The U.S. Navy will honor New Hampshire astronaut Alan Shepard
by naming a new combat support ship after him. The USS Shepard is being built in San Diego by National Steel and Shipbuilding Co. It will join the Navy fleet in March 2007. It will be 1,000 feet long and its primary mission will be to deliver supplies to Navy ships, transfer cargo, and provide logistical support within a carrier strike group
. Shepard was born and raised in Derry and served in the Navy and NASA. He became the first American in space in 1961. Ten years later, he led the Apollo 16 mission to the moon.