On October 22 thousands of people are expected to line the riverfront behind the GM Riverwalk to watch the commissioning of the USS DETROIT.
It promises to be a spectacular day – one made for the history books. This is only the sixth naval ship to be named for the City of Detroit.
As you might guess, mementos of the day are available and you can order them ahead of time at www.ussdetroitwebstore.com. You can pick from t-shirts, hoodies, sweatshirts, caps, videos and other accessories. There are some great things to wear to the commissioning.
Here are a few samples.
You can also pick up this video.
The official licenses distributor is Detroit’s own Unique Expressions. The trademarks are owned by the United States Navy.
“We searched for a Detroit-area supplier of quality, U.S.-made items that would commemorate the historic ship’s commissioning, as well as be desirable items people would wear or display,” said John Peracchio, chair, USS DETROIT Commissioning Committee. “Thanks to local business-woman Beverly Bantom, president & CEO of Unique Expressions – we’ve found that and more.”
A percentage of sale proceeds will go to the “Morale, Welfare, and Recreation Fund” of the United States Navy for the benefit of the men and women Sailors serving on active duty.
“Our company greatly appreciates the opportunity to provide products that commemorate this historic event and represent the ship and its crew,” says Bantom, a native Detroiter. “We’re very proud of our Detroit community and especially proud to offer only USA-made products in the Official Licensed Merchandise Section.”
The USS DETROIT is a Freedom-class littoral combat ship, designed for a variety of missions in coastal waters as well as humanitarian relief missions. She is capable of open ocean operations and the modular design supports interchangeable mission packages. That means the ship can be reconfigured for antisubmarine warfare, mine warfare, or surface warfare missions as-needed.
It is being built at the Lockheed Martin Marinette Marine shipyard in Wisconsin. The ship was christened there on October 18, 2014 by Mrs. Barbara Levin, the ship’s sponsor and wife retired United States Senator Carl Levin.
A previous USS DETROIT (CL 8), a light cruiser, was one of the few ships to get underway during the attack on Pearl Harbor and earned six Battle Stars during WWII. She was moored with the battleship USS MISSOURI during the surrender ceremony in Tokyo Bay in 1945.
The first USS DETROIT was a 12-gun ship built by the British at Malden, Canada, in 1813. It was captured by the U.S. Navy fleet commanded by Master Commandant Oliver Hazard Perry during the Battle of Lake Erie on September 10, 1813. During the battle, the British ship actually carried 19 guns and served as the flagship of Royal Navy Commander Robert Herlot Barclay. Once captured, she was renamed USS DETROIT and kept in service on the Great Lakes until being scrapped in 1815.