U.S. shipbuilder General Dynamics Bath Iron Works christened the U.S. Navy’s newest guided-missile destroyer Rafael Peralta (DDG 115) at a ceremony held on its Bath, Maine shipyard on Saturday, October 31.
The ship is named for Sgt. Rafael Peralta, U.S. Marine Corps, who was deployed to Iraq in Operation Iraqi Freedom and was killed November 15, 2004, during the Second Battle of Fallujah in house-to-house urban combat. Sgt. Peralta’s mother, Rosa Maria Peralta, served as the ship's sponsor, officially christening the vessel by breaking a bottle of champagne against its bow.
Also present for the christening was Marine Corps General Robert B. Neller, who served as the ceremony's principal speaker.
The shipyard began building DDG 115 in November 2011, and delivery to the U.S. Navy is scheduled for 2016.
DDG 51 destroyers are multi-mission combatants offering defense against a wide range of threats, including ballistic missiles. It operates in support of carrier battle groups, surface action groups, amphibious groups and replenishment groups, providing a complete array of anti-submarine, anti-air and anti-surface capabilities.