HMAS Hobart (II) was one of three improved Charles F Adams Class guided missile destroyers (DDG) built in the United States for the RAN. The destroyers were referred to in the RAN as Perth Class DDGs and their primary role was air defence. Hobart was the second ship of the class and was constructed by the Defoe Shipbuilding Company, Bay City, Michigan, USA. She was launched on 9 January 1964 by Mrs DO Hay, wife of the then Australian Ambassador to the United Nations.
On 18 December 1965, HMAS Hobart was commissioned under the command of Captain GR Griffiths, DSC, RAN at the Boston Navy Yard.
Following commissioning Hobart undertook a series of sea trials and exercises, before sailing to Norfolk, USA, in January 1966. Exercises in the Norfolk area were followed by her departure for Mayport, Florida in February and participation in further exercises in US waters. Hobart then proceeded via the Panama Canal to Long Beach, California, arriving on 13 March. After exercises in the Long Beach and San Diego areas, she proceeded to Bangor, Washington. While based there, she exercised in the Puget Sound and Ediz Hook areas before sailing for Vancouver, Canada, on 21 April. Following a successful four day visit Hobart sailed for San Francisco and San Diego where she continued to work-up before completing final acceptance trials between 16-18 May. She then returned via San Francisco to Long Beach Naval Shipyard, where she remained for most of June. In July the ship completed Post Shakedown Availability.
On 3 August, Hobart began the first leg of her voyage to Australia calling at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii and Suva before arriving in her namesake city, Hobart, Tasmania, on 1 September 1966. She berthed in her home port of Sydney for the first time on 7 September 1966. In October she took part in Exercise SWORDHILT.
During these deployments, Hobart served as part of the US Seventh Fleet, participating in Operation SEA DRAGON and serving on the gunline providing naval gunfire support (NGFS) and harassment and interdiction (H & I) fire. Targets included Viet Cong troop concentrations, military bases, bridges, caves, storage areas, weapons positions, supply routes, wells, trucks, ammunition dumps, sampans, dams, bunkers, wharves, boat yards and arms caches. She also provided support to US Marine and airborne divisions, the Army of the Republic of Vietnam as well as undertaking plane guard and escort duties with US aircraft carrier striking groups.
On 17 June 1968, Hobart was in the vicinity of Tiger Island when when she detected an aircraft approaching her from the vicinity of Cap Lay. Although the aircraft was evaluated as friendly it continued to close and fired a missile that struck Hobart amidships on her starboard side. The warhead passed through the main deck, seriously damaging several compartments, while the body of the missile passed through the outer skin of the after funnel before ending up in the forward funnel. In its passage the missile killed Ordinary Seaman Raymond John Butterworth and wounded Able Seaman JR Parker and Ordinary Seaman RF Davidson.
In February 2000, the ship paid her last visit to her namesake city, Hobart, and in March was deployed to New Zealand and the South West Pacific for the last time. She visited Auckland, Nelson, Suva and Port Vila. On her return to Australia, she called at Mackay and Geelong before her final return to Sydney. On 12 May 2000 Hobart was decommissioned following 34 years of service. Among the guests present at the ceremony was Lady Hay, who launched the ship. Hobart was later sunk as dive wreck on the South Australian coast, in Yankalilla Bay on the Southern Fleurieu Peninsula.