The second Hobart class destroyer marked a major milestone in its construction when she was officially named Brisbane and launched in Adelaide on 15 December.
Mrs. Robyn Shackleton, wife of former Chief of Navy and Commanding Officer of HMAS Brisbane II, Vice Admiral David Shackleton (retired), was guest of honor and launching lady, sending the destroyer on her way with the traditional toast and smash of a bottle. Mrs. Shackleton served in the Navy from 1985 to 1999 and said launching Brisbane was "the most important role" in her naval career.
"I am truly honored and humbled...I feel as if I have come home and am so looking forward to meeting every one of my new family and playing an active role in their lives in such a wonderful ship,” Mrs Shackleton said. “Today not only marks the beginning of a new adventure for Brisbane, it also marks the beginning of a new adventure for me and for David.
Minister for Defence Personnel, the Hon. Dan Tehan, attended the launch and said the occasion was the culmination of the hard work and commitment of thousands of workers across Australia.
“Australia is undertaking an unprecedented upgrade of its naval capabilities, and the addition of Brisbane to our fleet will help ensure our ongoing national security,” Minister Tehan said. “I have been onboard the first destroyer, Hobart, and it is quite apparent these ships will become a valuable asset to the Royal Australian Navy.”
Minister for Defence, Senator the Hon Marise Payne, said Brisbane’s launch was a significant step towards the delivery of three world-leading warships to the Navy. “The Air Warfare Destroyers will be amongst the world’s most capable multi-purpose warships that will provide the Royal Australian Navy with air defense for accompanying ships, land forces and infrastructure in coastal areas,” Minister Payne said. “Brisbane will have cutting edge layered defensive and offensive resources capable of operating across the full range of maritime operations, from escort duties and providing entire task groups with air defense, right through to law enforcement and rescue operations.”
Over the coming months, outfitting of Brisbane will continue, as will the loading of combat system equipment.
The first ship, Hobart, will sail into waters off the coast of South Australia on sea trials in early 2017 to undertake testing of combat and communications systems and further platform testing.
The third destroyer, to be named Sydney, will now move forward into its final position in the shipyard where it will finish being consolidated into a full ship.
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