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PASCAGOULA, Miss., May 17, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Huntington Ingalls Industries' (NYSE:HII) Ingalls Shipbuilding division today authenticated the keel of the company's fifth U.S. Coast Guard National Security Cutter,
James (WMSL 754).
Charlene Benoit, ship sponsor and great-great niece of NSC 5's namesake Joshua James, writes her initials on the steel plate during the keel authentication ceremony at Ingalls Shipbuilding May 17, 2013.
A photo accompanying this release is available at
"Our shipbuilders have done outstanding work to make us more efficient in building this ship, driving the cost down and becoming more competitive," said Ingalls Shipbuilding President Irwin F. Edenzon. "This not only positions us to continue all the way through the current build plan of eight ships, but we're going to see if we can get the Coast Guard interested in four more. We're also going to position ourselves to be the winner of the Offshore Patrol Cutter competition, because we've proven we build great ships here at Ingalls."
The fifth NSC is named for Joshua James, who is credited with saving more than 600 lives along the New England coastline during a nearly 60-year career in the 1800s with the U.S. Life Saving Service. James' great-great-niece, Charlene Benoit is the ship's sponsor, and she authenticated the keel, a maritime tradition signifying the keel of the ship has been "truly and fairly laid." Her initials were welded onto a steel plate by Ingalls welder D.J. Robinson.