||10k||Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer named the next Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer in honor of Marine Corps Vietnam veteran and Navy Cross recipient Lance Cpl. Patrick Gallagher.
Gallagher immigrated from Ballyhaunis, Ireland in 1962. Four years later, he joined the Marine Corps, where he served in H Company, 2nd Battalion, 4th Marine Regiment, 3rd Marine Division during Operation Hastings in the Republic of Vietnam.
"Lance Corporal Gallagher is an American hero. His exemplary service in defense of our nation and his strength and sacrifice leaves an example for all servicemen and women to emulate," said Spencer. "His legacy will live on in the future USS Gallagher and his heroic actions will continue to inspire future Sailors and Marines."
Gallagher was awarded the Navy Cross for his actions on July 18, 1966, when he selflessly threw his body on an incoming grenade, shielding his fellow Marines. He quickly pitched the grenade to a nearby river where it safely exploded out of harm's way, without injury to himself or others. Gallagher was killed in action one year later in Da Loc near Da Nang on March 30, 1967. He is one of only 30 known Irish citizens to have died in the Vietnam conflict.||Dave Wright|