The US Navy’s third Flight III Arleigh Burke destroyer will be named in honor of US senator Ted Stevens, who represented Alaska from 1968 to 2009, US Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer has announced.
“Senator Stevens was a staunch supporter of a strong Navy and Marine Corps team who served our nation with distinction as a pilot during World War II, and later as a Senator of Alaska,” said Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer. “I am pleased that his legacy of service and dedication to national security will live on in the future USS Ted Stevens.”
Stevens served as a pilot in the Army Air Corps from 1943 to 1946 and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross before being discharged in 1946. Stevens was elected as a state representative in Alaska in 1964, re-elected in 1966, and in 1968 he was appointed to fill a vacancy in the U.S. Senate. In 1970, Stevens was elected to the seat in a special election and was subsequently re-elected five times. He left office in 2009 as the then-longest serving Republican U.S. Senator in history.
The ship will be constructed at Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Ingalls shipbuilding division in Pascagoula, Miss..
HII is already working on the first Flight III destroyer, the future USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125). Flight III destroyers will incorporate a new Advanced Missile Defense Radar (AMDR) that will replace the existing SPY-1 radar installed on the previous DDG 51 ships.
The second Flight III destroyer, future USS Louis H. Wilson Jr. (DDG 126), is being built by General Dynamics’ Bath Iron Works in Maine.