In a traditional ceremony on Saturday, the U.S. Navy's 53rd Aegis guided missile destroyer, Truxtun (DDG 103), built by Northrop Grumman Corporation, was christened before more than 1,000 guests.
The ship's namesake, Thomas Truxtun (1755-1822), was appointed
one of the first captains in the U.S. Navy and then selected by
President George Washington to command the nation's first naval ship,
Truxtun's fourth generation great-granddaughters, Susan Scott
Martin from Woodbury, Vt., and Carol Leigh Roelker from Cincinnati
served as the ship's co-sponsors and simultaneously broke champagne
bottles across the bow, formally naming DDG 103 Truxtun.
Truxtun (DDG 103) is the sixth ship to bear Commodore Truxtun's
name. The third Truxtun, DD 229, was destroyer during a storm off the
coast of St. Lawrence, Newfoundland, Canada along with the supply ship
Pollux in 1942. The icy waters claimed the lives of 110 crewmembers but
dozens survived thanks to the small mining town of St. Lawrence,
Newfoundland, Canada. The entire town helped to rescue the sailors.
The current mayor of St. Lawrence, Wayde Rowsell, spoke on the
history of the incident and recognized two survivors in the audience,
Ed Lewis and Lanier Phillips.
Truxtun is a multi-mission ship that can conduct a variety of operations, from peacetime presence and crisis management
to sea control and power projection, in support of the national
military strategy. Truxtun will be capable of fighting air, surface and
subsurface battles simultaneously. The ship features offensive and
defensive weapons designed to support maritime defense needs well into
the 21st century.
Cdr. Timothy R. Weber is the ship's first commanding officer and
will lead a crew of 276 officers and sailors. The 9,200-ton Truxtun is
the 25th Arleigh Burke-class destroyer built by Northrop Grumman. The
ship is 510 feet long, has a waterline beam of 59 feet and a
navigational draft of 33 feet. Four gas turbine engines
will power the
ship to speeds in excess of 30 knots.