History of the USS DRUM SSN 677


Awards Statistics 1968-1972 1973-1979 1980-1984 1985-1989 1990-1995

Vital Statistics
The second ship of the fleet to bear the name of fish of the family scraenidae. SSN 677 is named in commemoration of the fleet submarine DRUM (SS 228).

Built by: Mare Island Naval Shipyard Contract Award: March 15, 1967
Keel Laid: August 20, 1968 Delivery Date: April 1, 1972
Date Commissioned: April 15, 1972 Decommissioned: October 30, 1995
Overall Length: 292 ft Beam: 32 ft
Accommodations: 15 Officers 95 Enlisted Hull Material: HY 80 steel
Propulsion: Steam Turbine, S5W Reactor, single screw Weapons: 4 x 21in torpedo tubes
Displacement: 3800 t surface
4600 t submerged
Performance: submerged speed >25 kts, depth >800 ft

Unit Awards

Navy Unit Citation

First Award 1975
Second Award 1989

Meritorious Unit Citation

First Award 1976
Second Award 1979
Third Award 1988
Fourth Award 1990
Fifth Award 1992

Battle "E"

First Award 1989
Second Award 1990

The keel for the second DRUM was laid August 20, l968 at Mare Island Naval Shipyard, Vallejo, California. DRUM became the fifth of the 637 class and the forty-third and last submarine to be built at Mare Island Naval Shipyard.

May 23rd 1970 Launch

On May 23, 1970, the DRUM was christened by the ship's sponsor, Mrs. William F. Bringle, wife of Admiral William F. Bringle, USN, Commander, Naval Air Forces, U S Pacific.

CDR James L. Willis, USN, assumed command of Pre-Commissioning Unit DRUM on July 1, 1970, and started the organization and training of the crew and preparations for testing the ship. DRUM departed Mare Island Naval Shipyard for sea trials on January 17, 1972 under the watchful eye of Admiral Hyman G. Rickover.

1st CO CDR J. L. Willis(left)
1st XO
LCDR H. G. Chiles

After successful builders trials, USS DRUM was commissioned on April 15, 1972, at Mare Island Naval Shipyard. The principal commissioning speaker was RADM Maurice H. Rindskopf, USN. RADM Rindskopf was a plankowner on the first DRUM (SS 228) and was Commanding Officer of the SS 228 for the ninth and tenth war patrols.

After commissioning, DRUM conducted initial testing in Puget Sound before arriving at her lifelong homeport San Diego on 22 May. DRUM commenced six months of operational tests and fleet training exercises in Puget Sound, Hawaiian and San Diego operating areas to become a fully operational unit of the Pacific Submarine Fleet. DRUM returned to Mare Island Naval Shipyard in November for a one month Post Shakedown Availability.

Following Post Shakedown Availability and follow on operations in Southern California, DRUM deployed in March, 1973, on its first and longest Western Pacific deployment, eight months, visiting Pearl Harbor, Yokosuka and Sasebo Japan, Hong Kong, Subic Bay Philippines and Guam. DRUM returned to San Diego in November.

On July 10, 1974, CDR Willis was relieved by CDR D. C. Tarquin, USN. The summer of 1974 found the DRUM in Puget Sound and at the Nanoose B. C. for MK48 trials. The fall brought intense preparation for a WESTPAC deployment. DRUM began its second deployment to the Western Pacific in November 1974, visiting Japan, Hong Kong, Philippines and Guam before returning in May, 1975. DRUM was awarded its first Navy Unit Commendation for her successes during this deployment.

In June, 1976, DRUM departed San Diego for its third Western Pacific deployment, visiting Hong Kong, Japan, the Philippines and Guam. DRUM was awarded its first Meritorious Unit Commendation for the successes during this deployment and returned from WESTPAC in November, 1976. On November 19, 1976, CDR M. D. Bradley, USN, relieved CDR Tarquin as Commanding Officer of DRUM.

The year 1977 began with DRUM changing homeport to Bremerton Washington and entering Puget Sound Naval Shipyard for MK-48 torpedo impact testing and a non-refueling overhaul. DRUM completed the overhaul in April 1978, ahead of schedule and budget. The next several months were spent conducting operations in Puget Sound, including visits to Seattle, Everett and Esquimalt, until DRUM returned to San Diego in July 1978.

From DRUM's return to San Diego until April 1979, DRUM completed the rigorous training, testing and load-out necessary for deployment. In May 1979, DRUM began its fourth Western Pacific Deployment, which included visits to Guam, Thailand, the Philippines and Hawaii. DRUM returned five months later in October and for its successes, DRUM was awarded its second Meritorious Unit Commendation.

In March 1980, DRUM returned to Mare Island Naval Shipyard for a two month Shipyard Restricted Availability. In May, after returning to San Diego, CDR Michael F. Oliver, USN, relieved CDR Bradley. DRUM conducted several months of local operations in the Southern California operating areas before heading west for the next deployment to WESTPAC in October, which included visits to Guam and the Philippines. This deployment lasted until mid April 1981. In November 1981, DRUM departed San Diego for the Western Pacific, visiting Korea, spending Christmas in Japan and returning home at the beginning of the new year.

DRUM continued operations in Southern California operating areas, visiting San Francisco before starting the second Selected Restricted Availability in San Diego in the summer of 1982.

Upon completion of Shipyard Restricted Availability, DRUM concluded 1982 preparing for her next Western Pacific and Indian Ocean deployment. Shortly after Christmas, DRUM deployed to WESTPAC, which included operations in the Indian Ocean. During this deployment, DRUM visited the Philippines, Australia, Diego Garcia and Japan. DRUM returned to San Diego in June 1983.

On August 12, 1983, CDR Harold L. Cox, USN, relieved CDR Oliver as Commanding Officer. After another well-deserved stand-down period at the end of this deployment, DRUM participated in ADvanced CAPability (ADCAP) Mk 48 torpedo testing exercises at the tracking range at Nanoose, B.C.

In May, 1984, DRUM left San Diego for the Western Pacific, stopping in Hawaii for RIMPAC '84 a multi-national Naval exercise, then continuing west with visits to the Philippines, Japan, Guam and Thailand. DRUM returned in November 1984.

1985 began with local operations in Southern California operating areas and operations in the Puget Sound including a port visit to Esquimalt B. C. In October 1985, DRUM changed homeport a second time to Bremerton, Washington, to begin DRUM's second and final overhaul at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard.

On April 18, 1986, CDR Donald L. Winchell, Jr., USN, relieved CDR Cox becoming the sixth Commanding Officer of USS DRUM. The refueling overhaul was completed in November 1987, and DRUM returned to San Diego to its new squadron, Submarine Squadron ELEVEN

DRUM spent most of 1988 in local operations and preparing for her next deployment. After nine months of preparations and inspections since overhaul, DRUM left San Diego for two months of independent operations, for which DRUM was awarded the third Meritorious Unit Commendation.

On February 21, 1989, CDR Bruce B. Engelhardt, USN, relieved CDR Winchell as Commanding Officer. In mid May 1989, DRUM departed on its tenth trip to the Western Pacific, for which the ship was awarded the second Navy Unit Commendation. This WESTPAC included visits to Lahaina, Pearl Harbor and Japan. DRUM returned in August to San Diego and continued operations in Southern California operating areas for the remainder of the year.

1990 Began with a Selected Restricted Availability which was completed in early March. On 1 April, DRUM changed administrative commanders to Commander, Submarine Squadron THREE. DRUM participated in RIMPAC '90 in the spring which included a port call at Lahaina, Maui. After a summer of preparations, DRUM departed San Diego in September for another deployment to the Western Pacific during which the ship made port visits to Guam and Japan. DRUM was awarded the fourth Meritorious Unit Commendation for operations conducted during this deployment. For DRUM’s outstanding performance in FY 1990, the crew was awarded the Battle Efficiency "E" for Submarine Squadron THREE. DRUM returned home in March 1991.

In August 1991, DRUM commenced independent operations and returned in late September. In October, 1991, DRUM participated in San Francisco's Fleet Week '91. For DRUM's outstanding performance in FY 1991, the crew was awarded the Battle Efficiency "E" for Submarine Squadron THREE, for the second consecutive year. On November 22, 1991, CDR Wayne A. Thornton, USN, relieved CDR Engelhardt as DRUM'S eighth Commanding Officer.

In February 1992, DRUM departed on deployment to the Western Pacific. Port visits included Pearl Harbor, Japan, Guam, Singapore and Australia, completing the 680 mile transit of the inner passage of the Great Barrier Reef. During this deployment, the ship was awarded the fifth Meritorious Unit Commendation.

Drum returned in August 1992. DRUM hosted the first ever tour of a U.S. nuclear submarine by senior Russian naval officer and dignitaries.

DRUM departed on its next deployment two days after Christmas 1993. During this deployment, DRUM visited Guam, Japan and New Caledonia.

On August 8, 1994, CDR Steven C. Hall, USN, relieved CDR Thornton to become DRUM's ninth commanding Officer. During DRUM's final year, DRUM participated in San Francisco's Fleet Week '94, made a port visit to Astoria, Oregon.

On February 13, 1995, DRUM departed San Diego for the thirteenth deployment to the Western Pacific, which included a visit to Guam. DRUM returned to San Diego from its last WESTPAC on April 13.

On 27 April, CDR Mitchell K. Sauls became DRUM's tenth and final Commanding Officer.

On May 20th the USS Drum was deactivated at a ceremony attended by dignitarys and many former crew members. The keynote speaker was Admiral Henry G. Chiles Jr., Commander in Chief, U. S. Strategic Command, DRUM's first XO! At the end of the ceremony, the Commissioning pennant was hauled down and the watch secured. Thus ended 23 1/2 years of service by a submarine that was a part of the life of thousands of submariners.

In May of 1995, the DRUM was transferred to Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard to begin inactivation. DRUM was decommissioned and stricken from the Naval Register on November 30th, 1995 and is currently at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard Bremerton, WA under the Ship/Submarine Recycling Program.

The non profit group Mare Island Park Foundation is trying to raise money to return the DRUM to Vallejo, CA as a floating museum. In the FY97 Defense Bill, Congress authorized the transfer of DRUM to the City of Vallejo at "no cost to the US Government".

Most of the information provided here was obtained from the official Inactivation Ceremony program, a copy of which was supplied by Rick Cotter, Drum shipmate from the early/mid '70's. Thanks for the help Rick!



Revised: February 02, 2010