US shipbuilder Bath Iron Works (BIW) marked the construction of future Arleigh Burke-class destroyer Harvey C. Barnum Jr. (DDG 124) at its shipyard in Bath, Maine, on May 17.
The start of construction milestone signifies the first 100 tons of steel being cut.
The ship, a Flight IIA: Technology Insertion destroyer, is named for Col. Harvey C. Barnum Jr. (Ret.), a Marine who as a 1st Lieutenant rallied a pinned down rifle company during a battle in Ky Phu in Quang Tin Province, Vietnam, led them in an attack on entrenched enemy positions, directed the evacuation of dead and wounded comrades and ultimately helped seize his battalion’s objective. His heroism in that firefight earned him the Medal of Honor.
On May 17, the ship’s namesake, Col. Harvey “Barney” Barnum, Jr. (Ret.), was on hand to officially mark the start of fabrication on the ship.
Ten days earlier, on May 7, Huntington Ingalls Industries marked the start of construction works on the future USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125), the navy’s first Flight III destroyer with improved capability and capacity to perform anti-air warfare (AAW) and ballistic missile defense (BMD).
“This is an exciting time in the DDG-51 program as we celebrate the start of construction on DDG-124 and DDG-125,” said Capt. Casey Moton, DDG 51 class program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. “Both of these ships are named after Medal of Honor recipients and we are proud to honor their legacy with such capable warfighters.”