A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

Navy Secretary Mabus honors Marinette’s Wisconsin, Michigan workers by naming next two LCS Milwaukee, Detroit


file During a visit to Marinette Marine, Navy Secretary Ray Mabus, right, announced the next two Littoral Combat Ships made by the Lockheed Martin-led team would be the USS Milwaukee and USS Detroit. Also pictured are Michigan Sen. Carl Levin, left, and Marinette Marine CEO Richard McCreary.

As the crow flies, Milwaukee stands 252 miles from Detroit, but in U.S. Navy Secretary Ray Mabus’ eyes, the two are right next to each other.

Secretary Mabus isn’t geographically challenged, though. During a March 18 visit to the Marinette Marine shipyard in northeast Wisconsin, he unveiled the names of the next two Littoral Combat Ships (LCS) to be built by the Lockheed Martin-led team – the future USS Milwaukee (LCS 5) and the USS Detroit (LCS 7).


The naming announcement followed the Navy’s previous day award of a $376 million contact to the Lockheed Martin-led team for LCS 7’s construction. In December, the Navy selected Lockheed Martin and a second industry team to each construct 10 LCS through 2015, including LCS 5.

"These (LCS) are going to be the backbone of the U.S. Navy for the next few decades," said Secretary Mabus as he stood in front of LCS 3, the Fort Worth. "These ships, with their shallow draft and their speed, are going to be a game-changer for us to do things that no other navy can do.”

The Lockheed Martin team has already kicked off the initial steps for Milwaukee’s construction, including placing key orders for long-lead materials and arranging subcontractors. With the Navy’s latest contract award, the team will follow a similar pattern for Detroit.

"You've got workers from Michigan and Wisconsin and I wanted to do something to honor them," the Secretary said to an audience of more than 100 shipyard workers and Marinette Marine and Lockheed Martin executives. Wisconsin Senator Herb Kohl and Michigan Senator Carl Levin joined the Secretary at Marinette Marine, located on the border between the two states.
LCS 3 is more than 85 percent complete and was christened and launched in December 2010 – a milestone reached just 20 months after contract award. The ship remains on schedule and on budget for delivery to the Navy in 2012.

Additional news coverage of Secretary Mabus’ visit to Marinette Marine: