HII lays keel for US Navy’s Arleigh Burke class destroyer

HIH/Michael Duhe
HIH/Michael Duhe

Mississippi shipbuilder Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) has authenticated the keel of the US Navy’s Arleigh Burke class guided-missile destroyer Lenah H Sutcliffe Higbee (DDG 123) at its Pascagoula shipyard.

The ship is named in honour of the first woman to receive the Navy Cross. DDG 123 will be the second ship named for Higbee. The first was a destroyer commissioned in 1945.

Higbee joined the Navy in October 1908 as part of the newly established Navy Nurse Corps, a group of women who would become known as The Sacred Twenty. She became the second superintendent of the Navy Nurse Corps in January 1911.

The ship’s sponsors, Virginia Munford, Louisa Dixon and Pickett Wilson, traced their initials onto a steel plate that will be welded inside the Lenah H Sutcliffe Higbee (DDG 123). They assisted former Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus during his term as governor of Mississippi.

Arleigh Burke-class destroyers are multi-mission ships that can conduct a variety of operations, from peacetime presence and crisis management to sea control and power projection.

DDGs are capable of simultaneously fighting air, surface and subsurface battles.

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