USS Howard (DDG-83)

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For other ships of the same name, see USS Howard.
USS Howard DDG-83.jpg
USS Howard in the South China Sea.
United States
Name: USS Howard
Namesake: Jimmie E. Howard
Ordered: 20 June 1996
Builder: Bath Iron Works
Laid down: 9 December 1998
Launched: 20 November 1999
Commissioned: 20 October 2001
Homeport: Naval Base San Diego
Motto: Ready for Victory
Status: in active service, as of 2015
Badge: USS Howard DDG-83 Crest.png
General characteristics
Class & type: Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
Displacement: 9,200 tons
Length: 509 ft 6 in (155.30 m)
Beam: 66 ft (20 m)
Draft: 31 ft (9.4 m)
Propulsion: 4 × General Electric LM2500-30 gas turbines, 2 shafts, 100,000 shp (75 MW)
Speed: exceeds 30 knots (56 km/h; 35 mph)
Complement: 320 officers and enlisted
Aircraft carried: 2 × SH-60 Sea Hawk helicopters

USS Howard (DDG-83) is the thirty-third Arleigh Burke-class destroyer in the United States Navy and the nineteenth built at Bath Iron Works. Her keel was laid down 9 December 1998, and she was launched and christened 20 November 1999 and commissioned 20 October 2001.

The ship is named in honor of First Sgt. Jimmie E. Howard, USMC, (1929–1993), recipient of the Medal of Honor for his leadership of a platoon against repeated attacks by a battalion-sized Viet Cong force. After receiving severe wounds from an enemy grenade, he distributed ammunition to his men and directed air strikes on the enemy. By dawn, his beleaguered platoon still held their position. Howard had also received the Silver Star Medal for his service in the Korean War. Every time Howard sets to sea from its homeport of San Diego, it passes within view of Gunnery Sgt. Howard's grave at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery and salutes its namesake.

Service history[edit]

On 16 February 2007, Howard was awarded the 2006 Battle "E" award.[1]

On 28 September 2008, Howard was reported to be in pursuit of the Ukrainian ship Faina, which on 25 September 2008 was captured by Somali pirates en route to Kenya. Faina was reported to be carrying 33 Russian-built T-72 tanks along with ammunition and spare parts.[2] Faina was eventually released by the pirates 5 February 2009.

In 2008, Howard received the 2008 Arleigh Burke Fleet Trophy Award and provided humanitarian assistance to the Philippines.[3]

CDR John J Fay is the ninth Commanding Officer, assuming command on 1 May 2014. CDR David Zook was the eighth commanding officer, relieving CDR Bergmann on 21 September 2012. CDR Andree (Ande) E. Bergmann replaced CDR Scott Switzer on 17 March 2011 as the seventh commanding officer. Scott Switzer was the sixth commanding officer of Howard, replacing CDR Curtis Goodnight on 8 May 2009 during a ceremony at San Diego.[3] Capt. Joseph Nolan, USN was the first Commanding Officer of Howard.

Until its disbandment in 2011, the ship was part of Carrier Strike Group Seven. Howard is now a member of Destroyer Squadron 23 and Carrier Strike Group Eleven.


The ships Coat of Arms is a simple one, it shows two red sparks signifying the ships readiness in combat, as well as two ships of the same name, honoring two different people, the blue diamond with the five stars is the crest of the First Marine Division, of which namesake First Sgt. Jimmie E. Howard was a member, the light blue square with the 13 stars signifies Howard being awarded the Medal of Honor for actions in Vietnam, the gold crossed swords are Marine non-commissioned officer swords, recalling Howard's rank in the Marine Corps. (Staff Sargent at the time of his service in Vietnam). The six light blue stars signify the six highest awards held by SSgt Howard, the Medal of Honor, Silver Star, Two Purple Hearts, and the Navy Unit Commendation, and the dragon on the blue field signifies SSgt Howard's service in Vietnam, the ships motto, "Ready For Victory", appears in bold black letters at the bottom.


Howard has been awarded the Navy Battle "E" several times

  • 1 January - 31 December 2006 [1]


  1. ^ a b Ludwick, Paula M. (19 February 2007). "Surface Force Ships, Crews Earn Battle "E"" (Press release) (NNS070219-04). United States Navy. Retrieved 16 October 2015. 
  2. ^ "US destroyer watching hijacked ship off Somalia". ABC News. Associated Press. 27 September 2008. 
  3. ^ a b Kelz, Jessica (8 May 2009). "USS Howard Holds Change of Command Ceremony". Navy Compass. [dead link]

This article includes information collected from the Naval Vessel Register, which, as a U.S. government publication, is in the public domain.

External Links[edit]

Official page