Monday, March 12, 2012
"When the makers of Top Gun were filming on board the USS Enterprise, they donated a set of black fuzzy dice to liven up the ship's otherwise drab interior.
A quarter-century later, the dice were still dangling inside the tower of "the Big E" as the world's first nuclear-powered aircraft carrier set sail on its final voyage at around 5am today (NZ time).
The trinket is a reminder of the ship's storied 50-year history that includes action in several wars, a prominent role in the Cuban missile crisis and serving as a spotter ship for John Glenn's historic orbit of the earth.
"To serve on this ship, certainly in this capacity, you certainly have to be a student of the ship's history," said Rear Admiral Walter Carter, commander of the Enterprise strike group. "Fifty years of service, in our nation's history, we've never had a warship in service that long..."
The eighth ship to carry the name. May we one day have a real ship like the fictional one that shares a proud name.