NORFOLK, Va (NNS) -- The captain of M/V Maersk Alabama received the inaugural National Maritime Valor Award from the Nauticus National Maritime Center Nov. 19 at the Nauticus in Norfolk, Va.
The ceremony held Thursday evening was a continuance of the reunion of Capt. Richard Phillips and the captain and crew of the guided-missile destroyer, USS Bainbridge (DDG96) and the Navy SEALs.
Speakers at the ceremony included the honorable Paul D. Fraim, mayor of the city of Norfolk, John Reinhart, president and CEO of Maersk Line, Limited, Adm. Gary Roughead, chief of naval operations (CNO) and Phillips.
"This is a celebration of the courage and dedication of Capt. Richard Phillips of the Maersk Alabama," said Fraim.
The CNO and Reinhart expressed their gratitude to the Bainbridge, the Navy SEALs and Phillips and the crew of the Maersk Alabama for doing their job in keeping international waters safe for all aspects of American security from merchant trade to military endeavors.
During the ceremony Phillips presented 15 Sailors who had a direct role in his rescue with a commemorative coin that was minted in Norfolk with images of the Bainbridge, the Navy SEALs' pin and the Maersk Alabama on the face.
"You have served honorably and you have written a page in the history of our Navy that will last forever," Roughead said.
Earlier Thursday, Phillips thanked the captain and crew of the Bainbridge and presented 16 additional Sailors with the commemorative coin during a ceremony on the fantail of the Bainbridge. A press conference with Phillips and Cmdr. Frank X. Castellano, commanding officer of the Bainbridge, was held afterward in the Nauticus.
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