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DDG 111 Spruance

Secretary of the Navy Donald C. Winter announced 16 May 2007 DDG hull number 111 will be named the USS Spruance to honor Adm. Raymond A. Spruance, whose calm and decisive leadership in command of Task Force 16 at the Battle of Midway contributed to the pivotal American victory. The USS Spruance will provide dynamic multi-mission platforms to lead the Navy into the future. Using a gas turbine propulsion system the ship can operate independently or as part of carrier battle groups, surface action groups, amphibious ready groups, and underway replenishment groups. Combat systems center around the Aegis combat system and the SPY-lD, multi-function phased array radar. The combination of Aegis, the Vertical Launching System, an advanced anti-submarine warfare system, advanced anti-aircraft missiles and Tomahawk, the Arleigh Burke-class continues the revolution at sea.

Adm. Raymond A. Spruance

Spruance was born in Baltimore, on July 3, 1886. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in 1906.. His career was extensive, including command of five destroyers and the battleship Mississippi. In the first months of World War II in the Pacific,. Spruance commanded a cruiser division. He led Task Force 16, with two aircraft carriers, during the Battle of Midway. Spruance's disposition of forces and management of available aircraft proved to be brilliant. His decisions during that action were important to its outcome, which changed the course of the war with Japan.

After the Battle of Midway, he became chief of staff to the commander in chief, U.S. Pacific Fleet and Pacific Ocean Areas and later was deputy commander in chief. In mid-1943, he was given command of the Central Pacific Force, which became the Fifth Fleet in April 1944. While holding that command in 1943-45, with the USS Indianapolis (CA-35) as his usual flagship, Spruance directed the campaigns that captured the Gilberts, Marshalls, Marianas, Iwo Jima and Okinawa and defeated the Japanese fleet in the June 1944 Battle of Philippine Sea.

Spruance held command of the Pacific Fleet in late 1945 and early 1946. He then served as president of the Naval War College until retiring from the Navy in July 1948. In 1952-55, he was ambassador to the Philippines. Spruance died at Pebble Beach, Calif., on Dec. 13, 1969.

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Page last modified: 18-07-2013 19:22:54 ZULU