Delaware Sub Nearing Operational Status as Crew Eats First Meal

Sailors enjoy the first meal prepared on the Virginia-class submarine Delaware (SSN 791). HUNTINGTON INGALLS INDUSTRIES / Ashley Cowan

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. — Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) took another step toward delivery of the submarine Delaware (SSN 791) to the U.S. Navy when the first meal recently was served aboard the nuclear-powered fast attack submarine.

On the menu: salad, sausage and spaghetti with a choice of meat sauce or Alfredo.

“The first meal is a significant event in construction for both shipbuilders and the Navy crew,” said Bob Bolden, director of Virginia-class submarine construction at HII’s Newport News Shipbuilding division. “This is a result of shipbuilders and Sailors working side by side and is one of the last steps in the journey to bringing the ship to its operational state to support sea trials and delivery.”

The Virginia-class submarine is pierside at Newport News and is in the final stages of construction and testing.

“I appreciate Newport News Shipbuilding’s superb work through our construction process and am immensely proud of my crew’s efforts to open our galley, support our crew and take this next step toward Delaware becoming a self-sufficient, sea-going warship,” said Cmdr. Brian P. Hogan, commanding officer of the pre-commissioning unit.

Delaware is the 18th Virginia-class submarine built as part of the teaming agreement with General Dynamics Electric Boat. More than 10,000 shipbuilders from Newport News and Electric Boat have participated in Delaware’s construction since the work began in September 2013; more than 5,000 suppliers across 48 states have provided parts and materials critical to the submarine’s construction.

Delaware was christened in October 2018 and launched into the James River for the first time two months later. Following successful sea trials later this year, Delaware will be the ninth Virginia-class submarine delivered by Newport News.