The Uniteed States Navy coastal minesweeper USS Chief (MCM-14) is the only US Navy ship of the lines whose namesake was given out of respect to the ran of United States Navy Chief.
The USS Chief, An Avenger class mine countermeassure ship of the United States Navy and serves as part of the Pacific fleet stationed in Sasebo, Japan. She was launched June 12th, 1993 just past a full 100 years since the birth of the United States Navy Chiefs on April 1st 1893. Her crew is comprised of 8 officers, 6 Chief Petty Officers and 70 enlisted sailors.
Her crest ~
Navy blue and gold are the traditional colors of the United States Navy. The mine in the center of the shield represents the mine countermeasures mission of the Chief while the crossed Officers’ sword and Enlisted cutlass symbolize Surface Warfare excellence. The fouled Navy anchor, insignia of a Chief Petty Officer, is further symbolic of the United States Navy’s leadership and commemorates the fact that Chief was launched on 12 June 1993 during the centennial of the Chief Petty Officer Corps. The three silver stars above the fouled anchor depict the leadership and service of the Master Chief Petty Officers of the Navy (MCPON) – past, present and future and honor the ship’s Sponsor.
The stars are also arranged in the same manner about the anchor as the international navigational symbol for lights and shapes about the mast; signifying a vessel engaged in mine clearance operations. There are 84 links in the fouled anchor chain, one for each plank owner, the ship’s sponsor, and the Matron of Honor. The trident atop the crest denotes seapower. The blue and white surface from which it rises represents both the sea, upon which the ship was born.
Surrounding the trident are seven stars representing the seven Battle Stars won during the Second World War and the Korean War by the first ship to bear the name “Chief”, USS Chief (AM 315). The five above the trident for World War II and the two alongside for the Korean War. (reference Wikipedia)
A minsweeper is one of the msot important ships in the US Navy arsenal. Her very special gear and equipment and highly trained sailors prevent America’s US Navy Navy from encountering dangerous mines hellbent on sinking our ships. THis is one reason why the minsweepers carry a variety of slogans and important saying that are not jsut cool but also create a picture of what they do. Saying from wooden ships and iron men due to the fact that their hulls are made of wood to prevent magnetic mines from being attracted to “Where The Fleet Goes, We’ve Been” suggesting that no US Surface fleet will enter a harbor, port or location where the possibility of threats can be encountered unless a mine countermeasure ship has swept the area.
“First In, Last Out” another US Navy slogan associated with mine countermeasure ships. They are the advance warning of any trouble or a minefild that can have destructive consequences when a fleet enters hostile waters.
“Find, Classify, Destroy” goes hand in hand with the training of minemen and their trade. They find the mines, they identify the mines, and then they destory them using their sophisticated equipment.
The USS Chief mess shirt design was created for the men and women of MCM-14 both out of respect to the USN Chiefs aboard the USS Chief but also those that carry the rank Of Chief Petty Officer which this grand ship has the honor of being called.
The USS Chief’s Mess shirt ~
The design created for the United States Navy USS Chief has elements of a trident suggesting its command of its turf and conenction to the sea, the stormy waters and weather that can be encountered at sea the skull found below the bow of the MCM-14 which suggests that many of her dangerous tools are below the waterline. We were honored to be support the officers, Chiefs and sailors aboard the USS Chief.
The Avenger Class mine countermeasure ship!