Reaches Another Milestone, Celebrates Keel Laying
By Electronics Technician 2nd
Class Mark Moore, Submarine Group Two Public Affairs
NORTH KINGSTOWN, R.I. - Electric Boat Corporation
hosted a keel laying ceremony on June 9 for Virginia-class submarine
Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Mississippi (SSN 782) at the company's Quonset
Mrs. Allison Stiller, Deputy Assistant Secretary of
the Navy for Ship Programs, is the ship's sponsor and served as keel authenticator
for the ceremony.
"Mississippi, in native folklore, means
'Father of the Waters'," said Stiller. "What a fitting name for a submarine. I'm truly honored and humbled to be Mississippi's sponsor."
Mrs. Stiller authenticated Mississippi's stern unit
by chalking her initials onto a metal plate. Electric Boat welder Scott Fanning welded the initials into
the plate, which will be permanently attached to the submarine's hull prior to
delivery to the Navy.
Rear Adm. William H. Hilarides, Program Executive
Officer (PEO) Submarines, spoke about the success of the shipbuilders.
"Mississippi is well on her way to begin sea trials earlier [than previous
Virginia-class submarines]," said Hilarides. "To all of you shipbuilders in the audience, thank you for
your service to your country."
Mississippi is the ninth ship of the Virginia-class
and the fifth Navy vessel to be named for the people of the "Magnolia
State." The contract to build Mississippi was awarded to
Electric Boat on Aug. 14, 2003. Construction began in Feb. 18,
2007. Cmdr. John McGrath is Mississippi's Officer-in-Charge.
Virginia-class submarines are tailored to excel in
a wide range of warfighting missions. These include anti-submarine and surface
ship warfare; special operation forces; strike; intelligence, surveillance, and
reconnaissance; carrier and expeditionary strike group support; and, mine
View and download high resolution photos here
- USN -