Massachussetts Declares Freedom Week

Old Ironsides

Old Ironsides

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The governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts proclaimed Dec. 2-5 USS Freedom Week in honor of the littoral combat ship USS Freedom (LCS 1) and the U.S. Navy for its dedication to the ideals of democracy and the preservation liberty for all.

Upon Freedom’s morning arrival to Charlestown Navy Ship Yard in Boston Dec. 5, where she moored behind USS Constitution, the Boston Fire Department Commissioner Roderick J. Fraser Jr. presented the proclamation to Freedom’s Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Don Gaberielson, in the pilot house during a tour of the ship’s spaces.

“Being parked here next to USS Constitution for me is a really special moment because I have really strong feelings about our tradition and our legacy in the Navy,” Gaberielson said.

The following day Boatswain’s Mate Seaman Dustin Foster from USS Constitution participated in the presentation of colors with Chief Quartermaster (SW) Stephanie Kotatis, as canons firing from the Constitution sounded morning colors.

“Today’s colors was a celebration of Navy heritage with the oldest commissioned warship doing colors aboard the newest commissioned combat ship,” Foster said. “This a real honor for me to come on board Freedom today and conduct colors with the crew here.”

“It was very interesting to hear a canon go off,” Kotatis said. “I sort of wish now my first duty station when I joined the Navy was aboard the Constitution because you seem to learn more about the culture, history and traditions of the Navy.”

More than half the crew attended colors on the flight deck to witness the traditional routine carried out with a mix of the old and the new.

“It was nice to be on board the ship today, and I’ve been really excited to see what it’s like to be aboard this new ship,” Foster said. “I already know what is like to be aboard an old ship in the Navy.”

Ken Hendrix (NNS)

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