List of U.S. military vessels named after living Americans

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Former president George H. W. Bush views a model of USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77), the aircraft carrier named for him.

The naming of United States Navy vessels for living people was common in early decades of American history, but by World War II, the Navy had firmly established a practice of naming ships for people only after they had died.[1] In 1969, a Navy panel decreed that warships would no longer be named after living persons.[1] That lasted until 1974, when President Richard Nixon announced the naming of an aircraft carrier after United States Representative Carl Vinson.[1] Since then, ships such as the Arleigh Burke, Henry M. Jackson, Bob Hope, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George Bush, and Gabrielle Giffords have been named for people still alive at the time.

The U.S. Navy generally announces the name of a ship some time before it is launched, and well before it is accepted for purchase and commissioned into active service.

List of ships[edit]

The following ships received their names while their namesakes were alive. The list includes several ships whose namesakes died before the ships were commissioned.


George Washington


James Madison


Jimmy Carter and a model of the SSN-23


See also[edit]