Sailors salute during the commissioning of the USS America. Navy photo

The amphibious assault ship USS America will render the Navy’s traditional 21-gun salute to Independence Day in San Diego beginning at noon on Thursday.

Guns will fire a volley every minute from the flight deck of the ship until 12:21 p.m to honor fallen military men and women. The shots may be heard throughout the South Bay.

The America, which is one of the biggest warships at Naval Base San Diego, will display its largest ensign and signal flags along its masthead in a tradition known as “full dress ship.”

Every year the Navy designates one ship in San Diego to host the salute, and it’s usually an amphibious assault ship, which is a small aircraft carrier that launches helicopters, tiltrotors and vertical-takeoff jets to support a Marine landing.

“It is an honor to render this salute to our fallen Sailors,” said a spokesperson for Naval Base San Diego.

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Chris Jennewein

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