U.S. Amphibious Assault Ships
||U.S. Navy USS America (LHA-6), amphibious assault ship emblem|
SHIELD: Azure (Dark Blue), a chevron Gules, edged Or, in base issuant a hand holding a torch Argent (Silver Gray), enflamed Proper all below five mullets in chevron Argent; on two cantons of the third, in dexter a coiled snake of the second and canton sinister, a demi-trident of the first.
CREST: From a wreath Or and Azure (Dark Blue), an American eagle wings elevated, grasping in its dexter claw an olive branch all Proper, in its sinister claw six arrows Argent (Silver Gray), bearing on its breast the Coat of Arms of the United States.
MOTTO: A scroll Or doubled Azure (Dark Blue) and inscribed in Latin “BELLO VEL PACE PARATUS” which translates to “Prepared in War or in Peace” of the second.
SUPPORTERS: Behind the shield a United States Navy officer sword and a Marine Corps officer mameluke in saltire, points downward, Proper.
SHIELD: Dark blue and gold are the colors traditionally associated with the Navy, representing the sea and excellence. Red conveys patriotism. The red chevron edged yellow further symbolizes the Marine Corps enlisted rank insignia and signifies the loyalty, dedication and fighting spirit the Marines bring in support of USS AMERICA’s amphibious mission. The five stars represent the battle stars earned by USS AMERICA (CVA-66) during the Vietnam War. The hand and torch, adapted from the Statue of Liberty, symbolize enlightenment and America’s role as the “Beacon of Liberty.” The gold cantons indicate achievement and honor USS AMERICA’S rich naval heritage. On the left, the coiled snake is reminiscent of the Gadsden flag, the first flag carried into battle by the Continental Marine Corps; on the right, the trident denotes sea power and symbolizes the three previous warships named AMERICA.
CREST: The eagle with red, white and blue shield reflects the Coat of Arms of the United States of America with its wings elevated to signify the aviation capability and heritage of USS AMERICA. The eagle further symbolizes the image of the Navy enlisted rank insignia and represents their service to USS AMERICA with honor, courage and commitment. The olive branch and arrows symbolize USS AMERICA’s readiness to conduct either wartime or peacetime operations. The six arrows indicate USS AMERICA’s hull number, first in the America class.
SUPPORTERS: The crossed Navy officer sword and Marine Corps officer mameluke represent leadership and attest to the unity and teamwork between the two Sea Services, the foundation for success of USS AMERICA’s amphibious warfare missions.
MOTTO: The phrase “BELLO VEL PACE PARATUS” (Prepared in War or in Peace), derived from the Second Committee’s recommendation for a motto for the Great Seal of the United States in 1780.
SEAL: The coat of arms as blazoned in full color on a white oval surmounting a red oval edged white, superimposed by a white oval voided and bearing 50 dark blue stars representing the Military Service Flag in tribute to the unwavering support and sacrifice of military families across the nation. The top star is gold, edged with a thin blue border in honor of those who have sacrificed all in defense of America’s freedom, all within a dark blue designation band, edged with a gold roped border and bearing the name USS AMERICA at top and LHA 6 at base, in gold letters.
||U.S. Navy USS Bataan (LHD-5), amphibious assault ship emblem (crest)|
Shield: Dark blue and gold are the traditional Navy colors and reflect the sea and excellence. Red denotes courage and sacrifice. White is for integrity. The seahorse represents USS BATAAN's natural association with the sea. The red path commemorates the Bataan Death March. The spears form a wedge underscoring amphibious assault and deployment of men and cargo ashore, as well as combat readiness, while highlighting the USS BATAAN's 12 battlestars. Bamboo alludes to the tropics and Pacific Theater where the first USS BATAAN served.
Crest: The wings represent the aviation heritage of the ship. The gold stars are for the seven battle stars earned during the Korean conflict, while the five points of the central star are for World War II Battle stars. The black mount suggests the mountainous terrain of Korea; the sun is adapted from the Seal of the Republic of the Philippines.
Supporters: The swords represent the Navy - Marine Corps Team.
Motto: "Courage, Commitment, Honor" are the Navy's core values.
||U.S. Navy USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6, Revolutionary Gator), amphibious assault ship emblem (crest)|
Dark blue and gold are the colors traditionally used by the United States Navy. The red, white, and blue shield reflects our national colors and suggests the coat of arms of the United States. The six red stripes represent the ship's hull number as well as the six coins placed beneath the mast during mast stepping; red being the color of valor and sacrifice. The gold fleur-de-lis highlights the heritage of the first ship BONHOMME RICHARD.
The King of France gave an armed ship to the American cause in 1779 which was placed under the command of John Paul Jones. Jones wanted a name with meaning for Americans and French alike, so he selected the pen name of Ben Franklin (then the U.S. Ambassador to France), and named the ship BONHOMME RICHARD in his honor. With this ship, John Paul Jones went on to defeat the British warship SERAPIS in one of the most famous sea battles in American history. The wreath of two green laurel branches symbolizes honor and high achievment commemorating the two previous ships carrying the name BONHOMME RICHARD.
The eagle, overlooking the fleur-de-lis, adapted from historic flags and documents of the Revolutionary era, symbolizes the fighting spirit, patriotic fervor, and tenacity of both John Paul Jones and the United States Navy. The eagle is flanked by six gold stars representing the battle stars earned by the second BON HOMME RICHARD during World War II and the Korean War underscoring the heritage and continuing resolve of the fighting Navy. The chief is blue with a wavy edge suggesting a shoreline and reflecting the amphibious mission of the BONHOMME RICHARD.
The trident is emblematic of sea prowess and power from the sea; It has wings to commemorate the second BON HOMME RICHARD, an aircraft carrier and the three tines further represent the three areas of that ships sea battle service: World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. The trident is scarlet, a color traditionally used by the United States Marine Corps, and highlights action and zeal thus underscoring the ship's assault and battle insertion mission combining the land, sea, and air elements of the fighting force. The trident, synergistically combined with the crossed U.S. Navy and Marine swords, symbolizes combat readiness and teamwork highlighting the current LHD's potent amphibious and heliborne assault capabilities in the deployment of forces ashore.
||U.S. Navy USS Boxer (LHD-4), amphibious assault ship emblem (crest)|
Shield: The United States is symbolized by the colors of the field and by the bald eagle, wings outspread beyond the shield to denote the scope, beyond the shield to denote the scope, beyond her own shore, of the U.S. influence for stability in affairs worldwide. The border signifies unity and cooperation. The gold has been chosen for its universal symbolism of excellence.
Swords: The Naval Officer’s and Marine Mameluke are crossed diagonally, representing strength and cooperation.
Crest: The star of six points represents all the ships named Boxer; the octagon charged with a gold star recalls the eight battle stars won by Boxer (CV 21) during the conflict in Korea, symbolized by the taeguk that bears the star; and the laurel wreath represents honor and the maintenance and pursuit of peace.
||U.S. Navy USS Essex (LHD-2), amphibious assault ship emblem|
Shield: The gold line joining the blue of the Navy and the scarlet of the Marine Corps shows the unity of the two services. The gold border shows the unity required of amphibious operations. The 2 stands for LHD 2.
Crest: The bald eagle with a shield on its breast is representative of the eagle used in the coat of arms of the fourth ship to bear the name USS ESSEX. The Marine officer’s sword grasped in the eagle’s talons is showing that the embarked Marine units are USS ESSEX’s main battery. The red banner stands for sacrifice and valor required to win the thirteen battle stars in World War II and the four in the Korean War. The Black color for the motto is meant to stand out for all to read and heed. The white border on the banner and the white stars symbolize the purity of cause for which the ship serves and the stars were won.
Motto: The motto refers to the notice that went out to people of Essex County, Massachusetts, to raise funds for the building of the first ESSEX.
Supporters: The amphibious insignia over the Pacific Ocean symbolizes amphibious operations from the oceans of the world.
Chain: The gold chain surrounded by the five-sided coat of arms represents the five naval ships to bear the name ESSEX.
||U.S. Navy USS Iwo Jima (LHD-7), amphibious assault ship emblem (crest)|
SHIELD: Celeste on a mount Sable issuing from base the United States Marine Corps War Memorial Proper, in base three pheons radiating Or one to base superimposed by a plate bearing a Hero’s boiler Sable.
CREST: From a wreath Or and Celeste a wreath of palm Vert superimposed by an osprey stooping Proper.
MOTTO: A scroll Or fimbriated Gules inscribed “UNCOMMON VALOR” Azure.
SUPPORTERS: A United States Navy and Marine Officer’s sword saltirewise points down Proper.
The coat of arms emblazoned upon a white oval enclosed by a blue collar edged on the outside with gold rope and inscribed “USS IWO JIMA” above and “LHD 7” below in gold.
SHIELD: Iwo Jima was the site of one of the most important and most bitterly fought amphibious operations of World War II in the Pacific theater. The United States Marine Corps War Memorial is based on the famous photograph of the flag raising on Mount Suribachi on Iwo Jima and has become a symbol of valor and strength. The three pheons represent the amphibious triad: The Landing Craft Air Cushion, The Advanced Amphibious Assault Vehicle and the Osprey Tilt rotor aircraft. The light blue reflects the seas of the world. The USS IWO JIMA, one of the last ships propelled by steam boilers, is reflected by the white disc with the Hero’s boiler.
CREST: USS Iwo Jima will be among the first LHDs to deploy with the Osprey MV-22 tilt rotor aircraft. This is symbolized by the attacking Osprey. The previous USS Iwo Jima (LPH-2) was a helo-carrier during the Vietnam Era. The palm fronds commemorate the previous ship named Iwo Jima and its service in Vietnam.
MOTTO: The motto is based on Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz’s words when he spoke eloquently of the sailors and marines who fought at Iwo Jima: “Among the Americans who served on Iwo Island uncommon valor was a common virtue.” The red is emblematic of valor and sacrifice.
SUPPORTERS: The crossed swords highlight cooperation and represent the Navy-Marine Corps Team.
||U.S. Navy USS Kearsarge (LHD-3), amphibious assault ship emblem (crest)|
Shield: Blue and gold are colors traditionally associated with the Navy and symbolize the sea and excellence. The green chevron suggests Kearsarge Mountain. A green peaked mountain in New Hampshire. The amphibious nature of the combat operations of the present USS KEARSARGE is represented by green and blue, alluding land and sea. The arrowheads, together with the white chevronel which represents a shore line, allude to assault landings. The stars commemorate the battle stars the third KEARSARGE received for Korean War and Vietnam War service.
Crest: The wings symbolize the aviation capabilities of both the present and the third KEARSARGE; they are gold for the honor and achievement. The white anchor recalls the round the world cruise of the second KEARSARGE of the Great White Fleet in 1907 and denotes the naval prowess of the USS KEARSARGEs. The blue and gray wavy bar highlights the Civil War service for the first USS KEARSARGE.
Supporters: The swords are crossed to denote cooperation and teamwork as well as the combined combat mission of the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps.
||U.S. Navy USS Makin Island (LHD-8), amphibious assault ship emblem (crest)|
SHIELD: Argent, below an arc of five mullets Azure, a demi-trident issuing from base surmounted on the shaft by the World War II Marine Raider patch Proper; a bordure of the first.
CREST: From a wreath Argent and Azure a double-headed phoenix of the like rising from flames Proper, overall issuing pilewise from the wreath four lightning bolts of the first; between the wing tips a mullet inverted Celeste charged with a cross paty convexed Or.
MOTTO: A tripartite scroll Azure edged Gules, doubled and inscribed with “GUNG HO” Argent.
SUPPORTERS: Four swords, two and two saltirewise points down Proper. On dexter side a USN CPO cutlass and USN Officer’s sword; on sinister side a USMC Officer’s sword and USMC NCO sword.
SEAL: The coat of arms in full color as in the blazon upon a White background and enclosed with a Dark Blue oval border on the outside with a Gold rope and bearing the inscription “USS MAKIN ISLAND” above and “LHD 8” in base all Gold.
SHIELD: USS MAKIN ISLAND (LHD 8) is named for a daring raid carried out by Marine Raider Companies A and B. Second Raider Battalion (Carlson’s Raiders) on Japanese held Makin Island on August 17-18, 1942 and for the USS MAKIN ISLAND (CVE 93), a Casablanca class escort aircraft carrier which served during World War II from 1944-1946. Dark blue alludes to the sea, the theater of Naval operations and gold is for excellence. Scarlet refers to the U.S. Marine Corps. The shield border shape and thickness symbolize Makin Island, the atoll in the Gilbert Islands and honors the 30 Marine Raiders who gave the ultimate sacrifice for their country there. The five stars commemorate the five battle stars awarded to CVE-93 during World War II. The Raider Crest, a blue shield with skull and five stars in the shape of the Southern Cross commemorates Marine Raider Companies A and B, Second Raider Battalion. The trident, symbol of sea prowess, with its three tines represents the future contributions of USS MAKIN ISLAND (LHD 8), its associated Expeditionary Strike Group, and USMC main battery in the air, across the surface, and under the sea. The trident also symbolizes the contributions that were made in the areas of Sea Power by the Second Raider Battalion and USS MAKIN ISLAND (CVE 93).
CREST: The inverted blue star honors SSGT Thomason, who distinguished himself during the Makin Island Raid and was the first enlisted U.S. Marine to be awarded the MEDAL OF HONOR in World War ll. The embedded stylized cross alludes to the Navy Cross and commemorates the 23 awarded to Carlson’s Raiders after Makin Island. The Phoenix is the symbol of transformation and new beginnings. It has two heads, one looking to the past and the other to the future representing Makin Island’s role as the transformational bridge between the LHD class and the next generation of amphibious capital ships. The flames and lightning bolts below the Phoenix symbolize the rebirth of amphibious capital ships with Gas Turbines, Electric Drive and all electric auxiliaries. In the wreath below the flames, blue represents the U.S. Navy and the United States. White represents integrity and loyalty. The two colors interwoven in the rope represent how these two responsibilities are forever intertwined.
SUPPORTERS: A USN Officer’s Sword, 1917 Naval NCO Cutlass, USMC Officer’s Mameluke and a 1840 USMC NCO Sword were chosen to represent the teamwork required of Officer and Enlisted , Navy and Marine Corps for USS MAKIN ISLAND (LHD 8) to accomplish her mission.
MOTTO: “GUNG HO” was the Battle Cry of the Second Raider Battalion and the Motto of USS MAKIN ISLAND (CVE 93). “GUNG HO” translated means “WORK TOGETHER”.
||U.S. Navy USS Wasp (LHD-1), amphibious assault ship emblem (crest)|
SHIELD: Dark blue and gold are the traditional colors. Blue alludes to the sea, the theater of Naval operations. Gold is for excellence. The chevron, a traditional symbol for support, represents the amphibious assault mission of the ship. It resembles a wave move to shore and refers to the deployment of men, women and cargo. The wings highlight USS WASP's aviation heritage and capabilities. The modern ship with crossed officer sword and enlisted cutlass adapted from the surface warfare emblems represents leadership, teamwork and the ship's mission in surface operations. The pile of a sharp pointed "V" shape is expressive of assault, combat readiness and victory.
CREST: The Wasp, with its well-developed wings and ability to administer painful stings, epitomizes quick striking power. The stars recall two of the previous USS WASP's CV-7 and CV18, aircraft carriers that earned two and eight battle stars respectively for World War II service. The red disc or sun refers to World War II Japan and the Pacific Theater where these aircraft carriers saw heavy combat action. The tridents are symbolic of sea power and weaponry.
MOTTO: On an azure-edged scroll are the words: "Honor, Tradition, Excellence"
The counter-change of colors emphasizes the ship's capability to integrate sea, air and land combat missions to make an amphibious assault. The shield is divided into nine sections honoring the nine previous ships named "WASP."