Monday, July 20, 2009

First Lady to Serve as Ship's Sponsor for U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Stratton

First Lady to Serve as Ship's Sponsor for U.S. Coast Guard Cutter
Stratton; Keel Laying Held for Ship to Honor First Female Commissioned
Officer in USCG

PASCAGOULA, Miss. - July 20, 2009 - As dozens of invited guests
and shipbuilders gathered, Northrop Grumman Corporation (NYSE:NOC)
honored the memory of a Coast Guard pioneer by hosting a keel laying
ceremony for the U.S. Coast Guard National Security Cutter Stratton
(WMSL 752) here today.

Stratton is named in honor of Dorothy C. Stratton (1899-2006),
the U.S. Coast Guard's first female commissioned officer and director
of the SPARS, the United States Coast Guard Women's Reserve, during
World War II.

First Lady Michelle Obama has been designated as the ship's

"I am honored to serve as the ship's sponsor of the United
States Coast Guard cutter Stratton," Mrs. Obama wrote in a letter read
by U.S. Coast Guard Rear Adm. Ronald J. Rabago, assistant commandant
for Acquisition and Chief Acquisition Officer (CAO), during the keel
laying ceremony. "I'm especially pleased that the cutter's namesake is
Capt. Dorothy Stratton, a pioneer in our nation's military history. She
is a source of inspiration for countless women in uniform and for young
women and girls who may one day serve in our nation's armed forces."

"It's a great day to be a shipbuilder," said Irwin F. Edenzon,
vice president and general manager of Northrop Grumman
Shipbuilding-Gulf Coast. "We're honored the First Lady has agreed to be
the sponsor of this great ship and we welcome her as part of our
shipbuilding family."

Stratton is the third of eight National Security Cutters that comprise
the Legend class, the most technologically sophisticated class of ship
in the history of the Coast Guard. With its 418-foot length and 4,300
ton full load displacement, the NSC is the largest of the new
multi-mission cutters.

"We are all pleased and impressed with the dedication of the
men and women of the Coast Guard's Gulf Coast Project Resident Office
and of the Pascagoula shipyard," said Rear Adm.. Rabago.

"Their commitment to excellence in producing the National
Security Cutter class to meet the demands for Coast Guard missions is
truly inspiring. These eight cutters can't come soon enough, as they
will be replacing a very old 378-foot Endurance-class cutters, which
have been in service since the 1960s."

The first NSC, USCGC Bertholf (WMSL 750), has been commissioned
and recently accomplished its first drug interdiction off of the coast
of Guatemala. The second ship, Waesche (WMSL 751) is still under

Powered by a twin propeller combined diesel and gas turbine
power propulsion plant, the NSC is designed to travel at 29 knots
maximum speed. The cutter includes an aft launch and recovery area for
two rigid hull inflatable boats, a flight deck to accommodate a range
of manned and unmanned rotary wing aircrafts, and state-of-the-art
command and control electronics.

Northrop Grumman Corporation is a leading global security
company whose 120,000 employees provide innovative systems, products,
and solutions in aerospace, electronics, information systems,
shipbuilding and technical services to government and commercial
customers worldwide.

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