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AMERICA WILL SAIL AGAIN!

Navy Secretary Donald C. Winter has announced that the new LHA(R) will be named AMERICA. This proud new ship will be designated USS AMERICA LHA-6 and is expected to come on line in 2012. The announcement was made June 27th 2008 during the reunion banquet hosted by the USS AMERICA Carrier Veterans Association in Jacksonville, Florida. Secretary Winter was the guest of honor at the banquet, which was also attended by Radm. Robert Fuller, AMERICA's 10th skipper, General Peter Pace, former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs and his wife Lynne and Miss America 2008, Kirsten Haglund.

In his speech, Secretary Winter reviewed the proud history of USS AMERICA CVA/CV-66 and applauded the patriotism and enthusiasm of AMERICA's former crewmembers. "AMERICA's veterans have much to be proud of and superb performance will always be associated with that name. It is with this extraordinary legacy in mind that I would like to take this opportunity to announce the name of what will be one of our crown jewels of our fleet. And so today, I am proud to announce that LHA-6, our newest assault ship, will carry on the proud legacy of her predecessor and be named AMERICA". Secretary Winter went on to announce that Lynne Pace, wife of General Peter Pace has accepted the invitation to serve as AMERICA's sponsor.

Secretary Winter's announcement successfully ended an almost four year effort by the USS AMERICA Carrier Veterans Association to have the name AMERICA once again sail the high seas. That effort began with the belief that the name AMERICA, above all others, should always be on a U.S. Navy ship. During this effort, we recieved input from many of the CVA membership, asking questions, making suggestions and helping to guide us in the right direction. Your contributions to this cause helped turn an idea into a reality.

Four years from now, we will stand pier side and proudly watch as USS AMERICA LHA-6 is christened knowing that it was our unified effort that made it happen. This, more than anything else, reinforces our belief that together, we can accomplish just about anything, and it is you the membership, that makes the CVA work. The entire USS AMERICA Carrier Veterans Association offers our collective thanks to Secretary Winter for making this happen. We appreciate his patience with us over the years and ultimately, his decision to once again put the name AMERICA on a great Navy ship.

For additional information, please visit the USS America Carrier Veterans Association at http://www.ussamerica.org