Future USS Daniel Inouye comes home

18 November 2021

From MC1 Jess Gray, U.S. Pacific Fleet

The Navy's newest guided-missile destroyer, the future USS Daniel Inouye (DDG 118), and its crew arrived at its new Pearl Harbor homeport, Nov. 18.
The future USS Daniel Inouye (DDG 118) arrives at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.
The future USS Daniel Inouye (DDG 118) sits pierside after arriving at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Nov. 18, 2021. (U.S. Navy/MC2 Aja Bleu Jackson)
The future USS Daniel Inouye (DDG 118) arrives at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.
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The future USS Daniel Inouye (DDG 118) sits pierside after arriving at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Nov. 18, 2021. (U.S. Navy/MC2 Aja Bleu Jackson)
Photo By: MC2 Aja Jackson
VIRIN: 211118-N-XG173-1058
PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii – The Navy's newest guided-missile destroyer, the future USS Daniel Inouye (DDG 118), and its crew arrived at its new home port of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Nov. 18.

Named for the late Senator Daniel K. Inouye, the ship was christened by Inouye’s wife Irene on June 22, 2019, at Bath Iron Works (BIW) in Bath, Maine. On Oct. 4, Daniel Inouye departed BIW and began the 5,000-nautical-mile journey to Pearl Harbor.

“I am incredibly honored to command a ship named after Senator Inouye,” said Cmdr. DonAnn Gilmore, the first commanding officer of Daniel Inouye, "Throughout the sail around, I think the crew represented the courage and service known by the senator.”

Inouye, a Honolulu native, served in the U.S. Army’s 442nd Regimental Combat Team, which was primarily second-generation Japanese-Americans, following the attacks on Pearl Harbor in December of 1941. While battling foreign enemies, Inouye was shot twice and lost his left arm during a grenade blast, all while continuing to lead his troops. Inouye was awarded a Bronze Star, two Purple Hearts and Distinguished Service Cross that was later upgraded to the Medal of Honor for his courageous acts and unwavering dedication to service.

“He was both a World War II war hero and a man dedicated to serving his country,” said Gilmore. “He’s the son of Hawaii.”

After his military service, Inouye continued to serve his country in politics. When Hawaii achieved statehood in 1959, Inouye was elected as its first member of the United States House of Representatives. Three years later, he was elected into the U.S. Senate where he served for nearly 50 years until his death in 2012, the second longest serving senator in U.S. history.

During Daniel Inouye’s transit to Hawaii, the ship made port calls to Newport, Rhode Island; Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia; and Naval Station Mayport, Florida. While at sea, the crew completed the ship's first firearms shoots, missile shoot, underway replenishment and flank speed run, ensuring that the ship and its crew were mission capable prior to arriving.

“If it weren't for these certification events, we could not become an operational ship,” explained Lt. Jazzmine Ennals, training officer of Daniel Inouye. "Not only to Hawaii, but as a naval asset.”

After departing Naval Station Mayport, Daniel Inouye transited the Panama Canal and made a port call in Manzanillo, Mexico for fuel and supplies before heading for the island of Hilo, Hawaii.

Prior to arriving at Pearl Harbor, located on the island of Oahu, the ship's crew manned the rails and sailed through the Hawaiian Islands to pay tribute to the memory and legacy of Inouye and his lengthy career of service to the people of Hawaii. The islands of Hilo and Maui will now recognize Nov. 16 as “Daniel Inouye Day.”

“I’m humbled to lead a crew on a ship named after Senator Inouye,” said Command Master Chief Simeon Yeboah. “This group of Sailors, officers and enlisted personnel, make me proud to bring Daniel Inouye home, back to Hawaii.”

Daniel Inouye is the 69th Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer to be delivered to the Navy, and the first ship to bear her name. The commissioning ceremony coincides with the 80th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor Remembrance Commemoration events.
The future USS Daniel Inouye will be commissioned Wednesday, Dec. 8, 2021 at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii.
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