191023-N-UZ091-0011 BURNS HARBOR, Ind. (Oct. 23, 2019) The crew of the future USS Indianapolis (LCS 17) man the rails during a pre-commissioning rehearsal. LCS 17 is the 19th littoral combat ship to enter the fleet and the ninth of the Freedom-variant. It will be the fourth ship named for Indianapolis, Indiana’s capital city. (U.S. Navy Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Timothy Haggerty)
The USS Indianapolis (LCS 17) is one of the U.S. Navy’s new Freedom Class littoral combat ships. Commissioned last fall, the ship’s motto, “Legacy of War,” reflects that ships named Indianapolis have served in World War I, World War II, and the Cold War.
A team of filmmakers went to sea with the Indianapolis’ crew to provide a sailor’s-eye view of life on the LCS, and we’ve got the video.
Littoral combat ships are outfitted with mission packages that deploy manned and unmanned vehicles and sensors in support of mine countermeasures, anti-submarine warfare, or surface warfare missions, according to Navy.mil. They perform maritime security operations, theater security cooperation engagements, and freedom of navigation patrols — keeping critical maritime commerce routes open.
The warship’s modular mission packages can be quickly and cost-effectively updated with new weapons and weapon systems without taking the ship out of service for modifications and modernizations. Littoral combat ships can patrol the littorals and access ports where other ships may be unable to go.
Ethan E. Rocke is a contributor and former senior editor for Coffee or Die Magazine, a New York Times bestselling author, and award-winning photographer and filmmaker. He is a veteran of the US Army and Marine Corps. His work has been published in Maxim Magazine, American Legion Magazine, and many others. He is co-author of The Last Punisher: A SEAL Team THREE Sniper’s True Account of the Battle of Ramadi.