Saturday, February 19, 2005

No Messing

I’m a former “Airedale” – that’s US Naval Air for you unwashed. But I couldn’t resist the news that the Navy’s latest SSN will be joining the fleet this summer. The second nuclear attack submarine in the new Virginia class is named for the state of Texas.

USS Texas (SSN 775) is the fourth warship to bear our state’s name, and is completing at Newport News Shipbuilding & Drydock Co. in Virginia. Its keel was laid 12 July, 2002. First Lady Laura Bush, the submarine’s sponsor, christened Texas during a ceremony at Northup Grumman Newport News Shipyard in Newport News, on 31 July, 2004.

The CO’s Commander John J. Litherland. The Chief of Boat is Master Chief Petty Officer Mark K. Brooks.

The official seal shows a three-quarter starboard view of Texas, with the shape of the state on its hull. Inside the state outline is the symbol of the atom. The submarine illustration is backed by the traditional badge of the Texas Rangers. The four white stars represent the four American warships to bear the name of the great state of Texas. The battle-torn Lone Star Flag flying behind the boat recalls the heroes of the Alamo. []

DON’T MESS WITH TEXAS is the motto - our well-known state slogan and a warning for those who want to keep USS Texas from carrying out her missions.

Go get ‘em, Texas.

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