Guided Missile Destroyer

DDG 77  -  USS O’Kane

 

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane patch crest insignia

DDG-77 USS O'Kane Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyer AEGIS

Type, Class:

 

Guided Missile Destroyer; Arleigh Burke - class / Flight II;

planned and built as DDG 77

Builder:

 

Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine, USA

STATUS:

 

Awarded: July 20, 1994

Laid down: May 8, 1997

Launched: March 28, 1998

Commissioned: October 23, 1999

ACTIVE UNIT/ in commission (Pacific Fleet)

Homeport:

 

Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, USA

Namesake:

 

Named after and in honor of Rear Admiral Richard Hetherington O’Kane (1911 - 1994)

> see history, below;

Ship's Motto:

 

A TRADITION OF HONOR

Technical Data:

(Measures, Propulsion,

Armament, Aviation, etc.)

 

see: INFO > Arleigh Burke - class Guided Missile Destroyer

 

ship images

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane - Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyer AEGIS

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

USS O'Kane DDG-77

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

USS O'Kane DDG-77 Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyer AEGIS

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

USS O'Kane DDG-77

 

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DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

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DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

USS O'Kane DDG-77

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

USS O'Kane DDG-77 Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyer AEGIS

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane fires a Standard Missile from her Mk-41 VLS

 

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USS O'Kane DDG-77

 

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USS O'Kane DDG-77

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane Arleigh Burke class guided missile destroyer AEGIS

 

 

Richard Hetherington O’Kane

 

Richard Hetherington O'Kane, US Navy   Rear Admiral Richard Hetherington O'Kane, US Navy

 

Lieutenant Commander Richard Hetherington O'Kane US Navy

LCDR Richard H. O’Kane (center) aboard USS Tang (SS-306) - May 1944

 

Commander Rear Admiral Richard Hetherington O'Kane US Navy with President Harry S. Truman Medal of Honor

Commander Richard H. O’Kane received the Medal of Honor from President Harry S. Truman - March 27, 1946

 

 

Namesake & History:

Rear Admiral Richard Hetherington O’Kane (February 2, 1911 – February 16, 1994):

 

Richard Hetherington O'Kane was born in Dover, New Hampshire, on 2 February 1911. He graduated from the U.S. Naval Academy in May 1934 and spent his first years of active duty in the cruiser Chester and destroyer Pruitt. He received submarine instruction in 1938 and was then assigned to USS Argonaut until 1942. Lieutenant O'Kane then joined the precommissioning crew of the new submarine Wahoo, serving as her Executive Officer under Commanding Officer Dudley W. Morton and establishing a record as a very promising tactician.

In July 1943, Lieutenant Commander O'Kane was detached from Wahoo and soon became Prospective Commanding Officer of USS Tang, which was then under construction. He placed her in commission in October 1943 and commanded her through her entire career. In five war patrols, O'Kane and Tang sank an officially recognized total of 24 Japanese ships, establishing one of the Pacific War's top records for submarine achievement. He was captured by the Japanese when his ship was accidently sunk off China during the night of 24-25 October 1944 and was secretly held prisoner until the war's end some ten months later. Following his release, Commander O'Kane was awarded the Medal of Honor for his "conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity" during his submarine's final operations against Japanese shipping.

In the years following World War II, Commander O'Kane served with the Pacific Reserve Fleet as Commanding Officer of the submarine tender Pelias, testified at Japanese war crimes trials, was Executive Officer of the submarine tender Nereus and was Commander Submarine Division Thirty-Two. He was a student at the Armed Forces Staff College in 1950-51 and was subsequently assigned to the Submarine School at New London, Connecticut, initially as an instructor and, in 1952-53, as Officer in Charge.

Promoted to the rank of Captain in July 1953, O'Kane commanded the submarine tender Sperry until June 1954 and then became Commander Submarine Squadron Seven. Following studies at the Naval War College in 1955-56, he served in Washington, D.C., with the Ship Characteristics Board. Captain O'Kane retired from active duty in July 1957 and, on the basis of his extensive combat awards, was simultaneously advanced to the rank of Rear Admiral on the Retired List. Richard H. O'Kane died on 16 February 1994.



Medal of Honor citation:

Rank and organization: Commander, United States Navy, commanding U.S.S. Tang. Place and date: Vicinity Philippine Islands, October 23, and October 24, 1944. Entered service at: New Hampshire. Born: February 2, 1911, Dover, N.H.

Citation:
For conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity at the risk of his life above and beyond the call of duty as commanding officer of the U.S.S. Tang operating against 2 enemy Japanese convoys on 23 October and 24 October 1944, during her fifth and last war patrol. Boldly maneuvering on the surface into the midst of a heavily escorted convoy, Comdr. O'Kane stood in the fusillade of bullets and shells from all directions to launch smashing hits on 3 tankers, coolly swung his ship to fire at a freighter and, in a split-second decision, shot out of the path of an onrushing transport, missing it by inches. Boxed in by blazing tankers, a freighter, transport, and several destroyers, he blasted 2 of the targets with his remaining torpedoes and, with pyrotechnics bursting on all sides, cleared the area. Twenty-four hours later, he again made contact with a heavily escorted convoy steaming to support the Leyte campaign with reinforcements and supplies and with crated planes piled high on each unit. In defiance of the enemy's relentless fire, he closed the concentration of ship and in quick succession sent 2 torpedoes each into the first and second transports and an adjacent tanker, finding his mark with each torpedo in a series of violent explosions at less than 1,000-yard range. With ships bearing down from all sides, he charged the enemy at high speed, exploding the tanker in a burst of flame, smashing the transport dead in the water, and blasting the destroyer with a mighty roar which rocked the Tang from stem to stern. Expending his last 2 torpedoes into the remnants of a once powerful convoy before his own ship went down, Comdr. O'Kane, aided by his gallant command, achieved an illustrious record of heroism in combat, enhancing the finest traditions of the U.S. Naval Service.

 

USS O’Kane (DDG 77):

 

-- DDG 77 history wanted --

 

patches

 

DDG-77 USS O'Kane patch crest insignia   USS O'Kane DDG-77 crest insignia patch   DDG-77 USS O'Kane insignia patch crest

 

USS O'Kane DDG-77 patch crest insignia   DDG-77 USS O'Kane crest insignia patch   USS O'Kane DDG-77 insignia crest patch

 

 

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