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November 1, 2004

A Fine Navy Day

Guided missile destroyer USS HOWARD (DDG 83), left, and fast combat support ship USNS Rainier (T-AOE 7) cruise in formation in WESTPAC

US Navy photo at Navy Newstand Gallery

Guided missile destroyer USS HOWARD (DDG 83), left, and fast combat support ship USNS Rainier (T-AOE 7) cruise in formation in WESTPAC

South China Sea (Sept. 17, 2004) - Guided missile destroyer USS HOWARD (DDG 83), left, and fast combat support ship USNS Rainier (T-AOE 7) cruise in formation behind the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74). Howard and Rainier is part of the Stennis Carrier Strike Group (CSG) currently [in September 2004] participating in a scheduled deployment to the Western Pacific Ocean. U.S. Navy photo by Photographer's Mate 3rd Class Mark J. Rebilas (RELEASED)

USS HOWARD (DDG-83) honors Viet Nam War hero GYSGT Jimmie E. Howard, USMC. His Medal of Honor citation reads:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his own life above and beyond the call of duty.  G/Sgt. Howard and his 18-man platoon were occupying an observation post deep within enemy-controlled territory.  Shortly after midnight a Viet Cong force of estimated battalion size approached the Marines' position and launched a vicious attack with small arms, automatic weapons, and mortar fire.  Reacting swiftly and fearlessly in the face of the overwhelming odds, G/Sgt. Howard skillfully organized his small but determined force into a tight perimeter defense and calmly moved from position to position to direct his men's fire.  Throughout the night, during assault after assault, his courageous example and firm leadership inspired and motivated his men to withstand the unrelenting fury of the hostile fire in the seemingly hopeless situation.  He constantly shouted encouragement to his men and exhibited imagination and resourcefulness in directing their return fire.  When fragments of an exploding enemy grenade wounded him severely and prevented him from moving his legs, he distributed his ammunition to the remaining members of his platoon and proceeded to maintain radio communications and direct air strikes on the enemy with uncanny accuracy.  At dawn, despite the fact that 5 men were killed and all but 1 wounded, his beleaguered platoon was still in command of its position.  When evacuation helicopters approached his position, G/Sgt. Howard warned them away and called for additional air strikes and directed devastating small-arms fire and air strikes against enemy automatic weapons positions in order to make the landing zone as secure as possible.  Through his extraordinary courage and resolute fighting spirit, G/Sgt. Howard was largely responsible for preventing the loss of his entire platoon.  His valiant leadership and courageous fighting spirit served to inspire the men of his platoon to heroic endeavor in the face of overwhelming odds, and reflect the highest credit upon G/Sgt. Howard, the Marine Corps, and the U.S. Naval Service

When I worked for the US Navy's AEGIS Program Office I was helping to build ships such as the USS HOWARD (DDG-83). I am proud of my contribution to our Navy. And that evening, in this photo looks like it must have been a Fine Navy Day

Source: Official US Navy Newstand Eye on the Fleet Photo Gallery (Destroyers)

Posted by niganit at November 1, 2004 5:51 PM
More like this: A Bit Off Topic | Inspirational


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