Navy christens, launches 1st ship named for Billings
BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — The Navy has christened and launched a new ship named for Billings, Montana’s largest city.
The Billings Gazette reports (http://bit.ly/2uwymyd ) the USS Billings was christened Saturday at a shipyard in Marinette, Wisconsin.
Sharla Tester, who is married to Sen. Jon Tester, D-Montana, broke the ceremonial bottle of champagne over the ship’s bow before it slid into Lake Michigan.
It’s the first Navy ship to bear the name.
The Billings is a littoral combat ship with three major missions: finding and disarming mines, defending against attacks by small boats and fighting submarines.
The ship is about 83 percent finished and is scheduled to be handed over to the Navy in 2018.
Billings Mayor Tom Hanel and City Council members Al Swanson, Chris Friedel and Ryan Sullivan also attended the christening.
Information from: The Billings Gazette, http://www.billingsgazette.com