Employees at Northrop Grumman have worked for years to build battleships for U.S. military forces. And like most Americans, employees say they were shocked when they heard of planes flying into the World Trade Center towers in New York City last September 11.
Louis Bond, a Northrup Grumman Employee, said, "We were all in the shipyard and news just went through the shipyard fast, but no one could believe what actually happened till you went home and saw it for yourself."
Bond has worked for Ingalls for 29 years. He was on the crew that helped repair the USS Cole and says building the USS New York will be a great honor. And he says adding steel beams from the World Trade Center into the bow of the ship will be a great way to honor September 11 victims.
"With the steel out of the twin towers into this coming up ship, will be fine-will be excellent."
When it's completed, the 684-foot vessel will be equipped to carry a crew of 402 sailors plus up to 800 Marines. The USS New York carries a heavy price tag of 800 million, but shipbuilders believe the actual crew on the ship will pay a much higher price to defend America's freedom.
"It will stand as a reminder to people of what happened."
The shipyard is planning on starting construction by mid-2003.
By Jennifer Holliman