Port Tampa Bay is proud to serve as the host facility for the Naval Commissioning of the USS Jack H. Lucas DDG 125 warship in Fall of 2023. In October of this year the public is invited to join our Nation’s military in the U.S. Navy's commissioning of the Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125), welcoming her to the fleet and the crew to duty. The commissioning of a naval vessel is a treasured, historic event and Port Tampa Bay, The Navy League of Tampa as well as the Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125) Commissioning Committee are here to help the public celebrate this momentous event.
The USS Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125) will be an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, first of the Flight III variants and 75th overall in the class. She is named after Captain Jacklyn H. Lucas, recipient of the Medal of Honor. On 17 September 2016, she was named by Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus. Jack H. Lucas was launched 4 June 2021, and christened 26 March 2022. The ship will enter the fleet and be commissioned in October 2023 in Tampa. The ship is named for decorated veteran Jack H. Lucas. On February 20, 1945, 17 year old Private First Class Lucas, serving in the 5th Marine Division, selflessly dove onto a grenade and simultaneously pulled another under his body, saving three of his fellow Marines. Although severely wounded, he survived, recovered, and was the youngest Marine ever to be awarded the Medal of Honor.
The commissioning ceremony is one of the most significant milestones in the life of a U.S. Navy ship and includes a week-long event of festivities for the ship’s crew, the U.S. Navy and the Tampa Bay community. Following the commissioning ceremony, the ship is officially brought to life and becomes part of the U.S. Navy’s official fleet. Port Tampa Bay President & CEO Paul Anderson serves as a co-chair of the Jack H. Lucas (DDG-125) Commissioning Committee along with Skip Witunski, President of the Tampa Bay Navy League and is led by Executive Director Darryl Adams. The committee includes a variety of leaders from Tampa Bay businesses, local veterans and government agencies.
During the commissioning event, thousands of people are expected to attend events in the week leading to the ceremony, on Saturday morning. Tampa will proudly play host to the USS Jack H. Lucas leadership and her crew at a number of events, and there will be plenty of opportunity for the public to participate and see the ship up close.
You can support the effort of the non-profit Jack H. Lucas Commissioning Committee and learn about events open to the public surrounding her commissioning here: http://www.ddg125.org/
Follow the progress of the USS Jack H. Lucas DDG 125 ship’s progress as she prepares for service here: https://www.facebook.com/JHLDDG125?mibextid=LQQJ4d