Keel laying ceremony for the future destroyer USS Jeremiah Denton

According to information published by HII on August 17, 2022, the keel for the future USS Jeremiah Denton (DDG 129), a Flight III Arleigh-Burke class destroyer was ceremonially laid at Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) Ingalls Shipbuilding division.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Keel laying ceremony for the future Flight III Arleigh Burke-class destroyer USS Jeremiah Denton (Picture source: HII)

The ship is named for former Senator Jeremiah Denton, Jr., a Vietnam War veteran who was awarded the Navy Cross for his heroism as a prisoner of war. Following his Navy career, he was elected to the U.S. Senate representing his home state of Alabama in 1980.

The contemporary keel laying ceremony represents the joining together of a ship’s modular components at the land level. The keel is authenticated with the ship sponsors’ initials etched into a ceremonial keel plate as part of the ceremony. Co-sponsors of DDG 129 are the daughters of the namesake, Madeline Denton Doak, and Mary Denton Lewis.

The DDG 51 Flight III upgrade is centered on the AN/SPY-6(V)1 Air and Missile Defense Radar and incorporates upgrades to the electrical power and cooling capacity plus additional associated changes to provide greatly enhanced warfighting capability to the fleet. Flight III is the latest Flight upgrade in the more than 30-year history of the class, building on the proud legacy of Flight I, II, and IIA ships before it.

HII’s Ingalls Shipbuilding is also in production on the future USS Lenah Sutcliffe Higbee (DDG 123), the future USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG 125), the future USS Ted Stevens (DDG 128), and the future USS George M. Neal (DDG 131).

The DDG 51-class guided missile destroyers are warships that provide multi-mission offensive and defensive capabilities. Destroyers can operate independently or as part of Carrier Strike Groups, Surface Action Groups, and Expeditionary Strike Groups.

Guided-missile destroyers are multi-mission surface combatants capable of conducting Anti-Air Warfare (AAW), Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), and Anti-Surface Warfare (ASuW).

The destroyer's armament has greatly expanded the role of the ship in strike warfare utilizing the MK-41 Vertical Launching System (VLS), and, beginning with ships equipped with Aegis Baseline 9, Ballistic Missile Defense (BMD).