The USS Houston is the final resting place of over 700 U.S. sailors.
It sits at the bottom of the ocean of the western coast of Java. However it has become a popular diving spot and now has been stripped of rivets and plates by divers.
This has caused oil leaks and a disturbance to the gravesite of many brave Americans. The US Navy is working to rectify this.
PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii Navy divers from the U.S. and Indonesia confirmed that a sunken vessel in the Java Sea is the World War II wreck of the USS Houston, a cruiser sunk by the Japanese that serves as the final resting place for about 700 sailors and Marines, officials announced Monday.
The Japanese sank the Houston during the Battle of Sunda Strait on Feb. 28, 1942. The ship carried 1,068 crewmen, but only 291 sailors and Marines survived both the attack and being prisoners of war. The Houston’s commanding officer, Capt. Albert H. Rooks, posthumously received the Medal of Honor for extraordinary heroism.
U.S. Pacific Fleet commander Adm. Harry Harris said Monday that divers have documented evidence the watery gravesite has been disturbed.
Assessments conducted in June to determine the condition of the Houston found that hull rivets, a metal plate and unexploded ordnance were removed from the ship. There is also oil actively seeping from the hull.
Officials are working on measures to keep the site from further disturbance.