The USS Gerald R. Ford. Courtesy Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation
The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation will host a live broadcast of the commissioning of the USS Gerald R. Ford.
A public ceremony to commission the aircraft carrier named after former President Ford will be held on Saturday at 9:30 a.m. The broadcast begins at 10 a.m. and will be on display from both inside and outside the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum in downtown Grand Rapids. The commissioning ceremony will be broadcast live from Naval Station Norfolk in Virginia.
“We’re excited for this opportunity to share the commissioning ceremony with the Grand Rapids community,” said Joe Calvaruso, executive director, Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation. “We are thankful for the community’s continued support honoring President Ford’s legacy.”
The ceremony will include a presentation by retired Adm. Patrick Walsh.
The Gerald R. Ford Presidential Foundation fosters increased awareness of the life, career, values and legacy of America’s 38th president. It supports permanent and changing exhibits designed to promote historical literacy, conferences, educational outreach and other programs, including at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum.
USS Gerald R. Ford
The USS Gerald R. Ford is the first of the U.S. Navy’s new Ford class aircraft carrier. It can carry more planes and operate with nearly a thousand fewer sailors that the previous Nimitz carrier class. It will also increase flying missions by a third. The ship will go through workups at sea before becoming operational in 2020.
Adm. Patrick Walsh
Before serving as the 59th Commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet from Sep. 25, 2009 to Jan. 20, 2012, Walsh served as the 35th vice chief of Naval Operations and as commander of the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command and commander of the U.S. 5th Fleet. He retired from the Navy with more than 34 years of service.