USS Joseph Hewes DE/FF/FFT-1078 was the 27th ship of the Knox class of Frigates. She was built by Avondale Shipyards in Westwego, Louisiana. Originally commissioned on April 24, 1971 as a Destroyer Escort (DE-1078), she joined the fleet and was assigned "Ocean Escort" duties. JOSEPH HEWES's first homeport was Newport, Rhode Island.
The ship made a West Pac cruise to Vietnam in 1972, participating in a gunfire support role off the coast of Quang Tre, Vietnam. JOSEPH HEWES would provide gunfire support all day, and then reload at night. During the highly successful Vietnam tour, a LAMPS helicopter, an SH-2D from HSL30 was deployed aboard JOSEPH HEWES. This was the first deployed LAMPS helicopter in the history of the Navy. After leaving Vietnam, JOSEPH HEWES took the long way home in the form of an Around-the-World cruise.
JOSEPH HEWES was the platform that tested the protoype SQR-18 towed array. The ASW ops of the year or so after it came aboard - Westlant ops with US units and ops in the Med against Soviets during the '73 war - redefined ASW. During the period 72-75 the ship deployed once a year - June-Dec 72 to Westpac, Sep 73-Jan 74 to the Med, and Jan 75-Jun 75 to the Indian Ocean. JOSEPH HEWES was the first USN ship to make an operational transit of the Suez Canal after it was reopened in 1975.
Redesignated Frigate on June 30, 1975, her hull number changed to FF-1078, and she was reassigned to an "Anti-Submarine Warfare" (ASW) role.
The ship went through a major overhaul at the Brooklyn Navy yards between January 1981 and February 1982. The ship then left for Charleston, went to GTMO in June and July of 1982 for Refresher Training, and did local ASW Yankee Box operations off of Bermuda in the fall of 1982 and early 1983 for the work-up for deployment in April 1983 as part of the International Peace-Keeping force in Beirut. JOSEPH HEWES did a lot of ISE (Independent Steaming) in the Med, visiting Cannes, Gaeta, Haifa, and St. Tropez during a very successful Med '83 tour. JOSEPH HEWES was approximately 10-12K yards from the Marines when they were bombed by the terrorists at BIA (Beirut Intl Airport) on October 23, 1983. JOSEPH HEWES then operated for a while with USS NEW JERSEY, during her infamous 390 days away from her homeport of Long Beach, 1983-1984.
Decommissioned on June 30, 1994, she was transferred that same day to the Taiwanese Navy and renamed the LAN YANG. Today the LAN YANG is still in service.