Samms, Mike, Sea Classics
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ENTERPRISE, NAVY'S FIRST NUCLEAR-POWERED AIRCRAFT CARRIER, INACTIVATED
Nearly 12,000 past and current crewmembers, family and friends attended the inactivation of aircraft carrier USS Enterprise (CVN-65) 1 December 2012, at Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia.
Enterprise, the world's first nuclear powered aircraft carrier, recently completed its 25th and final deployment and returned to its homeport of Naval Station Norfolk for a scheduled inactivation, held prior to the ship's terminal offload program and subsequent decommissioning.
The inactivation ceremony was the last official public event for the ship, and served as a celebration of life for the ship and the more than 100,000 sailors who served aboard.
The Chief of Naval Operations, the Commander of United States Fleet Forces, nine of 23 prior commanding officers, many decorated war heroes, and thousands of Enterprise veterans attended the event.
"Enterprise is a special ship and crew, and it was special long before I got here," said Capt. William C. Hamilton, Jr., the 23rd and final commanding officer, during the ceremony.
"Before I took command of this ship, I learned the definition of 'enterprise,' which is 'an especially daring and courageous undertaking driven by a bold and adventurous spirit.' Fiftyone-years ago, this ship was every bit ofthat definition."
"Here we are 51-yrs later," he continued, "celebrating the astonishing successes and accomplishments of this engineering marvel that has roamed the seas for more than half the history of Naval Aviation. Daring, courageous, bold, and adventurous indeed."
In honor ofthat spirit, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, in a video message played at the ceremony, announced that the name Enterprise will live on as the officially passed the name to CVN-80, the third Fordclass carrier and the ninth ship in the US Navy to bear the name.
Commissioned on 25 November 1961, the eighth ship to bear the illustrious name Enterprise, the "Big E" was the world's first nuclearpowered aircraft carrier.
A veteran of 25 deployments to the Mediterranean Sea, Pacific Ocean, and the Middle East, Enterprise has served in nearly every major conflict to take place during her history. From the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 to six deployments in support of the Vietnam conflict through the Cold War and the Gulf Wars, Enterprise was there. On 11 September 2001, Enterprise aborted her transit home from a long deployment after the terrorist attacks, and steamed overnight to the North Arabian Sea. "Big E" once again took her place in history when she launched the first strikes in direct support of Operation Enduring Freedom.
More than 100,000 sailors and Marines have served aboard Enterprise during its lifetime. It has been home ported in both Alameda, California, and Norfolk, Virginia.
DDG-1000 PROGRAM SUCCESSFULLY INTEGRATES DECKHOUSE
The Navy's next generation destroyer, the future USS Zumwalt (DDG-1000), completed a major ship milestone with the successful lift and integration of the deckhouse on to the ship's hull 14 December.
The 1000-ton deckhouse was fabricated by Huntington Ingalls Industries in Gulfport, Mississippi, and delivered to the Navy in October 2012. The deckhouse was then transported to Bath, Maine, for integration with the ship's hull, which is under construction at General Dynamics Bath Iron Works.
"This is a major milestone for the program as this ship construction progresses," said Capt. Jim Downey, DDG-1000 class program manager, Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. "The successful integration of the deckhouse and hull is a testament to the tremendous design and planning efforts that were instrumental to this program."
With the successful lift and integration of the deckhouse, nine of nine ultra units are now on land level at Bath Iron Works.
"The industry government team meticulously planned the 100-ft static lift of the deckhouse and translation of the 610-ft hull into position under the deckhouse," said Downey. …