Rep. Ron Kresha, R-Little Falls, attended the commissioning of the USS Minnesota last weekend, joining 24 lawmakers, and dozens more state and federal elected officials, military members, and private citizens from Minnesota in attendance to witness the commissioning of the USS Minnesota in Norfolk, Va., which took place Sept. 7.
The USS Minnesota is the Navy’s newest fast-attack submarine and is now in use at Naval Station Norfolk as of Sept. 7. The USS Minnesota features a crew of 135 sailors and is hailed as the most advanced warship ever to enter active service, able to sustain submerged speeds of more than 25 knots (30 miles per hour). The ship weighs more than 7,800 tons, is 377 feet long and can stay submerged for up to three months at a time.
The commissioning ceremony featured remarks from Senators Franken and Klobuchar, Congresswoman Betty McCollum, and a myriad of distinguished military officers to mark this historic occasion for the state of Minnesota. The USS Minnesota is just the third ship to be named for the state, and is the first in more than 100 years.
Kresha attended the ceremony with his son, Alex.
“It was an honor to be able to be among those representing our state at the commissioning ceremony, and to be able to meet many of the fine servicemen and women serving our country,” Kresha said. Many state lawmakers, including Kresha received tours of USS Minnesota and other warships from sailors over the weekend.
“Their hospitality and professionalism was unmatched, and it was a great reminder that we can never forget the dedication and sacrifice these men and women make to protect and defend our country,” Kresha said.
Legislators paid for the trip with personal funds, and no taxpayer funds were spent to finance the trip, Kresha noted.