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USS Bowen (DE-1079/FF-1079) was a Knox-class frigate in the United States Navy. She was named for Vice Admiral Harold G. Bowen, Sr. (1883-1965), former chief of the Naval Research Laboratory and the Office of Naval Research, who was deceased at the time of her commissioning. Admiral Bowen's son and namesake, Harold G. Bowen, Jr., who also retired as a Vice Admiral, presided over the U.S. Navy's 1969 inquiry into the Pueblo incident.

USS Bowen (FF-1079)
USS Bowen (FF-1079)
United States
Ordered: 25 August 1966
Builder: Avondale Shipyard, Westwego, Louisiana
Laid down: 11 July 1969
Launched: 2 May 1970
Acquired: 17 May 1971
Commissioned: 22 May 1971
Decommissioned: 30 June 1994
Struck: 11 January 1995
Motto: Protect and Preserve
Fate: Transferred to Turkey 22 February 2002
Name: TCG Akdeniz
Acquired: 22 February 2002
Decommissioned: 2011
Identification: F 257
General characteristics
Class and type: Knox-class frigate
Displacement: 3,220 tons (4,201 full load)
Length: 438 ft (134 m)
Beam: 46 ft 9 in (14.25 m)
Draught: 24 ft 9 in (7.54 m)
  • 2 × CE 1200psi boilers
  • 1 Westinghouse geared turbine
  • 1 shaft, 35,000 SHP (26 MW)
Speed: over 27 knots
Complement: 18 officers, 267 enlisted
Sensors and
processing systems:
  • AN/SPS-40 Air Search Radar
  • AN/SPS-67 Surface Search Radar
  • AN/SQS-26 Sonar
  • AN/SQS-35 Towed array sonar system
  • Mk68 Gun Fire Control System
Electronic warfare
& decoys:
AN/SLQ-32 Electronics Warfare System
Aircraft carried: one SH-2 Seasprite (LAMPS I) helicopter

Bowen was built by Avondale Shipyard, Westwego, Louisiana. Bowen was laid down 11 July 1969, launched 2 May 1970 and delivered 17 May 1971. She was commissioned 22 May 1971.

Commanded by CDR Arthur Drennan, US Naval Academy Class of 1964, Bowen was part of the Naval expeditionary force deployed off the coast of Beirut during the Lebanese Civil War. In early September 1983, U.S. Marines at the Beirut International Airport came under artillery fire. After repeated warnings, Bowen was ordered to fire in defense of the Marines. On 8 September 1983, Bowen opened fire with her 5" Gun, destroying several artillery pieces and a fire control tower in the mountains, 9 miles south-east of Beirut. Bowen's action received international media attention and cemented her place in history as the first Naval Warship to engage in hostile fire in the Mediterranean since World War II. In all, Bowen made 6 firing runs, firing a total of 75 shells at hostile targets. For their actions, Bowen's crew was awarded the Navy Unit Commendation, the Navy Expeditionary Medal and proudly adopted the slogan "First to Shoot in Beirut". In early October 1983, after one month on the "Gun Line", Bowen was relieved by the USS New Jersey (BB-62).

Bowen was decommissioned 30 June 1994 and struck from the Naval Vessel Register on 11 January 1995.

Bowen was disposed of through the Security Assistance Program (SAP), transferred, Foreign Assistance Act (FAA) Section 516, Southern Region Amendment, to Turkey 22 February 2002. She served there as Akdeniz (F-257) until 2011.

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