“The USS Michael Monsoor is manned and ready and reports for duty.”
With those words, the Navy’s newest destroyer, named for a Garden Grove High School graduate and posthumous Medal of Honor recipient, was commissioned into service, her new crew lining the bow and standing at attention.
Monsoor’s final brave act – diving onto a grenade to save his fellow SEALS and soldiers while providing cover from a roof in Ramadi, Iraq, in 2006 – was spoken of frequently during the hour-long commissioning ceremony Saturday morning, Jan. 26, dockside at the Naval Air Station North Island in San Diego.
But so too were his acts of devotion to his family, his love of country and strength of character.
Monsoor’s mother, Sally Monsoor, is the ship’s sponsor. It is the second of three “next-generation” Zumwalt-class destroyers the Navy is adding to its fleet.
On Saturday, as the crew, which had been assembled behind the audience of a couple hundred people, sprinted forward toward the end of the ceremony to man the ship, Sally Monsoor was standing before the towering deck watching as each passed before her.
Monsoor’s two brothers passed the traditional telescoping long glass to the first officer as the ship’s first watch took its place. Other family members watched from the front row of the audience.