USNS Lewis B. Puller christened today
SAN DIEGO (CNS) – The mobile landing platform USNS Lewis B. Puller isscheduled to be christened in a ceremony today, according to shipbuilderGeneral Dynamics NASSCO.
Martha Puller Downs, the daughter of the highly decorated Marine the 785-foot-long ship is named after, will perform the traditional breaking of achampagne bottle against the hull of the vessel, which is designed to serve asan offshore staging area for a variety of operations.
Gen. Joseph Dunford Jr., the Marine commandant, will deliver the keynotespeech.
It’s the third ship of the class, and the first to be configured as an“afloat forward staging base.” The variant includes a flight deck, fuel andequipment storage, berthing for 250 troops and repair spaces, according to theNavy.
Lewis “Chesty” Puller served in World War II and Korea and became theonly Marine to be awarded the Navy Cross five times.
“This ceremony not only honors a true Marine hero and legend, but alsothe men and women who have worked so diligently to bring this first-of-its kindship from concept to reality,” said Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus. “It isbecause of their efforts that the future USNS Lewis B. Puller will enable ourmaritime forces to accomplish myriad missions while operating forward just as“Chesty” did throughout his nearly 40-year career.”
According to the defense publication IHS Jane’s 360, the Puller isscheduled to be delivered in September and to deploy next year.