USS Jackson Commission Ceremony

Less than 48 hours from now, the Navy’s newest littoral combat ship will come to life right here in Gulfport. The USS Jackson is the first and only ship to be named after the state of Mississippi. News 25’s Kendra Turley gives us a sneak peek inside the ship.
Crews are hard at work preparing for the commission of the Navy’s newest littoral combat ship, the USS Jackson. The ship will come to life off the coast of Mississippi. Command Senior Chief Ken Ballard said, “To serve onboard a platform that’s named after the capitol of your state is the opportunity of a lifetime. I’m pretty excited. My crew is even more excited. So, we’re going to go out and see what she can do.”
Over 400 feet in length and weighing nearly 3,000 tons, the USS Jackson is designed to move fast in shallow water. The ship’s water jets allow it to make sharp and quick turns within short distances. The USS Jackson uses two gas turbine and two diesel engines to power its four steerable water jets, giving the ship the ability to travel up to 40 knots. Commanding Officer Allen D. Adkins said, “There’s three primary mission sets that the littoral combat ship looks to fill, one is surface warfare, anti-submarine warfare and anti-mine warfare.”
The crew trusted to fulfill these missions consists of 53 men and women from all over the country. Crew member John Rapetti said, “I came from Tugs before this, so I’m used to tight-knit small groups. And anytime you have this type of work load and this few people, it builds a camaraderie that you’re just not going to get anywhere else on the fleet.”
The USS Jackson will be commissioned and join the active duty fleet this coming Saturday. Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus will deliver the principal address. “We’ve been in Mobile, Alabama for six months getting ready to go to the pier. We’re ready to get out there, get underway and make things happen,” said Adkins. The USS Jackson will be home ported at Naval Base San Diego.
A crowd of more than 2,000 people are expected to attend the USS Jackson’s commissioning ceremony.

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