MARINETTE (WLUK) -- The newest Freedom variant Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) will be named to honor a Wisconsin city with historical ties to the U.S. Navy.
Marinette Marine's LCS 29 will be the future USS Beloit, after the city of Beloit in Rock County.
“The city and citizens of Beloit have been a steadfast supporter of the Navy and Marine Corps,” said Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer. “From building engines for freedom-variant LCSs to manufacturing components for the Ford-class aircraft carriers, the contributions of Beloit citizens make our Navy stronger, more capable, and more lethal. I am proud to name the next ship in honor of the city and citizens of Beloit.”
The city's relationship with the Navy began in 1938 when Fairbanks Morse in Beloit sold its first engine to the Navy. Beloit supported the company's wartime efforts by building new housing developments and establishing bus lines to bring in workers from nearby communities and helping women join the workforce at that time.
Fairbanks Morse makes a large percentage of the Navy's large medium-speed diesel engines and was chosen as the Freedom variant "Supplier of the Year" in 2015.