USS Jack H. Lucas to be Commissioned at Port Tampa Bay

USS Jack H. Lucas to be Commissioned at Port Tampa Bay

Save the date for October 7th, 2023

Jim McCool
Jim McCool
October 5, 2023

On October 7th, 2023, Port Tampa Bay will be hosting the Naval Commissioning of the USS Jack H. Lucas DDG 125 warship.  The public is now invited to spectate the event.

Ship commissioning is a ceremony of placing a ship into active Naval service. The moment the commissioning pennant is broken at the masthead, a ship becomes a Navy command in her own right, and takes her place alongside the other active ships of the fleet.

The ceremony is considered the most important phase of the life of a Navy ship, and is currently only days away from the commencement.  While the ship is still being constructed in Mississippi, it will be sent to Tampa Bay in the matter of days for the official ceremony.

The ship will be named after Jack H. Lucas, a decorated war veteran.  In 1945, Lucas, serving in the 5th Marine Division, selflessly dove onto a grenade and simultaneously pulled another under his body, saving three of his fellow Marines. Although severely wounded, he survived, recovered, and was the youngest Marine ever to be awarded the Medal of Honor.  Lucas was only a Private First Class at the time.

The ship will be an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, first of the Flight III variants and 75th overall in the class. On September 17th, 2016, the ship was named by Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus.

Tickets to this once-in-a-generation historic event are free to the public, but do require a reservation. To request a ticket and for parking information visit:

Additionally, tours of the ship are available to the public from 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 3 through Friday, Oct. 6, 2023. Tours are given on a first-come, first-serve basis. Participants on the tours are required to bring a valid U.S. ID and no bags or weapons are allowed.

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Jim McCool

Jim McCool

Jim is a graduate of Florida State University where he studied Political Science, Religion and Criminology. He has been a reporter for the Floridian since January of 2021 and will start law school in 2024.

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