- "These tests, such as, 'Autumn Gold',
and 'Project Shad', and the un-named tests aboard the Herbert J.Thomas
(DD833), and unknown other tests, may have, in effect, 'Murdered' hundreds
- perhaps thousands - of US Military personnel while they were fighting
and serving their Country in the American military...and then lied to them
and refused them treatment for over 40 years."
- The USS HERBERT J. THOMAS (DD 833) was launched at Bath,
Maine, in March 1945, and commissioned at Boston, in May 1945. She was
named for Sergeant Herbert J. Thomas, USMCR, of the Third Marine Division,
who was killed at Bougainville in 1942 when he threw himself on a live
grenade to save the lives of his comrades. He was awarded the Congressional
Medal of Honor posthumously for this act of heroism.
- The Destroyer THOMAS served as part of the task forces
supporting the occupation of Japan and Korea at the end of World War II.
The Thomas served in Korea (three times), and served in the Taiwan
- The THOMAS went into the Mare Island Naval Shipyard for
conversion in June, 1964. The ship had been scheduled for coventional
Fleet Rehabilitation and Modernization (FRAM) changes, but while in the
yard, a decision was made to incorporate the STOPS system for its first
test on an operational ship. The THOMAS is the only ship in the
class to be outfitted with STOPS. The ship was Classified as Secret, and
all personnel told, not to talk about it.
- STOPS stands for "Shipboard Toxicological
Protective System." The System is designed to protect sailors against
radioactive fallout or the poisonous clouds of chemical or germ warfare.
STOPS involves maintaining air pressure inside the sealed interior of
the ship that is slightly higher than the atmospheric pressure outside.
This means that when there is any break in the system, air leaks from the
inside out, forcing any radioactive or poisonous particles away from the
- Four air conditioning units, each of 135 ton capacity,
provide fresh, filtered air to all spaces within the THOMAS. If part of
the ship were damaged in battle, the pressurization and filtering system
would still function in sealed-off zones that remained intact.
- Members of the crew carry gas masks, and one piece
submarine suits, when moving from one part of the ship to another.
- The most unusual features about the appearance of the
ship is a pair of glass "Bubbles" on either side of the
stainless steel revolving doors at forward and aft entries. These bubbles
permit a man on look-out watch or the officer of the deck to get a
view on either side without stepping out on to the main deck.
- The THOMAS accompanied the carrier USS FRANKLIN D.
(CVA42) to the South China Sea as part of the strike force in the Gulf
of Tonkin. She was visited by CNO, Admiral MAC Donald, vice Admiral Hyland,
and Rear-Admiral Baumberger.
- The THOMAS proceeded directly to Naval Gunfire Support
in the Mekong Delta area of South Vietnam, shooting nearly every day,
Junks, training South Vietnam Naval Officers, ect.
- The THOMAS returned to the Gulf of Tonkin with the USS
CORAL SEA (CVA43), and USS Mullaney (DD528) for further Air Operations
and shore bombardment against North Vietnam.
- Between gunfire engagements, the THOMAS followed the
above carriers, and were sprayed with, supposedly non-toxic, sprays and
clouds, by the carriers and low flying aircraft. General Quarters (battle
stations) was called, and all hatches battened down. Each conpartment had
test tubes near the hatches, to collect air samples,to be collected later.
Gas masks were dawned and the attacks enacted.
- Gunnners, signalmen and all main deck personnel dawned
gas masks during the operations, as they were exposed to the contaminants
After the attacks, all main deck, topside personnel underwent
procedures, which included removing clothing, taking decon showers at
end of the central passage way, and entering through a stainless steel
revolving door, and dawning a fresh nuke suit. After each test, the entire
maindeck, topside of the ship, held a total salt-water washdown with
- These tests were conducted while off the coast of San
Diego, Long Beach, Valejo, Hawaii, and during during all non-combative
deployments overseas for several years. No known medical tests were ever
conducted on the crew, and it was never known, what chemicals or gases
the ship and the crew had been sprayed with. The crew members were not
considered "Test Subjects", but rather, "Test
- Only one crewman died during this time, a John D.
RD3. John died in his bunk. The rest of the crew was never told, what
- Although the THOMAS had been completely re-built,
in 1964, it was striken from the list of US navy ships (not decommissioned)
February 1, 1974, and given to the Taiwan Navy, in May of 1974, and
- I served about two years aboard the THOMAS and was
in 1967. Shortly therafter I had problems breathing, and my lungs hurt.
I visited several VA hospitals, ran tests and told, it was all in my head,
that I was perfectly healthy. I later went to several private hospitals
and was told I had Progressive Pulmanary Fibrosis, a scaring of the lungs.
I was told it was probably due to having had Pneumonia,earlier in my life,
although I don't recall having that. I was told that it would get
worse, was not curable, and that I had about three and a half years, left
- Until I recently read the news stories, about the
Chemical and Biological Warfare tests",on the crews of Naval
1960 to 1970. I couldn't figure out how I got sick.
- These tests, such as, "Autumn Gold",
and "Project Shad", and the un-named tests aboard the
J.Thomas (DD833), and unknown others, may have in effect,
hundreds, perhaps thousands of US Military personnel, while they were
and serving their Country in the American military, then lied to them,
and refused them treatment, for over 40 years.
- How Sad.
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