BURNS HARBOR, Ind. — The Navy is planning to commission its new littoral combat ship Indianapolis at a northwestern Indiana port this fall.

The ceremony marking the ship's entry into the Navy's active fleet is set for Oct. 26 at Burns Harbor along Lake Michigan. It is the fourth military vessel carrying the Indianapolis name.

The second Indianapolis was sunk by a Japanese submarine in July 1945 while returning from the Pacific islands of Guam and Tinian.

On Tinian, it delivered key components for the Hiroshima atomic bomb.

Only 317 of its nearly 1,200 crewmen survived the sinking and days in shark-infested waters.

The ship was built at a Marinette, Wisconsin, shipyard and will be based at Naval Station Mayport near Jacksonville, Florida.

It is a Freedom-class littoral combat ship designed to be highly maneuverable for missions such as mine-clearing and anti-submarine warfare.

Navy Times editor’s note: The sponsor of the ship who will bring it to life is Jill Donnelly, the wife of former Indiana Sen. Joe Donnelly.

This warship is particularly important to both the surviving crew members of the Portland-class cruiser sunk by Japanese submarine I-58 on 30 July 1945.

Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer noted that during the warship’s christening ceremony.

“The future USS Indianapolis honors more than a city. It pays tribute to the legacy of those who served during the final days of World War II on board USS Indianapolis (CA-35),” he said.

“This ship will continue the proud legacy of service embodied in the name Indianapolis, and is a testament to the true partnership between the Navy and industry.”

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