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PHOTO RELEASE -- Adm. Papp, U.S. Rep. Palazzo Praise National Security Program At Christening Of Hamilton (WMSL 753)

NSCs are 418 feet long with a 54-foot beam and displace 4,500 tons with a full load. They have a top speed of 28 knots, a range of 12,000 miles, an endurance of 60 days and a crew of 110.

"In the past decade, we've added to our 75-year legacy by building the most capable Coast Guard cutters in the world for the most capable Coast Guard in the world," said Ingalls Shipbuilding President Irwin F. Edenzon. "We understand these great ships must be affordable. And the Coast Guard's management of the NSC program has helped. Stable funding, timely contract negotiations and a disciplined appetite for change allow us to get learning from ship to ship. It gives both us and the Coast Guard the best opportunity to achieve our mutual objective: to keep building NSCs at an affordable price so we can build more NSCs. And not only do our shipbuilders know that the ships we build have to be affordable, they know who serves in them: Coast Guard men and women, sailors and Marines who are our friends, our neighbors, our sons, daughters, nieces and nephews—America's heroes."

U.S. Rep. Steven Palazzo (R-Miss.) also took part in the ceremony. "Huntington Ingalls is more than a business, it is a family," he said. "A family 75 years old with a firm legacy and a robust future. As south Mississippians, shipbuilding is a part of our family and will remain the cornerstone of our community and the strength of our country.

"Whether it is drug interdiction, counterterrorism or our Homeland Security missions, this ship will be one of the greatest tools in our nation's tool kit for the protection of our homeland and the safety of our citizens," Palazzo added. "Simply put, these ships are essential in maintaining the safety and security of our nation, and most of all, these ships are responsible for returning the men and women of the Coast Guard safely to their families, a mission that none of us take lightly."

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