U.S. Secretary of The Navy Announces DDG 116 to be Named Thomas Hudner

Sec­re­tary of the Navy Ray Mabus announced today the next Arleigh Burke class guid­ed-mis­sile destroy­er (DDG) will be named the USS Thomas Hud­ner.

Thomas J. Hud­ner Jr., a naval avi­a­tor who retired as a cap­tain, received the Medal of Hon­or from Pres­i­dent Har­ry S. Tru­man for dis­play­ing uncom­mon val­or dur­ing an attack on his wing­man, the first African Amer­i­can naval avi­a­tor to fly in com­bat, Ensign Jesse L. Brown. Dur­ing the Bat­tle of Chosin Reser­voir in the Kore­an War, anti-air­craft fire hit Brown’s air­craft, dam­ag­ing a fuel line and caus­ing him to crash. After it became clear Brown was seri­ous­ly injured and unable to free him­self Hud­ner pro­ceed­ed to pur­pose­ful­ly crash his own air­craft to join Brown and pro­vide aid. Hud­ner injured his own back dur­ing his crash land­ing, but he stayed with Brown until a res­cue heli­copter arrived. Hud­ner and the res­cue pilot worked in the sub-zero, snow-laden area in an unsuc­cess­ful attempt to free Brown from the smok­ing wreck­age.

Hud­ner is the last liv­ing Navy recip­i­ent of the Medal of Hon­or from the Kore­an War.

After receiv­ing recog­ni­tion for his hero­ism, Hud­ner remained on active duty, com­plet­ing an addi­tion­al 22 years of naval ser­vice dur­ing which his accom­plish­ments include fly­ing 27 com­bat mis­sions in the Kore­an War and serv­ing as the exec­u­tive offi­cer aboard the USS Kit­ty Hawk dur­ing the Viet­nam War.

“Thomas Hud­ner exem­pli­fies the core val­ues of hon­or, courage and com­mit­ment the Navy holds dear,” said Mabus. “Nam­ing the Navy’s next DDG for him will ensure his lega­cy will be known, hon­ored and emu­lat­ed by future gen­er­a­tions of sailors and Marines who serve and all who come in con­tact with this ship.”

The Arleigh Burke class destroy­er will be able to con­duct a vari­ety of oper­a­tions, from peace­time pres­ence and cri­sis man­age­ment to sea con­trol and pow­er pro­jec­tion. It will be capa­ble of fight­ing air, sur­face and sub­sur­face bat­tles simul­ta­ne­ous­ly and will con­tain a myr­i­ad of offen­sive and defen­sive weapons designed to sup­port mar­itime war­fare in keep­ing with the Navy’s abil­i­ty to exe­cute the Depart­ment of Defense’s defense strat­e­gy.

Media may direct queries to the Navy Office of Infor­ma­tion at 703- 697‑5342.

For more news from sec­re­tary of the Navy pub­lic affairs, vis­it http://www.navy.mil/SECNAV .

For more infor­ma­tion about the Arleigh Burke class destroy­ers please vis­it http://www.navy.mil/navydata/fact_display.asp?cid=4200&tid=900&ct=4 .

U.S. Depart­ment of Defense
Office of the Assis­tant Sec­re­tary of Defense (Pub­lic Affairs)