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The Oliver Hazard Perry-class Frigates

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With the decommissioning of USS Simpson (FFG 56) at the end of September 2015, the Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigates sail no more in the U.S. Navy. Although Perry-class FFGs will continue to serve in friendly navies around the world, the U.S. Navy is  replacing them with the littoral combat ship (LCS), soon to be upgunned, upgraded, and renamed frigates. Criticized during their development, the Perry-class frigates were at one time the most numerous ships in the U.S. Navy. While they successfully carried out the wide range of missions typical of frigates since the days of Admiral Nelson, they also paid the price, with two being severely damaged in action. USS Stark (FFG 31) was hit by two Exocet anti-ship missiles fired by an Iraqi Mirage fighter in 1987, nearly sinking. USS Samuel B. Roberts (FFG 58) struck an Iranian mine and came close to sinking as well. Both ships survived through the courageous and outstanding damage control efforts of their crews. Criticized as they might have been in the early days of the program, the Perry-class frigates served the Navy well, and will be fondly remembered by generations of U.S. Navy sailors who served aboard them. While USS Simpson was the last of the class serving the United States, FFG-7s still serve in several navies worldwide, and probably will continue to for years to come.