Ingalls Shipbuilding on Saturday christened its 13th amphibious ship after Richard M. McCool Jr., a U.S. Navy captain who received the Medal of Honor for rescuing survivors from a sinking destroyer during a a World War II kamikaze attack.
“Today, we reflect on the bravery and heroism of Richard M. McCool Jr. as he embarks on a ship that will carry another generation of brave Sailors and Marines on missions in defense of our freedom,” the President said. ‘Ingalls Shipbuilding, Kari Wilkinson, in a press release.
His rescue efforts took place exactly 77 years to the day the day LPD 29 was named in his honor, the company said.
Under Secretary of the Navy Erik Raven, guest speaker at the christening, said McCool embodied “the spirit of service above self.”
“The Sailors and Marines who will sail on this future ship continue this legacy by following the example of spirit, patriotism and selflessness set by Richard M. McCool Jr.,” Raven said.
The Richard M. McCool Jr. is co-sponsored by Shana McCool and Kate Oja, granddaughters of the ship’s namesake. Together they officially christened the ship by smashing a bottle of sparkling wine on the bow.
“To the Commander and future crew of this ship, may he (the ship) protect you. And in the words of our grandfather, always remember to fight as a unit and not as individuals,” said Shana McCool.