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IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Release No: 490-95
September 08, 1995

NAVY TO COMMISSION SUBMARINE

TUCSON (SSN 770) AT NORFOLK, VIRGINIA

The City of Tucson, Arizona will be honored at 11 a.m., Saturday, September 9, 1995, at Naval Station, Norfolk, Virginia, when the Los Angeles Class fast attack submarine named in its honor will be commissioned into the fleet. Tucson (SSN 770) also honors the previous service of a light cruiser (CL 98), which earned a battle star for service in the Pacific during World War II.

Senator Jon L. Kyl of Arizona will be the ceremony's principal speaker. Also attending the ceremony will be Congressman Jim Kolbe of Arizona and Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Installations and Environment Robert B. Pirie, Jr.

Attack submarines, with their inherent stealth, endurance and flexibility, contribute greatly to the U.S. Navy's overall force structure. Submarines are a vital part of the Navy's "Forward ...From the Sea" doctrine, bringing to bear proven shallow water operational capabilities including mine warfare, covert coastal surveillance and intelligence gathering, operations with special forces, and combat search and rescue. Further, the submarine's ability to strike targets at, below and beyond the water's surface makes it a potent asset in the nation's arsenal.

Tucson is the 59th of 62 Los Angeles class submarines authorized by Congress to be built. The ship is equipped with the Tomahawk cruise missile system, giving it a significant land attack and strike capability. Tucson is one of an improved version of the Los Angeles class, having a hardened sail and retractable bow planes for surfacing through the ice during Arctic missions.

Tucson is 360 feet in length, has a beam of 33 feet and displaces approximately 6,900 tons submerged. The ship will carry a crew of 127 Sailors and 14 officers. Commander Duane Martin Baker, Jr., USN, a native of Columbus, Ohio, is the ship's prospective commanding officer.

Media wishing to attend the ceremony should contact Lieutenant Commander Greg Smith or Senior Chief Gary Smith, Public Affairs Office, Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet, Norfolk, Virginia, at (804) 444-4848.

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