Dec. 12, 2017 —
Ship sponsor Jazania H. O’Neal christens the ship by breaking a bottle of American sparkling wine on the hull of the Midgett, the eighth national security cutter, in Pascagoula, Mississippi Dec. 9, 2017. To her right are: Brian Cuccias, president of Ingalls Shipbuilding; Jonna Midgette, matron of honor; and Cmdr. Anthony Williams, Midgett’s prospective commanding officer. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Loumania Stewart.
The Coast Guard christened its eighth national security cutter (NSC), Midgett, at Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, Mississippi, Dec. 9.
The cutter is named after the Midgett family, honoring their history of distinguished service in the Coast Guard that continues to this day. More than 200 members of the family have served in the Coast Guard and its predecessor branches since 1874. Seven members of the Midgett family have been awarded Gold Lifesaving Medals, and three members have been awarded Silver Lifesaving Medals.
One member of the Midgett family, Chief Warrant Officer John Allen Midgett Jr., led crewmembers of his lifeboat in heroically rescuing the entire 42-member crew from the British tanker Mirlo after it was torpedoed off the coast of North Carolina in 1918. For his bravery, despite the rough seas and fires from the tanker’s cargo, he was awarded the Gold Lifesaving Medal. The 378-foot high endurance cutter John Midgett (WHEC 726) was named in his honor.
Midgett’s granddaughter, Jazania H. O’Neal, is the ship’s sponsor and performed the honor of breaking a bottle of American sparkling wine across the ship’s bow during the christening ceremony.
The ship was launched Nov. 22, 2017, and is scheduled for delivery in 2019. It will be stationed in Honolulu alongside the seventh NSC, Kimball.
NSCs are replacing the 1960s-era 378-foot high endurance cutters. Each 418-foot NSC is designed to patrol the open ocean in the most demanding maritime environments and serves as a command and control center for complex law enforcement, defense and national security missions. The NSCs displace 4,500 tons with a full load, have a top speed of 12,000 miles and can endure 60- to 90- day patrol cycles. The cutters feature advanced command, control, communication, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment; aviation support facilities; stern cutter boat launch; and long-endurance station keeping.
For more information: National Security Cutter Program page