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Navy to Name Next Carrier After JFK

Have no issues with this.  I wasn’t among the thousands of folks hoping to see CVN-79 get named the U.S.S. America or the U.S.S Enterprise – the 9th such ship to be named as such in the history of the American Navy.

Also, President Kennedy is a legit Navy hero for his efforts to save his crew after the sinking of PT 109.  Navy heroes deserve boats named after them; it’s the sort of thing they’ve earned.

This will be the second carrier named the U.S.S. John F. Kennedy, the first was decommissioned in 2007.  CVN-79 will replace the soon to be decommissioned U.S.S. Nimitz.

Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus announced today the next Gerald R. Ford-class aircraft carrier will be named the USS John F. Kennedy.

The selection John F. Kennedy, designated CVN 79, honors the 35th President of the United States and pays tribute to his service in the Navy, in the government, and to the nation.

“President John F. Kennedy exemplified the meaning of service, not just to country, but service to all humanity,” said Mabus. “I am honored to have the opportunity to name the next aircraft carrier after this great Sailor and inspirational leader, and to keep the rich tradition and history of USS John F. Kennedy sailing in the U.S. Fleet.”

Born in Brookline, Mass., May 29, 1917, Kennedy graduated from Harvard in 1940, and entered the Navy in October 1941.

During World War II, Kennedy took command of PT 109 at Tulagi Island in the Solomons, with a mission to intercept Japanese ships attempting to resupply their barges in New Georgia. In the early morning hours of Aug. 2, 1943, Kennedy’s ship was inadvertently struck by an enemy ship and split in half. During the course of the next six days, Kennedy led his crew members to safety and an eventual rescue. Kennedy received the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for the rescue of his crew and a Purple Heart for injuries he sustained when his ship was struck.

After his military service, Kennedy became a congressman representing the Boston area, he was elected to the Senate in 1953, and in 1961 became the youngest person to be elected president.

There will be ten total “Ford-Class” super-carriers, each built and named about three years apart. The new JFK is only the second to be named.

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