General Dynamics NASSCO christens USNS Hershel “Woody” Williams
On Saturday, October 21, General Dynamics NASSCO hosted a christening and naming ceremony for the Navy’s newest Expeditionary Sea Base, the USNS Hershel “Woody” Williams (ESB 4), the company said in its press release.
USNS Hershel “Woody” Williams is the Navy’s second ESB ship. The 784-foot-long ship will serve as a flexible platform to support a variety of missions, including air mine countermeasures, counter-piracy operations, maritime security and humanitarian missions. The ship will provide for accommodations for up to 250 personnel, a 52,000-square-foot flight deck, fuel and equipment storage, and will also support MH-53 and MH-60 helicopters with an option to support MV-22 tilt-rotor aircraft. Currently nearing the end of construction, the ship will be delivered to the U.S. Navy in February 2018.
General Dynamics NASSCO has delivered three ships in the class to the Navy: USNS Montford Point (ESD 1), USNS John Glenn (ESD 2) and USS Lewis B. Puller (ESB 3). USNS Hershel “Woody” Williams (ESB 4) is the fourth ship to be constructed by NASSCO shipbuilders under the program. A fifth ship is currently under construction, with a planned delivery of March 2019, and funding for a sixth ship has passed several Congressional committees.
NASSCO’s facility in San Diego is the only full-service shipyard on the West Coast capable of designing, building, and maintaining large, ocean-going ships. The company maintains a bi-coastal ship maintenance and repair operation with locations in San Diego; Mayport, Florida; Norfolk, Virginia; and Bremerton, Washington.