The USS Arlington at sea.
(Washington, D.C.) – A Milan High School graduate is among the first crew members on a newly commissioned U.S. Navy ship.
The USS Arlington (LPD 24) – named in honor of the 184 victims of the September 11, 2001 attack on the Pentagon – was commissioned during a ceremony this past Saturday in Norfolk, Virginia. The San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock is one of three 9/11 commemorative ships. The other two are the USS New York and the USS Somerset
Navy Hospitalman 2nd Class Brandon Pugh joined up with the Navy soon after graduating from Milan High School in 2003. His first ever on-ship assignment is as the USS Arlington’s Surgical Technician.
“The experience that I have received from bringing the ship to life has been a fulfilling one. I will look back 40 years from now and know that I had a helping hand in laying the foundation for the rest of the ship’s life,” Pugh said.
Pugh said he could remain in service on the Arlington until his projected rotation date in December 2015. The ship itself is expected to remain in service for 40 years.
Steel taken from the Pentagon after the September 11 attacks will be displayed aboard the USS Arlington. Donations are being taken to help raise $80,000 for a 9/11 tribute room on the ship.
More information on the USS Arlington can be found at http://www.ussarlingtonlpd24.org.