The USS Sioux City ready to be launched into the icy waters of the Marinette River near Green Bay, WI. Courtesy Lockheed Martin

The Navy will christen and launch the USS Sioux City, the latest single-hull littoral combat ship, in a ceremony Saturday in Marinette, WI.

The USS Sioux City, designated LCS 11, is the first vessel to be named in honor of the Iowa city.

Adm. Michelle Howard, vice chief of Naval Operations, will serve as principal speaker. Mary Winnefeld, wife of retired Adm. James “Sandy” Winnefeld, will serve as the ship’s sponsor.

After Winnefeld breaks a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow to formally christen the ship, it will be launched sideways into the Marinette River near Green Bay, WI, by builder Lockheed Martin.

“The christening and launch of LCS 11, the future USS Sioux City, marks an important step toward this great warship’s entry into the fleet,” said Ray Mabus, secretary of the Navy. “The hard work and dedication of our nation’s shipbuilders have ensured this ship will serve as a representation of both Sioux City and our Navy and Marine Corps’ ability to deliver presence for decades to come.”

The Navy is building 40 littoral combat ships in two variants, the single-hull Freedom variant and the trimaran-hull Independence. Sixteen of the first 24 ships will be based in San Diego as part of the Navy’s pivot to Asia.

The single-hull version of the ships have come under criticism after the USS Milwaukee broke down on its maiden voyage last month and the USS Fort Worth experienced a problem due to its crew’s failure to follow procedures.

Show comments

Chris Jennewein

Chris Jennewein is Editor & Publisher of Times of San Diego.