The US Navy’s upcoming Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer will be named after late US Senator Ted Stevens, who represented Alaska from 1968 to 2009.
Stevens flew with the Army Air Corps during World War II from 1943 to 1946. He received the Distinguished Flying Cross before being discharged in 1946.
Stevens, who was the longest-serving Republican US senator, was killed in a plane crash in Alaska in 2010.
US Navy Secretary Richard Spencer said: “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. I am pleased that his legacy of service and dedication to national security will live on in the future USS Ted Stevens.”
The Arleigh Burke-class destroyers are used to carry out operations ranging from peacetime presence and crisis response to sea control and power projection.
The future USS Ted Stevens (DDG 128) will be equipped to fight air, surface and subsurface battles simultaneously.
The destroyer is expected to have both offensive and defensive weapon systems designed to support maritime warfare, including integrated air and missile defence and vertical launch capabilities.
Built at Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Ingalls shipbuilding division in Pascagoula, Mississippi, the ship will span a length of 509ft and a beam length of 59ft. The vessel will be able to operate at speeds of more than 30k.
Spencer also announced the name of another future Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer. It will be named in honour of US Navy Vietnam veteran and former US Senator from Alabama, Admiral Jeremiah Denton.