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FFG 40 Halyburton

USS Halyburton (FFG 40) was decommissioned on 6 September 2014 during a ceremony held in Mayport, FL, which capped more than 30 years of naval service.

The keel of the Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate was laid Sept. 26, 1980, at the Todd Pacific Shipyards Co., Seattle Division, Seattle, Washington. She was launched Oct. 13, 1981, and commissioned on Jan. 7, 1984. The crew completed its final deployment June 4.

The ship was named for Pharmacist's Mate 2nd Class William David Halyburton, Jr. (Oct. 2, 1924 - May 10, 1945). He was a native of Canton, North Carolina and a graduate of New Hanover High School in Wilmington. His enrollment at Davidson College, Davidson, North Carolina, where he planned to prepare himself for the ministry, was put aside to enter the United States Navy during World War II.

Petty Officer 2nd Class Halyburton was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroism while serving with the Marine Rifle Company, 2nd Battalion, 5th Marines, 1st Marine Division, during the Battle of Okinawa. He is buried at the National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific in Honolulu, Hawaii.

The ship's crest was designed to represent the heroic action on the Island of Okinawa in World War II for which Pharmicist's Mate Second Class William David Halyburton, Jr. was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor. The Scarlet and gold bars in the shield denote service in a land action with the U.S. Marines; the alternating colors of the bars symbolize the exchange of fire with an opposing force. The heraldic lion rampart in the midst of the field denotes a single act of great courage, i.e., Halyburton placing himself in the line of fire, in complete disregard for his own safety, in order to shield from further harm, and render medical aid to, a fallen Marine, thereby giving his own life in exchange. The lion is blue, the color of the Medal of Honor ribbon, and is strewn with thirteen stars, as is that decoration, the nation's highest. The gold laurel wreath, inverted, is symbolic of the posthumous awards to Pharmicist's Mate Halyburton in addition to the Medal of Honor: The Purple Heart, the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal and the World War II Victory Medal. The anchor and cross denote naval service and the provision of medical care on the battlefield.

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Page last modified: 09-09-2014 01:57:07 ZULU