USS John Hancock (DD-981)
USS JOHN HANCOCK (DD 981) was commissioned in March 1979 as the 19th in a series of 31 SPRUANCE Class destroyers. Designed and built by Litton Industries, Ingalls Shipbuilding Division in Pascagoula, Mississippi, JOHN HANCOCK is the sixth U.S. Navy ship to be named after the first signer of the Declaration of Independence. She claims a proud lineage dating to October 1775 and the U.S. Navy's birth, spanning the advancements from a converted sailing schooner during the American Revolution, to an aircraft carrier (CV 19) fighting its way across the Pacific during World War II, to the modern destroyer which now bears the name.
JOHN HANCOCK was developed and built to protect and maintain America's strength on the world's oceans through this decade and well into the next century. A highly versatile, multi-mission destroyer, JOHN HANCOCK can operate independently or in company with aircraft carrier battle groups or amphibious task forces.
Designed primarily for anti-submarine warfare, a 1990 overhaul added the SQQ-89 Towed Array SONAR System, facilities for a SH-60B LAMPS III Helicopter, and a Vertical Launch System (VLS) for launching a variety of missiles. Now, in addition to having state-of-the-art equipment for submarine prosecution, she can deploy both the anti-ship and land-attack versions of the Tomahawk Cruise Missiles that achieved fame during DESERT STORM. Two 5"/54 guns, two torpedo mounts, Harpoon Anti-Ship Missiles, NATO Sea Sparrow defensive Missiles, and other weapon systems, provide additional punch to this ship's arsenal. Modern electronic computers instantly provide data to coordinate the many combat systems that fulfill JOHN HANCOCK's role in the battle group. Four marine gas turbine engines and twin, reversible-pitch propellers give the ship its exceptional maneuverability. However, the technology inside this vessel, alone, is a shallow measure of its capabilities. John Hancock's contemporary, John Paul Jones said, "Men mean more than guns in the rating of a ship." Indeed, it is the total commitment to excellence made by JOHN HANCOCK's crew of professional Sailors and airmen that makes this one of the most powerful warships in the world.
Posted by Michael Perry
Jul 10 2002 09:09:52:000PM