NAVY TO CHRISTEN LAST BALLISTIC MISSILE SUBMARINE, LOUISIANA (SSBN 743), AT GROTON, CONNECTICUT
The last Trident Ballistic Missile Submarine, Louisiana (SSBN
743), will be christened during an 11:30 a.m. ceremony Saturday,
July 27, 1996, at Electric Boat, Groton, Connecticut.
Former Secretary of the Navy Sean O'Keefe, a native of
Louisiana, will be the ceremony's principal speaker. His mother,
Mrs. Patricia O'Keefe, is the ship's sponsor. In
the time-honored Navy tradition, Mrs. O'Keefe will break a bottle
of champagne across the
bow and formally name Louisiana.
Distinguished guests attending the ceremony will include
Sam Gejdenson; General Eugene E. Habiger, Commander in Chief, U.S.
Strategic Command; the Honorable John W. Douglass, Assistant
Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development
and Acquisition); the Honorable H. B. (Hunt) Downer, Jr., Speaker
of Louisiana, House of Representatives; Vice Admiral George R.
Sterner, Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command; Vice Admiral Richard
W. Mies, Commander Submarine Force, U.S. Atlantic Fleet/Commander
Submarine Allied Command Atlantic; Rear Admiral Richard A.
Buchanan, Commander, Submarine Group Two; Rear Admiral Edmund P.
Giambastiani, Jr., Director, Submarine Warfare Division; and Mr.
John Welch, President and Chief Executive Officer, Electric Boat
Named to honor the 18th state in the union, three previous
ships have borne the name Louisiana: a sloop (1812-1821), a
sidewheel steamer (1861-1864), and a battleship (BB 19) (1906-
Louisiana is the last of 18 Ohio Class/Trident ballistic
missile submarines authorized by Congress to be built. As a
principal part of the U.S. defense posture, Louisiana will
provide the nation's most survivable and enduring nuclear strike
capability. Louisiana was designed for extended patrols to carry
out the national objective of strategic deterrence. Once
commissioned, the ship will become part of the nuclear Triad and
under the war fighting control of U.S. Strategic Command.
Louisiana is equipped with the Trident II D-5 missile system. The
armament includes 24 missile tubes for Trident II submarine
launched ballistic missiles and torpedo tubes for MK-48
Following the commissioning in 1997, Louisiana will be
homeported in Kings Bay, Georgia, as part of the Submarine Force,
U.S. Atlantic Fleet. Captain Wil Cooke, a native
of Marion, Alabama, is the prospective Commanding Officer with a
crew of 16 Officers, and 157 Sailors. The ship is 560 feet in
length, has a beam of 42 feet, displaces approximately 18,750
tons submerged and is capable of reaching speeds in excess of 20
For information related to the christening, contact Mr. Mike
Futrell, Vice Chairman, Commissioning Committee, at (504) 928-