Friday, June 27, 2014

USS DETROIT LEADERSHIP TEAM VISITS DETROIT


We were pleased to welcome CDR Michael Wohnhaas, PCO, USS DETROIT (LCS 7), and his leadersip team back to Michigan on June 9 and 10.  Joining him for this visit was LCDR Christopher Farricker, Executive Officer and MACS Travis Winfield, Command Master Chief.  They were able to schedule the visit prior to heading to Marinette, Wis. to attend the quarterly Shipbuilding Production Progress Conference.  

We scheduled a full day of activity in Detroit on June 9 and in Lansing on June 10.  Mrs. Barbara Levin was able to join us on June 9 for a number of events.  John Percchio, Jerry Moskwa and I served as hosts for our visitors.

COMMAND TEAM VISIT (Left to right:) Jerry Moskwa, MACS Winfield,
John Peracchio, John McCandless, Barbara Levin, LCDR Farricker and CDR Wohnhaas.

We started June 9 with a breakfast at the Detroit Athletic Club with Nolan Finlay, Editorial Page Editor of THE DETROIT NEWS.  Later, CDR Wohnhaas did a 10 minute interview with WJR’s Frank Beckmann.  Next, Thom Connors, Regional VP and General Manager, Cobo Center, provided a special tour of the new Grand River Ballroom in Cobo Arena, which we plan to use for Commissioning Week events.  

While at Cobo, Jim Carlisle, CEO of Camlogic, presented the Commander with a miniature version of The Spirit of Detroit iconic sculpture.  Carlisle’s firm laser scanned the 26-foot bronze sculpture, then produced 3-D printed miniatures for the RAPID Conference taking place that week. 

We met with Jay Farner, President and Chief Marketing Officer, Quicken Loans and our Honorary Chairman of our USS DETROIT BLUE & GOLD COMMITTEE and Leslie Andrews, Director, Community Relations and Corporate Partnerships.  From there, we toured Port Detroit and concluded the day with a visit to Naval Recruiting District headquarters and a visit with members of the Navy Recruiting Assistance Committee.

On Tuesday, we spent the day in Lansing and East Lansing, starting with being introduced on the Senate Floor by State Senator Patrick Colbeck.  We visited the House, where CDR Wohnhaas was introduced and welcomed by State Representative Nancy Jenkins.  We also met with Jeff Barnes, Director, Michigan Veterans Affairs Agency and Lindell Holm, Director, Michigan Veterans Trust Fund.

CAPT Ken Beachler, USN (Ret), arranged for a special tours of the Michigan State University Skandalaris Football Center and practice fields, where we were warmly greeted by many of the coaches.  Hosted by Jeff Barnes of the MSU Sports Information Staff, we also toured the MSU Stadium press box.  Finally, our guests were provided a special backstage tour of Wharton Center, only hours before the opening of The Book of Mormans.

We expect to hear soon on the date of the launching and christening of USS DETROIT, tentatively slated for a Saturday this coming September or October.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

USS DETROIT CREST UNVEILED IN DUAL CEREMONIES IN DETROIT AND SAN DIEGO


The official crest of the USS DETROIT (LCS 7) was unveiled on Friday, February 21, 2014, at dual ceremonies held in San Diego and Detroit 


“Our crest pays tribute to the great City of Detroit and the ship and crew that bear its name,” Commander Michael Wohnhaas, USN, Prospective Commanding Officer of USS DETROIT (LCS 7) said during ceremonies held at the San Diego Naval Station, the homeport for the ship when she joins the fleet in 2016.  “None of this would be possible without the talents of a number of our First Class Petty Officers, whose ideas will live on in the crest long after we’ve departed for other commands.”

He also delivered similar remarks in a recorded video message to those attending in Detroit and thanked the Metropolitan Detroit Council, Navy League of the United States for the support he and his crew had already received. The ceremony held at Port Detroit was attended by Detroit news media and special guests.  Participants in the Detroit unveiling event included:  Mrs. Barbara Levin, the ship’s sponsor; Jay Farner, President and Chief Marketing Officer, Quicken Loans, Inc., and Honorary Chairman of the Navy League’s USS DETROIT (LCS 7) BLUE & GOLD COMMITTEE; Detroit Deputy Mayor Ike McKinnon; Wayne County Executive Robert Ficano; John Jamian, Executive Director, Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority and John Peracchio, Vice Chairman of the Metropolitan Detroit Council’s USS DETROIT (LCS 7) BLUE & GOLD COMMITTEE. 

The USS DETROIT (LCS 7) BLUE & GOLD COMMITTEE was formed by the Metropolitan Detroit Council, Navy League of the United States, in November 2012, shortly after the keel laying ceremony for the ship at the Lockheed Martin Marinette Shipyard in Marinette, Wis.  The committee is working with CDR Wohnhaas and other Navy officials on a number of projects leading to the ship’s commissioning in 2016.



“The Navy League frequently organizes commissioning ceremonies for the United States Navy,” said John Peracchio, vice chairman of the committee.  “Our Blue & Gold Committee was formed in anticipation that our ship will be commissioned here in 2016.  We’re underway early to support the crew of DETROIT.
“Founded with the support of President Theodore Roosevelt in 1902, the Navy League of the United States has been a powerful voice advocating a strong maritime component to America’s national defense for over a century,” he added.  “Our committee and our Metropolitan Detroit Council is dedicated to supporting the crew of the DETROIT and all the men and women in our Sea Services.”


“We have so many exciting things happening on our Detroit waterfront these days,” said John Jamian, Executive Director, Detroit/Wayne County Port Authority. 


“The naming of the USS DETROIT (LCS 7), as well as Mrs. Levin being selected as the ship’s sponsor, are added feathers in our cap,” Jamian added. 


“We are hopeful and looking forward to the possibility of hosting the commissioning of the USS DETROIT in 2016,” Jamian concluded.



“Detroit has a rich history of maritime activity,” said Ike McKinnon, Deputy Mayor of Detroit.  “Our city and our citizens could not be prouder that we are the namesake for a state of the art ship that undoubtedly will prove as tough and agile and strong as our city.”

“The new USS Detroit reflects the promise, renewal and growth that symbolizes what we see here in Detroit and Wayne County,” said Robert Ficano, Wayne County Executive.  “Sometimes we forget how vital a port is to a community.  It’s quite an honor to have a ship named after Detroit.”
CDR Wohnhaas said that about 60 percent of the ship is now complete, including the helicopter hangar, and that the name “DETROIT” is now proudly displayed on the stern doors.  Control consoles are starting to be installed on the bridge.  At the ship’s training office in San Diego, 27 of his 40 crew members have reported on board.


The ship will be launched this summer and christened USS DETROIT by Mrs. Levin during ceremonies at the Lockheed Martin Marinette (Wisconsin) shipyard.  She will be commissioned in 2016 and then sail to her homeport of San Diego.


Representatives from the offices of Congresswoman Candice S. Miller, Congressman Gary Peters and Senator Debbie Stabenow also attend the ceremony.  Last November, these and other members of the Michigan Congressional delegation co-signed a letter to Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, encouraging him to select Detroit as the commissioning site for the ship.  The member of  Representative Miller’s office read a letter from her during the ceremony.


Times may change but the Navy’s mission will always be to maintain, train and equip combat-ready Naval forces capable of winning wars, deterring aggression and ensuring freedom of the seas,” Miller wrote.   “The DETROIT will prove instrumental in helping the Navy continue to achieve its mission as it evolves to 21st Century warfare.  Similar to the Navy entering a new chapter of its history, so is the City of Detroit.  Detroit has famously faced its own challenges and has a deep history of being able to adapt, adjust and rebuild throughout the years.  It is fitting that this crest unveiling occurs in a city that is going through analogous changes.”


LCS is a fast, agile, focused-mission platform designed for operation in near-shore environments yet capable of open-ocean operation. It is designed to defeat asymmetric “anti-access” threats such as mines, quiet diesel submarines and fast surface craft.



 
John Peracchio
 
Deputy Mayor Ike McKinnon
 
Robert Ficano, Wayne County Executive
 
Jay Farner, President and CMO, Quicken Loans, Inc.
 
Mrs. Barbara Levin
 
Unveiling of the Crest
 
 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

DUAL CEREMONIES HELD FOR UNVEILING OF USS DETROIT CREST

Dual unveiling ceremonies were held on Friday, February 22 in San Diego and Detroit to share the official crest of the USS DETROIT (LCS 7) with the public.