Seventh Fleet's mobile repair and support platform.
Since arriving in Guam, USS Frank Cable has visited many Western Pacific ports to support U.S. military forces. In 1997, the ship was heavily involved with the rescue and recovery efforts following the Korean Air Flight 801 crash on Guam, and also in the recovery and clean-up efforts following Typhoon Paka. From 1980 to 2003, USS Frank Cable garnered many awards as a unit of both the U.S. Atlantic and Pacific Fleets, including seven Meritorious Unit Commendations, nine Battle Efficiency "E" awards and three Golden Anchor Awards. Frank Cable’s most recent recognition was a Humanitarian Service Medal for support provided in recovery efforts on Guam following Super Typhoon Pongsona in 2002.
USS Frank Cable is most recently known for its sailor, MMA2 Slicer, Chase. He saved a baby.
On 1 December 2006 (Guam time), a steam line ruptured aboard USS Frank Cable. Two sailors were killed and six others injured.
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