The Navy will commission the future USS Minneapolis-Saint Paul (LCS 21) as the newest Freedom-variant littoral combat ship (LCS) during a 10 a.m. CDT ceremony Saturday, May 21, in Duluth, Minnesota.
USS Minneapolis-Saint Paul is the second naval ship to honor Minnesota’s Twin Cities, although each city has been honored twice before.
The principal speaker is U.S. Rep. Betty McCollum of Minnesota’s 4th District. Additional speakers include Governor Tim Walz of Minnesota; U.S. Sen. Amy Klobuchar of Minnesota; U.S. Rep. Pete Stauber of Minnesota’s 8th District; Under Secretary of the Navy Erik Raven; Vice Adm. Scott Conn, deputy chief of naval operations for warfighting requirements and capabilities; and Mr. Jon Rambeau, vice president and general manager, Lockheed Martin Integrated Warfare Systems and Sensors. The ship’s sponsor is Ms. Jodi Greene, principle at the Mabus Group and former deputy under secretary of the Navy for policy. She will give the first order to “man our ship and bring her to life.”
“It is fitting that a littoral combat ship is named for Minneapolis-Saint Paul, honoring the rich history, hard work, and contributions of the people there,” said Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro. “I am certain the crew who will man this ship will carry on the legacy of the ‘Twin Cities’ and will play an important role in the defense of our nation and maritime freedom.”
The first U.S. Navy warship named Minneapolis-Saint Paul was a Los Angeles-class submarine launched in 1983 that participated in Operation Desert Shield/Desert Storm. USS Minneapolis-Saint Paul (SSN 708) was the first submarine to carry Tomahawk missiles specifically designed for use in strikes against Iraq during the Gulf War. Having served for over two decades with distinction, the Navy decommissioned the submarine in 2007.
Littoral Combat Ships are a fast, agile, mission-focused platform designed to operate in near-shore environments, winning against 21st-century coastal threats. The LCS is capable of supporting forward presence, maritime security, sea control, and deterrence.
USS Minneapolis-Saint Paul will homeport at Naval Station Mayport, Florida.
The ceremony will be live-streamed at USS Minneapolis-Saint Paul Commissioning. The link becomes active approximately ten minutes before the event (9:50 a.m. CST).