Shipbuilders watched and cheered today as the Hurricane Hunters from Keesler Air Force Base’s 403rd Wing flew over Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Ingalls Shipbuilding division and Tripoli (LHA 7), to thank the essential workforce continuing to build our nation’s fleet during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The “Hercs for Heroes” flyby featured a WC-130J Super Hercules from the wing’s 53rd Weather Reconnaissance Squadron, known as the Air Force Reserve Hurricane Hunters.
“We salute our shipbuilders as they continue their work in support of our critical mission,” Ingalls President Brian Cuccias said. “Our workforce has shown great strength and determination despite our recent challenges, and they are more prepared and resilient than ever before.”
In recent weeks, Ingalls launched amphibious transport dock LPD 28, started fabrication of amphibious transport dock LPD 30 and destroyer DDG 128, and delivered destroyer DDG 119 to the U.S. Navy. The company was awarded a $1.5 billion contract in April to build LPD 31. Ingalls currently has 10 ships under construction.
“Our work has not stopped, and our need for world-class shipbuilders grows every day,” said George S. Jones, vice president of operations at Ingalls. “We are the largest manufacturing employer in Mississippi and a major contributor to the economic growth of both Mississippi and Alabama.”