June ’24 Newsletter

News from the boat – Delivery!

News From The BoatOn April 25, 2024 Huntington Ingalls Industries announced that its Newport News Shipbuilding division had delivered Virginia-class fast-attack submarine New Jersey (SSN 796) to the U.S. Navy.

New Jersey is the 11th Virginia-class submarine delivered by NNS, and the 23rd built as part of the teaming agreement with General Dynamics Electric Boat.

It is a proud day for our entire team when we deliver a high-quality submarine like New Jersey to the fleet,” said Jason Ward, NNS vice president of Virginia-class submarine construction. “The mission ahead for New Jersey and her crew is clear, and we applaud our shipbuilders for delivering this critical capability to the fleet, while maintaining our highest standards of safety and quality.”

More than 10,000 shipbuilders from NNS and Electric Boat participated in the construction of New Jersey, alongside thousands of suppliers across the country, including more than 100 in New Jersey who support submarine construction. It is the first Virginia-class submarine designed and built with crew gender integration.

The boat was subsequently transferred to Naval Station, Norfolk – where it is now officially homeported.  It will undergo additional operational exercises and testing over the next few months, as it prepares to “come to life” – at the commissioning in September.

Letter from the Commissioning Committee

Good day!

Letter from the Commissioning CommitteeCountdown to commissioning is under 100 days! The Commissioning Committee continues to place finishing touches upon an exhilarating week of events that will make our Nation, Navy, and Crew proud and will be executed in true Jersey fashion.

We are extremely excited to announce the crew of the USS New Jersey continues to be hard at work and remains underway through a multitude of testing evolutions. Commander Steven A. Halle, SSN-796 Commanding Officer, reports that he could not be more proud of the crew. A crew which continues to exceed expectations in every aspect of their mission!

Additionally, the New Jersey proudly celebrates newly qualified crew members, promotions and advancement to Department Heads. This quietly speaks volumes to the dedication of the women and men aboard the fastest and finest of the Navy.

During their time in New Jersey, the crew will be engaging with local community members, learning more about the great Garden State, and honoring the citizens tragically lost on September 11th. As we progress toward the commissioning date, please continue to monitor our social media for exciting updates and event information.


Mike Zimmerman

Submarine Organization 101

Submarine Organization 101

“Like all military units a modern U.S. nuclear submarine is organized by the various functions the crew performs on a daily basis as it readies itself for an eventual war.  In the Navy, a sailor’s job expertise is called their rating.  The sailors with the same rating are assigned to a division. The divisions that serve similar functions are organized into Departments.  Departments are led by a Department Head, who is a mid-grade officer who reports directly to the Executive Officer and the Commanding Officer.  There are 4 Departments on a modern US nuclear submarine; Weapons, Navigation/Operations, Engineering, and Supply.

In this letter we will describe the Weapons Department in detail, in future newsletters we will describe the 3 other departments.  The Weapons Department implements the submarine’s ultimate mission; which is to put ordinance on enemy targets at the Captain’s orders to maintain and defend our national interests.  The Weapons Department is responsible for safely handling undersea weapons, such as cruise missiles, torpedoes, and mines, and small arms to defend the ship while in port or transiting along the surface.  The weapons department is in charge of all of the electronic equipment used to detect threats and the mechanical equipment to handle, launch and guide the weapons. 

The Weapons Department is composed of 3 Divisions – Sonar, Fire Control, and Torpedoman’s Divisions.  We’ll start with a description of Sonar – The Sonar Technicians (STS) get to employ what is arguably the most advanced technology on any warfighting vessel.  Modern submarines have many kinds of listening devices that can track and identify friend or foe in any ocean around the world.  The Sonar Techs are the “eyes” and ears of the ship.  Next we have the Fire Control Technicians, or FTs. These sailors take in all the data and information identified by sonar and maintain an accurate picture of the battlespace.  When the decision is made to launch a missile or torpedo, the officers rely on the successful operation of the FT’s “firing solution”.   Before the decision is ultimately made to fire a weapon, you’d better make sure it is properly loaded and ready to launch.  This is the job of the Torpedoman (TMs).  TMs are honed on procedures to keep the ship safe while moving weapons of war within the confined space on a submarine.  Torpedoman’s Mates have to be mechanically inclined since their systems utilize extremely high pressure hydraulics, pneumatics, and system interlocks to prevent catastrophe due to weapons handling operations.  

Weapons Department jobs are among the highest pressure roles on board the boat.  While the ship is not at sea, the weapons department carries a heavy load of maintaining and upgrading their equipment, conducting anti-terrorism/force protection duties, and maintaining proficiency for their at-sea war fighting skill in the many simulation trainers that our Naval Base facilities have to offer.” 

Sponsor Highlights – Navesink Country Club and Merri-Makers

We are thrilled to extend our heartfelt gratitude to Navesink Country Club for their generous sponsorship of two events planned for Commissioning Week. Their support and commitment have played an instrumental role in the planning of both our Commissioning Gala and Crew Picnic. 

The picturesque setting of Navesink Country Club is going to provide the perfect backdrop for our events, offering attendees a unique and memorable experience. The club’s outstanding facilities and attentive staff are sure to make every detail perfect, allowing our guests to fully enjoy the activities.

Beyond the beautiful venue, Navesink Country Club’s sponsorship has helped us achieve our fundraising goals, enabling us to continue our mission to support our crew, the United States Navy, and the State of New Jersey in meaningful ways. Their dedication to giving back exemplifies the spirit of partnership and generosity that we value deeply.

Thank you, Navesink Country Club, for your invaluable contribution and for being a cornerstone of our work. 

Navesink Country Club

Merri-Makers, a family business of over 45 years, will be providing services during Saturday’s post-commissioning reception, as well as providing lunch to sponsors as they tour the submarine on Friday. Their catered events range from small intimate settings to large scale events (including family day for one of our larger sponsors).  They operate out of 12 different venues, and have the honor to represent central and south Jersey in the “Leading Caterers of America” organization.  They also have the distinction of catering for 3 presidents.

Saturday’s lunch will be special.  Merri-Makers is teaming up with Jersey Mike’s (submarine sandwiches) to provide a “jersey themed” lunch.  We’re sure that you will enjoy it.

THANK YOU to our recent sponsors!!

  • Leidos
  • L3Harris
  • NJ Bankers Association
  • Kenneth Pochank

MERCHANDISE! Get your 796 gear NOW!  

BallcapDon’t wait until Commissioning Week to get your gear!  Get it now and show your support of USS NEW JERSEY (SSN 796) and her crew all summer long with official 796 gear!  From command coins and hats to engraved boxes and stainless steel key chains, we have what you need to show your 796 pride. 

We are restocking regularly!   Visit https://ussnjcc.myshopify.com/

Ticket Update

Battleship New Jersey is back home!

BB62 Back In CamdenAfter nearly 12 weeks in dry dock at the Philadelphia Navy Yard and several days at the Paulsboro Marine Terminal, the Battleship New Jersey is back at the Camden Waterfront! Captain Steven Halle and six members of the crew were aboard as BB-62 returned home on June 20.  

The Battleship returned to a celebration on the Pier and Promenade. The B Street Band rocked the Pier with the music of Bruce Springsteen.  Mascots, including the Philly Phanatic, Gritty, Swoop, Franklin and Phang mingled with guests and greeted the Battleship’s return on the Pier.   Despite the heat, everyone had a great time as we welcomed home the Big J!

Visit https://www.battleshipnewjersey.org/ for more information.