The USS San Francisco served in the strategically critical Battle of Guadalcanal in World War II. The ship was severely damaged in that battle, and was brought back to San Francisco for repairs.
The center piece of this memorial is a section of the damaged flag bridge of the USS San Francisco. The next photo in this gallery shows the location of the damage on an illustration of the ship.
In her career, the The USS San Francisco earned 17 battle stars. After the war, this memorial was erected by San Franciscans to commemorate her service and the men who were lost in the war.