Benevolence

From Islapedia

Benevolence (#) (1944-1950), 520-foot-long, 71-foot beam ship powered by dual-cylinder steam turbines. The ship was a U.S. Navy hospital ship converted from the U.S. Maritime Commission standard C-4 type cargo vessel launched as Marine Lion. Benevolence spent the waning weeks of World War II tending to those sick and wounded in operations against the home islands of Japan, and entered Japanese waters after the cease-fire in order to begin processing of liberated Allied prisoners of War. She was on station at Bikini Atoll during the 1946 atomic bomb tests, and went to China in 1946-47 for her last cruise before inactivation.

She was removed from the reserve fleet in 1950 and refitted at Mare Island Naval Shipyard for service in the Korean War. On August 25, 1950, she completed a series of routine test runs outside the Golden Gate. Proceeding in a generally easterly direction in the main ship channel at a speed of 16 to 18 knots, without using the radar, she entered a fog bank near the Farallon Islands. Suddenly the freighter Mary Luckenbach appeared out of the fog, and in spite of evasive action by the hospital ship, cut into her port side. Benevolence sank within 40 minutes. In all, 18 people lost their lives in the area's worst maritime disaster since the wreck of the Rio de Janiero in 1901.

In 1952 the wreck was dynamited as a hazard to navigation.