MARINETTE, Wis., 6 Dec. 2010. A Lockheed Martin-led industry team launched the nation's third littoral combat ship (LCS), Fort Worth, at the Marinette Marine shipyard. The 389-foot Fort Worth was launched into the Menominee River. Fort Worth will continue to undergo outfitting and testing at Marinette Marine before delivery to the Navy in 2012. Just prior to its launch, the ship's sponsor, Congresswoman Kay Granger of Texas, christened Fort Worth with the traditional smashing of a champagne bottle across the ship's bow. "It is an incredibly rewarding experience to see Fort Worth launch into the water--on time and on budget," says Orlando Carvalho, president of Lockheed Martin's Mission Systems and Sensors business. "The team's strong performance and hard work in bringing Fort Worth to this point illustrates our ability to meet the Navy's need for a class of affordable, multi-mission combatants." "Serving as the USS Fort Worth's sponsor is one of the proudest moments in my career," Congresswoman Granger said. "This is just the beginning of a commitment I am making with everyone in Fort Worth to all those who will sail on the ship over the course of her life. The enthusiastic residents of our fine city and I have pledged to take great care of this magnificent ship and its crew. With 'Grit and Tenacity' we will once again demonstrate our community's key principles of service and patriotism." In March 2009, the U.S. Navy awarded the Lockheed Martin-led industry team a contract to construct Fort Worth. Only 20 months later, the ship is 80 percent complete. Prior to constructing Fort Worth, the Lockheed Martin-led team designed and constructed USS Freedom (LCS 1), which was deployed in February and is now based in its homeport of San Diego. USS Freedom was christened in 2006 and delivered to the Navy in 2008. In addition to Marinette Marine Corporation, a Fincantieri company, the Lockheed Martin-led industry team for Fort Worth includes naval architect Gibbs & Cox as well as various domestic and international companies.