PCU Thomas Hudner is shown here at its christening in 2017. (Navy) BATH, Maine — The Navy has accepted delivery of a destroyer named for a naval aviator who crash-landed his plane to try to save a downed pilot in the Korean War.
Medal of Honor recipient Thomas Hudner witnessed the christening of the ship in April 2017 at Maine’s Bath Iron Works and died months later at 93 in his native Massachusetts.
During Friday’s ceremony in Bath, a flag was hoisted that previously flew over Arlington National Cemetery and on the USS Constitution to honor Hudner’s efforts. Hudner failed to save his comrade, Ensign Jesse Brown, but is remembered for his devotion.
A U.S. Navy frigate was named for Brown, the first African-American naval aviator, in 1973. The Hudner will join the fleet when it’s commissioned into service Dec. 1 in Boston. An artist rendering of the next Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Thomas Hudner (DDG 116). The ship is named after Thomas Hudner, a Medal of Honor recipient and former naval aviator. (Lt. Shawn Eklund/Navy illustration)