What Was the USS Saratoga?


Quick Answer

The USS Saratoga was a United States military aircraft carrier. The name can refer to any of six ships that have had that name, but the two most famous are the USS Saratoga (CV-3), which was used during World War II and sank in 1946, or the USS Saratoga (CV-60), which served during the Vietnam War and the Cuban Missile Crisis.

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The USS Saratoga (CV-3) was launched in 1925 and was involved in some of the first battles after the United States entered World War II following the bombing of Pearl Harbor, including the Battle of Wake Island. It later served around the Solomon Islands and in the Indian Ocean, where it was damaged by bombs. Newer aircraft carriers had made it obsolete, so it was used to carry troops home and then for nuclear testing during Operation Crossroads, where it eventually sank.

The USS Saratoga (CV-60) was used by the Navy from 1956 to 1994. It also served in the Balkans and during Operation Desert Storm. One of its most prominent operations was the rescue of a hijacked cruise ship, the Achille Lauro. The hijackers had gotten on a plane, which fighter jets launched from the Saratoga forced to land. Although the Navy tried to donate the ship to a museum, it was unable to do so. Instead, the USS Saratoga (CV-60) was sold for scrap and dismantled in Texas.

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