Journal Entry  -  October 4, 1999  -  Day 23

Monday Morning Position Report
8:00 a.m., Mountain Daylight Time

15 Degrees, 30 Minutes North


99 Degrees, 05 Minutes West

Days Run:

70 Nautical Miles


5.83 Knots (Average)  running at reduced speed due to a fixed ETA of October 16 at the Panama Canal.

Total Run This Leg:  1,582.8 Nautical Miles
Total Average Speed:  5.27 Knots
Hours / Days This Leg:  300.5 Hours, 12.52 Days
Distance to Go This Leg:  1,365 Nautical Miles
Estimated Time Of Arrival:  7:00 a.m., Saturday, October 16
Present Course:  117 Degrees, Southeasterly
Winds:  West-Northwest at 12 Knots
Seas:  3 Feet
Swells:  8 Feet from the Southwest
Barometric Pressure:  1010 Millibars
Air Temperature:  80 Degrees
Sea Temperature:  81.5 Degrees
Visibility:  10 Miles
Skies:  Overcast
Sea Floor:  2,200 Fathoms or 13,200 Feet deep

Position:  USS New Jersey is presently 57 nautical miles southwest of Punta Maldonado, Mexico, at the base of the 3,800-foot Sierra Fuerte, along the Pacific coastline southeast of Acapulco.

USS New Jersey's Visitors Skipper Hails From Garden State

The USS O'Kane (DDG-77), the brand new missile-packed destroyer, which rendered a pass by salute to the USS New Jersey Saturday at sunset, is being commanded by a New Jersey boy, Cmdr. David C. Hulse, from Mendham, N.J., in Morris County.

Only 5 weeks departed from her Bath, Maine construction yard, the O'Kane was speeding toward Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, her new home port, when she spotted the Battleship on the horizon off the Mexican coast two days ago.   Communications with the O'Kane that afternoon revealed sailors aboard from New Jersey, but no mention was made that her Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Hulse, was also a Jersey man, so to speak.

The newest destroyer in the Navy's Fleet is scheduled to arrive in Pearl Harbor at 7:30 a.m., October 15, and will be commissioned for service there on October 23, two days after USS New Jersey leaves the Panama Canal for home.

The Navy's most advanced ship will get underway for several weeks of testing and qualifications of its new combat systems equipment on the ocean range off the Pacific Missile Range Facility on Kauai after commissioning.

This "Arleigh Burke" class warship is the 27th destroyer of her class and the 16th built by Bath Iron Works.  The ship was built at a cost of $900 million.   O'Kane left Bath, Maine for her transit to Hawaii on August 26, 1999.

O'Kane is 504 Feet long, 66 Feet wide and displaces nearly 9,000 tons when fully loaded.  The ship has a crew of 25 officers and 330 enlisted Sailors.  O'Kane is powered by gas turbine engines, similar to the type used in jet aircraft.

This multi-mission ship is equipped with the Navy's modern Aegis combat weapons system, which combines space age communication, radar and weapons technologies in a single platform for unlimited flexibility.  These versatile ships are designed to operate independently or in support of aircraft carrier and amphibious operations.

O'Kane is named in honor of Rear Adm. Richard H. O'Kane (1911-1994), who was awarded the Medal of Honor for his daring attacks on two Japanese convoys while in command of the World War II submarine Tang (SS 306) in 1944.

After sinking his submarine, the Japanese captured then Cmdr. O'Kane, who spent the rest of the war in captivity.  The ship's Matron of Honor is Mrs. Ernestine O'Kane, wife of the ship's namesake.  The ship's sponsor is Leslie Allen Berry, Rear Adm. O'Kane's granddaughter.

USS New Jersey was in good company Saturday afternoon.

Submitted by Bob Wernet onboard the Sea Victory.


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