Turner Joy (DD-951) was laid down on 30 September 1957 at Seattle, Wash., by the Puget Sound Bridge & Dredging Co.; launched on 5 May 1958; sponsored by Mrs. C. Turner Joy; and commissioned on 3 August 1959, Comdr. Ralph S. Wentworth, Jr. in command.
Following a pre-shakedown goodwill cruise to Central and South American ports and shakedown out of San Diego, Turner Joy began, early in 1960, duty as flagship both of Destroyer Squadron (DesRon) 13 and Destroyer Division (DesDiv) 131. Based at Long Beach, Calif., she formed part of an anti-submarine warfare (ASW) task group built around Hornet (CVS-12). She conducted exercises along the California coast until 17 May when she sailed with the task group for the Western Pacific.
After stops at Pearl Harbor and Apra, Guam, she stood air-sea rescue duty near the Marianas for President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s flight to visit several Asian nations. After returning to Apra briefly, the destroyer moved via the Philippines to Bangkok, Thailand. Turner Joy crossed the President’s path once more in July when the Red Chinese used the latter’s visit to Nationalist Chinese Taiwan as a pretext for shelling the tiny islands, Quemoy and Matsu. A tense month of duty with the Taiwan Strait patrol followed as the United States Navy demonstrated America’s support for one of her allies. In mid-August, the warship moved north for exercises with 7th Fleet carriers along the coast of Japan. That duty rounded out her first Western Pacific deployment, and the destroyer got underway for Yokosuka, Japan, and headed home.
Turner Joy returned to Long Beach on 16 November. Over the next 18 months, she completed an extensive overhaul and participated in numerous 1st Fleet exercises along the California coast. In October 1961, the destroyer was transferred to DesDiv 191 of DesRon 19 and assumed duty as flagship for both. On 2 June 1962, she stood out of Long Beach with an ASW task group built around Hornet (CVS 12). On her way to the Far East, the warship participated in exercises with Amphibious Squadron 5 in the Hawaiian Islands. Later, she joined the screen of Hancock (CVA-19), operating off the southern coast of Honshu, Japan. Her second deployment to the Orient was characterized by a series of exercises with ships of the 7th Fleet and of Allied navies. Areas of operations included the Sea of Japan, the Pacific east of Japan, and the South China Sea. After a final series of drills conducted with Bonhomme Richard (CVA -31), the destroyer completed that tour of duty at Yokosuka, Japan, early in December. On the 7th, she headed back to the United States where she arrived on the 21st. The ensuing 14 months brought another overhaul as well as further 1st Fleet exercises in the waters along the west coast. Those evolutions continued into 1964, and, in March the destroyer began preparations for overseas movement.