Ford Christening Connects President to Navy Roots

marinelink.com
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Ship's Sponsor Susan Ford Bales, daughter of President Gerald R. Ford, christens the Navy's newest aircraft carrier. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Joshua J. Wahl)

With the strike of a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow by the ship's sponsor, the Navy christened its newest aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), the lead ship of the new Gerald R. Ford class, Nov. 9, in a ceremony at Huntington Ingalls Newport News Shipbuilding in Newport News, Va.

Susan Ford Bales, Ford's daughter and the ship's sponsor, had the honor of christening the ship in front of more than 20,000 Sailors, shipbuilders and civilians, bringing to life the Navy's newest aircraft carrier design in more than 40 years.

"I christen thee United States Ship Gerald R. Ford," said Bales, breaking the bottle across the bow. "May God bless all those who sail in her."

The Ford class is designed with significant quality-of-life improvements and reduced maintenance. These innovations are expected to improve operational availability and capability, and reduce total ownership cost over its 50-year service life by $4 billion compared with Nimitz-class carriers.

The ship is also designed to evolve with advances in technology.

"The carrier is our Navy's most adaptable platform," said Adm. Jonathan Greenert, chief of naval operations. "This ship will not only launch the aircraft we currently have in inventory, it will launch aircraft we haven't even begun to design. USS Enterprise (CVN 65), a ship we inactivated after more than 50 years of service, was relevant from her first day in service through her last."

Greenert praised the designers, shipbuilders and Sailors who together have brought the ship to this important milestone.

"Ford will herald a new era of our carrier fleet," said Greenert. "She is truly a technological marvel. We should embrace technology, but it is our people who underpin our success."

The christening of the ship comes after more than 12 years of planning and construction. Newport News Shipbuilidng laid the keel in 2009 and is scheduled to deliver the ship to the Navy in 2016.

While the shipbuilder construction and systems installations continue, the Navy is building, training and developing Ford's crew to operate and maintain the state-of-the-art ship.

"Navy tradition dictates that today's christening ceremony will spark life and luck into this great ship, but the true life of this ship will come from the unparalleled hard work, professionalism and dedication of the Gerald R. Ford crew," said Capt. John Meier, commanding officer of Pre-Commissioning Unit Gerald R. Ford. "In partnership with Newport News Shipbuilding, we will match the most technologically advanced and adaptable platform in our Navy's history with the most adaptable and technically proficient crew."

CVN 78 honors the 38th President of the United States and pays tribute to his lifetime of service in the Navy, in the U.S. government and to the nation. During World War II he attained the rank of lieutenant commander in the Navy, serving on the light carrier USS Monterey (CVL-26). Ford was the first vice president and, in the aftermath of the Watergate scandal, succeeded the first president ever to resign, serving in the country's highest office from 1974-1977.

Bales reflected upon her father's final letter before his death, written to then-Secretary of the Navy Donald C. Winter, where the president wrote, "Thus, it is a great source of pride and humility to know that an aircraft carrier bearing my name will be forever connected with the valor and patriotic service of men and women of the United States Navy."
 

Maritime Today


The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter April 2016 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Massive Layoff Ahead for Hyundai Heavy

Another massive reduction in the Korean shipbuilding workforce may come as most shipyards are still struggling with falling orders and mounting losses, reports Yonhap quoting industry sources.

USCG Foundation Run to Remember Events Announced

The Coast Guard Foundation, a non-profit organization committed to the education and welfare of Coast Guard members and their families, announced this year’s Run

Port of Vancouver CEO Coleman to Step Down

Todd Coleman, CEO of Port of Vancouver USA, step down from his position May 19, after 15 years with the port.   Coleman, a Professional Engineer, began his career with the port in 2001,

Shipbuilding

Massive Layoff Ahead for Hyundai Heavy

Another massive reduction in the Korean shipbuilding workforce may come as most shipyards are still struggling with falling orders and mounting losses, reports Yonhap quoting industry sources.

Daewoo Shipyard Posts Q1 Operating Loss

South Korean shipbuilder Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. posted a first-quarter loss after incurring more costs to finish some offshore projects.   First-quarter

NASSCO Delivers First ECO Class Tanker for SEA-Vista

On Thursday, April 28, 2016, General Dynamics NASSCO delivered the first ship in a series of three ECO Class tankers currently under construction for SEA-Vista LLC.

Maritime Security

Arabian Shipping at Risk of Al Qaeda Attack

Al Qaeda's Yemen branch remains a powerful force and poses a growing risk to merchant ships in vital waterways nearby despite efforts by Yemeni government forces

$280m Deal for Pacific Patrol Boats Replacement

The Turnbull Government today signed a contract with Austal Ships Pty Ltd to build and sustain up to 21 steel-hulled vessels to replace the existing fleet of Pacific

Maritime Surveillance Drone Testing to Begin this Summer

The AR5 Life Ray UAS, developed by TEKEVER, has been selected by the European Space Agency (ESA) and the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA) to demonstrate the

Eye on the Navy

$280m Deal for Pacific Patrol Boats Replacement

The Turnbull Government today signed a contract with Austal Ships Pty Ltd to build and sustain up to 21 steel-hulled vessels to replace the existing fleet of Pacific

This Day In Naval History: May 4

1917 - Destroyer Division 8, commanded by Cmdr. Joseph K. Taussig, arrive at Queenstown, Ireland, to protect convoy escorts against German U-Boats. 1942 - Battle

This Day In Naval History: May 3

1777 - During the American Revolution, the Continental lugger Surprise, led by Capt. Gustavus conyngham, captures the British mail packet Prince of Orange and the brig Joseph in the North Sea.

Government Update

FMC Chairman Applauds USCG Statement on Container Weights

Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) Chairman Mario Cordero commended the Coast Guard for issuing a bulletin last week regarding container weights that he hopes allows

OMB - Subchapter M Cleared for Publication

The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) completed its review of the draft final rule entitled Inspection of Towing Vessels, also known as "Subchapter M." The

Tanker Departs Libya Empty amid Political Crisis

A tanker that an oil company set up by Libya's eastern government prevented from loading has left the eastern port of Marsa el-Hariga, a port official said on Wednesday.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Pipelines Pod Propulsion Port Authority Ship Electronics Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1434 sec (7 req/sec)