U.S. Navy Supercarrier Arrives at Port of Brownsville to be Dismantled

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In 1959 a state of the art supercarrier known as the USS Independence was commissioned to represent the U.S. Navy. That ship served until 1998, making it one of the longest serving vessels in American History.

Chris Green with International Shipbreaking said, “We wanted to put a ceremony together to honor the USS Independence and all the brave men and women who served aboard her. She served our country well and we owe her a debt that can never be repaid.”

Some came here out of respect. Others to say their final goodbyes. The USS Independence traveled over 16,000 miles to the Port of Brownsville. That is where it will be dismantled.

Chris Green, “We follow all the federal, state, and local regulations. We make sure that all of our workers are protected and that we have a first-class operation that the U.S. Navy wants to do business with.”

Cameron County, The Port of Brownsville, and EMR, the dismantling company, held a ceremony to say their final goodbye to the ship. Many came from across the country to see it one last time. Such was the case of four men. Who had never met. They each worked on the ship at some point in their lives.

Arturo Garza served in the independence from 1961-1962.

Pat McDermott was a Boiler Technician Third Class on the USS Independence. He served from 1988-1991.

Tom Sawyer served from 1966-1967 on the flight deck as Plane Captain. And Al Benton served from 1971-1975 as a Data System Technician Second Class.

According to Chris Green, the dismantling project will take 2 years. He estimates 200 people will be working around the clock.

“I’m very fortunate to see her take the last dip.” Said Tom Sawyer.

After speaking with many people, they are excited for this once in a lifetime opportunity.

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