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 The bow of the ex-USS Radford surrounded by cranes as the ship awaits going into drydock (foreground)  Above deck on the Radford facing the bow, with more cranes preparing the ex-warship for reefing  Artificial reef program manager Jeff Tinsman inspects removal of Radford superstructure. Note thickness of alloy cut away.   More cutting away of the superstructure for the Radford's reefing. Retired carrier USS John F. Kennedy berthed in background  The Radford's missile holders were ready-made fish tunnels but the better passages were compartments below deck.
 Midship the Radford with a view of the superstructure that remains above deck for fish passages when the ex-destroyer is reefed.  A view from one of the cutaways in the Radford's bridge that will make the reefed ship all the more accessible to fish.  The Radford's exhaust stacks amidship with the superstructure having been cut away from them.  When one door closes, another one opens - even for fish - with removal of deck equipment on the Radford  Not an aquarium (yet), but the Radford's helicopter hanger control booth aft of the destroyer.

 Readying the Radford
The ex-destroyer as it underwent preparations for its sinking as an artificial reef and the longest ship ever
sunk for reefing in the Atlantic Ocean. Click on photos above and "below the waterline" for larger images.

 The ex-USS Arthur W. Radford, turning about in the Delaware River and into the Philadelphia Navy Yard before sinking

 The bridge of the Radford with "fish windows" cut for fish passage and recreational diving.  More of the aluminum-magnesium alloy that went into building the Radford's superstructure, now exposed.  A view from within the Radford's bridge. Windshield wipers will be an unnecessary option when she's at the bottom of the ocean.  Once she's reefed down below, there'll be no use for the Radford's safety nets, either  Could the JFK or the Forrestal, two decorated flattops, join the ex-USS Radford as Delaware artificial reefs? Stay tuned.
 The Radford has fish passages throughout, some natural, some "artificial." All will host any fish in the sea without bias.  When reefed, the Radford's bridge will extend a multifarious invitation to any fish seeking new habitat and shelter.  The "crew" of the artificial reef will not be required to heed or read the captain's orders from the Radford's active deployment  When her doors swing open this fall as an artificial reef, the Radford will become a big room with a different view.  It's not likely that flying fish will take up in the Radford, but the helicopter hangar would offer an opportunity to house them

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