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Italian Navy / Marina Militare Italiana - Guided Missile Destroyer
D 561 ITS Francesco Mimbelli
(ex Ardimentoso)
 
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 09/21
Type, class: Guided Missile Destroyer; De la Penne class
Builder: Fincantieri SpA, Riva Trigoso (Genoa), Italy
 
STATUS:
Laid down: November 15, 1989 (as Ardimentoso)
Launched: April 13, 1991
renamed Francesco Mimbelli June 10, 1992
Commissioned: October 18, 1993

IN SERVICE
 

Homeport: Taranto
Namesake: Francesco Mimbelli (1903-1978)
Ships Motto: AUDENDUM EST (to be daring)
Technical Data: see INFO > Durand de la Penne class Guided Missile Destroyer
 
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Francesco Maria Mimbelli (April 16, 1903 - January 26, 1978)
 
... was an Italian Naval officer who fought in World War II.
He was born in Livorno and died in Rome.

service history:

Crete
Mimbelli was a commander of a Torpedo boat destroyer flotilla which fought in the Battle of Crete he was responsible for defending a convoy of two thousand Germans going to Crete in the face of superior British forces. Although the odds were heavily stacked against them (one torpedo boat against the seven ships of Force D) more than two thirds of the convoy survived due to Mimbelli's maneuvers.

Black Sea
He was also the commander of the Italian naval force based in the Black Sea, where he commanded a force of MAS boats. The Italian flotilla was responsible for sinking two submarines and a transport ship. They also torpedoed the Soviet cruiser Molotov which was not repaired until after the end of the conflict.

Post War
In 1946 Mimbelli was appointed captain of the Cruiser Giuseppe Garibaldi. He was subsequently promoted to Rear Admiral and became commander of the Italian Naval Academy. He retired as a Vice Admiral in 1964.

source: wikipedia

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another biography:


This is the second Unit of the DURAND DE LA PENNE class. The destroyer-missile launcher Francesco Mimbelli was laid down at Fincantieri, Riva Trigoso on November 15, 1989, launched on April 13, 1991 and later moved to La Spezia and commissioned to the Italian Navy on October 19, 1993. The official delivery ceremony was held in Genoa on December 11, 1993. She first bore the name “Ardimentoso”, but on June 10, 1992 she was given the name “Francesco Mimbelli,” after a great World War II hero, Commander of Destroyer Lupo, awarded the Gold Medal for Valour thanks to his heroic deed on May 21, 1941.

Destroyer Lupo’s mission was to escort about twenty requisitioned motor trawlers and some small Greek vessels full of German soldiers who were to invade the island of Crete.

At 22.30, near Capo Spada, ITS Lupo was suddenly sighted by an English Destroyer 1,000m away, so she started to spread a smokescreen to protect the small units she was escorting. Right afterwards, 700m away appeared a British cruiser that opened fire against the Italian destroyer which, in turn, fired back with all the weapons and launched a torpedo. During the exchange of cannon shots, suddenly appeared at very short distance a second cruiser, against which the destroyer concentrated her artillery and launched a second torpedo, while through the haze of the smokescreen other enemy ships were approaching.

In the heat of the fight, while the enemy units, confused by the scarce visibility, instead of focusing their artillery on the Italian unit were exchanging cannon shots, ITS Lupo, assuming that one of the torpedoes had hit the target, skillfully escaped the unequal fight. During the fight ITS Lupo was repeatedly hit by the enemy fire, with two dead and many severely injured among the crew. After the British formation left, ITS Lupo moved back to the site of the battle to pick up the survivors.

Designed to meet the need to strengthen and modernize the Italian Navy, this multitask destroyer-missile launcher’s differentiated equipment is fit to face sea, surface and underwater threats, and therefore to perform many basic tasks: first of all local air defense, participating in the protection of naval formations and convoys, but also in the national and NATO air defense. Moreover, it is fit to contrast underwater and surface units, to support amphibian operations and to help in coastal shelling. Her marked potentiality for command support, make her also fit to host a complex command platform.

The continuous bridge hull is with two deck erection blocks that incorporate the two funnels; the after deck – 25 m. long, makes up the flying deck, with a hangar hosting up to two helicopters. Special care was devoted to the reduction of acoustic, thermal and radar marking, making changes on both the extent and the inclination of the hull’s and deck erections outer surfaces that employ radar-absorbing coatings. To protect the more vital and vulnerable rooms, panels in aramidic fibers haven inserted between two steel plates, thus forming sandwiches whose weight is just one fifth of a normal metal armour-plating, so as to improve her self-defense features. The hull’s shape, plus the effects of two pairs of stabilizers and two bilge keels, allow to reduce the rolling effect by 90%. The vital equipment for the operation performances and damage control is absolutely adequate; extreme care was given to ship floodability and passive protection of the deck erection, as well as to silencing equipment and platform fittings.

ITS Francesco Mimbelli’s crest consists of two sections, separate and yet intrinsically connected. In centre left is depicted a stylized bow of the Unit with her pennant, D561, ploughing through the waves; while in the foreground to the right is a wolf’s head with the constellation of the wolf on top; the symbol of the beast and the five stars recall World War II’s hero Francesco Mimbelli, then Commander of the King’s Destroyer Lupo, who in the Aegian Sea on May 22, 1941 carried out the heroic deed that won him the Gold Medal for Valour. The match between the hero of the past, who incites and infuses courage into us, contemporary seamen, and the modern battleship, is depicted in the lower part of the logo where a chain sitting on the bow is clutched in the wolf’s paw. Lastly, under the symbol of the logo stands out the motto of the Unit: Audendum Est (dare one must), while in the upper part of the circle is the name of the Ship.

source: Italian Navy
 
 
francesco mimbelli italian navy marina militare italiana regia medaglia d'oro al valor
Francesco Mimbelli - awards:
Medaglia d'oro al Valor Militare - Gold Medal for Military Valour (1941)
2 x Medaglia di Argento al Valor Militare - Silver Medal for Military Valour (1941 & 1943)
5 x Medaglia di bronzo al Valor Militare - Bronze Medal for Military Valour
Croce di Guerra al Valor Militare - War Cross for Military Valor
 
 
ITS Francesco Mimbelli (D 561):
 
... history wanted
 
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