USNS John McDonnell (T-AGS-51)

USNS John McDonnell (T-AGS-51) is an oceanographic survey ship that was operated by the United States Navy's Military Sealift Command.

United States
Name: USNS John McDonnell
Namesake: Capt. John McDonnell
Awarded: 10 November 1988
Builder: Halter Marine Moss Point, Mississippi.
Laid down: 3 August 1989
Launched: 13 December 1990
In service: 15 November 1991
Out of service: 25 August 2010
Struck: 25 August 2010
Honors and
Navy Meritorious Unit Commendation, National Defense Service Medal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (2), Southwest Asia Service Medal, Armed Forces Service Medal (2)
Status: Active as fishing vessel
General characteristics
Displacement: 2,054 tons full
Length: 208 ft 5 in (63.53 m)
Beam: 45 ft (14 m)
Draft: 34 ft 10 in (10.62 m) maximum
Propulsion: 1 GM EMD 12-645E6 diesel; 2,500 horsepower (1.9 MW) sustained; 1 auxiliary diesel; 230 horsepower (172kW); 1 shaft.
Speed: 12 knots (22 km/h)
Range: Not Disclosed
Complement: 22 Civilians, 11 Scientists
Armament: Unarmed

The John McDonnell has been used by the military as primary a scientific ship. Its role has varied but is mostly dominated with the task of surveying the world's underwater geological features using side scan radar. This information provides valuable navigation information and charts for both military and civilian ships to navigate unfamiliar territory. These ships were built to fill in the holes in the navigation charts. The John McDonnell has even aided in the location of two downed F-16s in the Northern Persian Gulf in 1993 and the wreckage of a Navy helicopter in the Strait of Hormuz in 1994. Two years later, it located a crashed F-14 in the Central Persian Gulf. In 2008, it helped locate a crashed Philippine C-130 Hercules in the Davao Gulf.

The Navy deactivated the ship on 25 August 2010 and as of August 2013, the General Services Administration was offering the ship at auction.

As of June 2016, the overhauled and re-christened Seafreeze America is owned by United States Seafoods and will serve as a fishing trawler in the Bering Sea fleet.[1]


  1. "Navy ship embarks on new career in fishing fleet". The Seattle Times. 2 June 2016. Retrieved 3 June 2016.

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