The Guided Missile Destroyer The Sullivans (DDG 68) will be
commissioned during an 11 a.m. ceremony on Saturday, April 19,
1997, at Stapleton Pier on Staten Island in New York City.
The Navy will once again honor the memory of George,
Francis, Joseph, Madison, and Albert Sullivan, five brothers from
Waterloo, Iowa, whose legacy was one of the most oft-told stories
of World War II.
The brothers -- whose motto was We stick
together -- stipulated that they be permitted to serve on the
same ship as a condition of their enlistment in the Navy.
February 1942 they were assigned to the cruiser USS Juneau (CL
On Nov. 12, 1942, Juneau fought in the decisive Pacific
theater naval battle of Guadalcanal.
Early the next morning the
ship was hit by a torpedo and was lost, along with most of its
Tragically, all five brothers went down with their ship.
President Roosevelt ordered the Navy Department to name its next
ship in their honor.
The first The Sullivans (DD 537) (1943-
1965) earned nine battle stars in World War II and two in the
The ship is now a museum in Buffalo, N.Y.
Senator Daniel P. Moynihan, New York, is the principal
Mrs. Kelly Sullivan Loughren, granddaughter of Albert
Sullivan, one of the ship's namesakes, is the ship's sponsor.
the time-honored Navy tradition Mrs. Loughren will give the order
to bring our ship to life.
The Sullivans is the 18th of 32 Arleigh Burke Class
destroyers currently authorized by
Aegis destroyers are equipped to conduct a variety of
missions, from peacetime presence and crisis management to sea
control and power projection, in support of the national
The Sullivans will operate with aircraft
carriers and battle groups in
high-threat environments and will also provide essential escort
capabilities to Navy and Marine Corps amphibious forces, combat
logistics ships and convoys.
These multi-missioned ships are equipped with the Navy's
modern Aegis combat weapons system, that combines space-age
communication, radar and weapons technologies in a single
platform for unlimited flexibility while operating
Forward...From the Sea. The ship will carry Standard surface-
to-air missiles and Tomahawk cruise missiles launched from
forward and aft vertical launching systems; two fully automated,
radar-controlled Phalanx close-in weapons systems; Harpoon anti-
ship missiles; one five-inch gun; and electronic warfare systems.
Cmdr. Gerard D. Roncolato, USN, a 1978 graduate of the U.S.
Naval Academy, is The Sullivans commanding officer.
crew of 26 officers, and 315 enlisted personnel, the ship will
join the U.S. Atlantic Fleet and will be homeported in Mayport,
The ship was built by Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine, and
The Sullivans is 505 feet in length, has a waterline beam of 66
feet and displaces approximately 8,500 tons when fully loaded.
Four gas-turbine engines power the ship to speeds of 30 knots.
The Sullivans is the first Bath-built ship designed from the keel
up to accommodate both man and women crew members.
percent of the 341 crew members are women.