There are several major steps leading up to the commissioning of each ship in the U.S. Navy, from the Secretary of the Navy selecting the name of each ship to the laying of its keel, christening, sea trials, and eventual commissioning ceremony.
May 22, 2012
The Secretary of the Navy, the Honorable Ray Mabus officially announces that the 66th ARLEIGH BURKE-class destroyer (DDG 116) will be named the USS THOMAS HUDNER in a naming ceremony held on the pier beside USS CONSTITUTION, "Old Ironsides," in the Charlestown Navy Yard in Boston, Massachusetts.
U.S. Navy photo by MCC Sam Shavers, USN
December 5, 2014
During a ceremony at Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine, Captain Thomas Hudner affixed his name to a steel plate that will become the keel plate for the USS THOMAS HUDNER (DDG-116).
November 16, 2015
During a ceremony at Bath Iron Works, Maine, Captain Thomas Hudner gathered with family, friends and officials from Bath Iron Works and the US Navy for the official key laying ceremony for the future USS THOMAS HUDNER (DDG-116). During the ceremony, Barbara Miller, the Ship's Sponsor and wife of former Superintendent of the Naval Academy VADM Michael Miller, welded her initials beneath those of Hudner's onto the keel plate.
May 3, 2016
The USS THOMAS HUDNER Commissioning Committee held a reception on May 3, 2016 at the Boston Harbor Hotel to formally kick-off its fundraising efforts in support of the commissioning festivities in 2018. The event was hosted by Honorary Co-Chairs Nancy and Richard Kelleher. Click here to see more photos from this event.
June 2, 2016
Members of the USS THOMAS HUDNER Commissioning Committee visit the Pre-Commissioning Unit at General Dynamics Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine and present the first copies of Adam Makos' book Devotion: An Epic Story of Heroism, Friendship, and Sacrifice to STGCS Van Hemel and CDR Nathan Scherry. The Commissioning Committee has purchased a copy of Captain Hudner's biography, for each crew member, which they will receive the book when they check in to the pre-commissioning unit in Bath, ME. Each book has been autographed by author Adam Makos. Click here to see more photos from the visit.
March 31, 2017
PCU THOMAS HUDNER (DDG 116) held its mast stepping ceremony at Bath Iron Works. The tradition of placing coins beneath the masts of ships dates back to the earliest days of seafaring. Today, in addition to coins, other items are placed in the mast stepping box to represent the life and character of the ship's namesake. They are often mementos from his or her life and accomplishments Click here to see more photos from this event.
April 1, 2017
PCU THOMAS HUDNER (DDG 116) was christened at General Dynamics Bath Iron Works on Saturday, April 1, 2017. Amid the hundreds who attended this important event were many family members and friends of both the Hudner and Brown families, including some of the men Captain Hudner served with in Korea, and members of the commissioning committee. Also present were many dignitaries and representatives of Bath Iron Works and their subcontractors that worked on building this great ship. Click here to see more photos from the christening.
August 8, 2017
The USS THOMAS HUDNER Commissioning Committee hosted a sunset harbor cruise around Boston Harbor on Tuesday, August 8, 2017 to raise awareness of and support for the upcoming commissioning ceremony in September 2018. It was a wonderful evening with perfect weather for a cruise on the Harbor. Click here to see more photos from the cruise.
September 26, 2017
The USS THOMAS HUDNER Commissioning Committee held an event at Boston Harbor Hotel to mark the one year mark until the planned commissioning ceremony in Boston in late-September 2018. Hosted by Honorary Co-Chair Nancy and Richard Kelleher, the event was attended by members of Hudner family, the Commissioning and Honorary Committees, representatives of the greater Boston business community and other distinguished guests. Click here to see more photos from the event.
June 15, 2018
Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Conversion & Repair (SUPSHIP) Bath accepted delivery of future-USS THOMAS HUDNER on behalf of the US Navy. The Commissioning Committee formally presented the set of flags it had flown over USS CONSTITUTION on December 4, 2017 and by VFA-32, Captain Hudner's former squadron. These flags were the first National Ensign and Jack to be raised over the Ship.