US First Lady Christens USS Illinois

General Dynamics Electric Boat christened the Illinois (SSN 786) Oct. 10, the 13th submarine of the U.S. Navy’s Virginia Class.

The Saturday morning christening ceremony took place at Electric Boat’s Groton shipyard with the Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus as the ceremony’s principal speaker. First Lady Michelle Obama, the ship’s sponsor, christened the ship before an audience of approximately 7,500 people.

USS Illinois will be delivered to the Navy in 2016.

Virginia-class submarines are among the most effective platforms in the Navy’s portfolio. These submarines are equipped to wage multi-dimensional warfare around the globe. In addition to anti-submarine, anti-surface ship and counter-mine warfare, Illinois will support surveillance, special operations and covert strike missions.

Image: US Department of Defense

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