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WASHINGTON - The Navy will commission its newest guided-missile destroyer, the future USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115), during a 10 a.m. PDT ceremony Saturday, July 29, at Naval Air Station North Island in San Diego.
The future USS Rafael Peralta honors Marine Corps Sgt. Rafael Peralta, who was posthumously awarded the Navy Cross for actions during combat operations in Operation Iraqi Freedom. Peralta is credited with saving the lives of fellow Marines during the second battle of Fallujah in 2004.
Gen. Robert Neller, commandant of the Marine Corps, will deliver the ceremony's principal address. Ms. Rosa Maria Peralta, Sgt. Peralta's mother, serves as the ship's sponsor.
"This commissioning memorializes the life of Sgt. Rafael Peralta and marks the beginning of what will be decades of exceptional service for this ship," said the Honorable Sean Stackley, acting secretary of the Navy. "During Operation Iraqi Freedom, Sgt. Peralta acted heroically and sacrificed himself for his fellow Marines. He was proud to be an American, proud to be a Marine and we are proud to welcome USS Rafael Peralta to the fleet. I have no doubt the men and women who serve aboard Peralta will continue his legacy of service."
Rafael Peralta, the 64th Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, will be able to conduct a variety of operations, from peacetime presence and crisis management to sea control and power projection. Rafael Peralta will be capable of engaging in air, surface and subsurface battles simultaneously and will contain a myriad of offensive and defensive weapons designed to support maritime warfare, including Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD) capabilities.
The ship will be homeported at Naval Base San Diego.
The ceremony can be viewed live on the Navy Live blog.