PASCAGOULA, MS (WLOX) - Workers at Ingalls Shipbuilding launched the National Security Cutter Midgett on Wednesday. It's the eighth NSC Ingalls has built for the U.S. Coast Guard, and is set to be christened Dec. 9.
"As the National Security Cutter program continues to mature, we are providing our Coast Guard customer the best ships in their fleet," said Ingalls Shipbuilding President Brian Cuccias. "Our shipbuilders know and understand the importance of quality in building these highly capable cutters so the men and women of the Coast Guard can perform their important national security missions."
Midgett was moved to the floating dry dock last week, and the dock was moved away from the pier on Tuesday night. With the assistance of tugboats, Midgett launched off the dock early Wednesday morning.
"We've become very good at building these ships and continue to improve with the incorporation of lessons learned from previous cutters," said Derek Murphy, Ingalls' NSC program manager. "Launch is a much-anticipated and exciting event, but it's still just one step in bringing this cutter to life. Our shipbuilders are ready to get back to work to ensure Midgett is the best NSC to date."
The ship is named to honor John Allen Midgett, who was awarded the Silver Cup by the U.K. Board of Trade in 1918 for the renowned rescue of 42 British sailors aboard the British tanker Mirlo after it was torpedoed by a German U-boat off the coast of North Carolina. He was also awarded the Gold Lifesaving Medal by the U.S. Coast Guard in 1924.
Midgett was a senior enlisted member of the U.S. Lifesaving Service when it merged with the U.S. Lighthouse Service and U.S. Revenue Cutter Service to become today's U.S. Coast Guard.