U.S. Navy Warship Named After Hershel “Woody” Williams, Marine Medal of Honor Recipient

Recently I wrote an article about Hershel “Woody” Williams and how he was awarded the Medal of Honor for his actions on Iwo Jima during WWII. Woody is still very much alive and was present at the recent commissioning ceremonies for a new ship named in his honor. You will see him speak in one of the videos included in this piece.The new ship, the USS Hershel Woody Williams (ESB-4), is the second of its kind to be commissioned by the United States Navy. And it is a unique ship in design and function, as you will see in this video. The ESB stands for Expeditionary Sea Base, and was formerly known as an Afloat Foward Staging Base. It will be assigned to the 6th Fleet operating in the Mediterranean Sea this summer.What makes these ESB ships unique is both their design and their function. They are intended to be a direct transportation and delivery system for United States Marine Expeditionary Units. Hence their unique design. They have two functional decks. The top deck is a flight deck that lands and launches CH-53 Sea Stallion heavy lift support helicopters for supplying the Marines ashore, and MV-22 Ospreys to deliver troops to shore and back.Source: YouTube/13News Now
The USS Hershel Williams arrives in Norfolk, VA.

The lower open deck is designed for launching and berthing small boats, the kind of boats that can deliver small teams of Marines on several kinds of missions. This two deck design gives these ships a very unique look. And it is a big ship. It is so big that when it was transferred from San Diego to Virginia, it had to go around Cape Horn in Chile as it was too big even for the newly enlarged Panama Canal.Source: YouTube/13News Now
The ship bears the name of a living WWII Medal of Honor recipient.

As mentioned above, Williams was present at the recent commissioning ceremonies. He was quoted in an article on Military.com as saying, “Receiving the Medal of Honor is the top man-made miracle in my life. But this ship that bears my name and will sail the seven seas to protect America for many years to come is close to the top.”Source: US Marines
Hershel “Woody” Williams served as a Marine in WWII, and fought in the Battle of Iwo Jima.
Williams received the Medal of Honor from President Harry S. Truman after the end of WWII. At the commissioning ceremony he surprised the crew and all in attendance when he gave his Medal of Honor to the crew of this new ship. It was an overwhelming moment for the crew.Command Senior Chief Petty Officer, Tiffanie Simpson said of the gesture, “There were a lot of teary eyes. It is a monument to how humble he is and was a moment I’ll never forget.”
Source: US Marines
President Harry S. Truman places the medal on Williams’ neck.
Hershel Woody William’s Medal of Honor is now enshrined in the ship’s galley.Proper greatergood_ctg_abovevideo

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