USS Cowpens – CVL 25 & CG 63
The first USS Cowpens was a WWII aircraft carrier (CVL-25), converted from a light cruiser to an aircraft carrier under the pressure of war.
The “Mighty Moo” was launched on January 17, 1943, exactly 162 years after the Battle of Cowpens. It served in the Fast Carrier Task Force in the Pacific from 1943-45.
During the 22 ½ months that the USS Cowpens served in the war in the South Pacific, she flew 10,634 flights, participated in 2,452 action sorties, destroyed 108 enemy planes in the air, destroyed 198 enemy planes on the ground, dropped 657 tons of bombs, fired 3063 rockets, and sank 39 ships.
George Dean Martin, owner of a drugstore in Cowpens, wrote to President Franklin D Roosevelt suggesting that an aircraft carrier be named for the nearby famous Revolutionary War battle, Cowpens. In those days, carriers were named for battles, so the ship was named USS Cowpens.
The USS Cowpens was decommissioned on Jan 13, 1947. It was awarded twelve Battle Stars and a Navy Unit Commendation for service during World War II.
On March 3, 1989, the US Navy launched the second USS Cowpens CG-63, an Aegis guided missile cruiser of the Ticonderoga class.
Also known as “The Thundering Herd”, the USS Cowpens is one of Seventh Fleet’s finest ships and the epitome of the best of the 21st century United States Navy.
Since commissioning in March 1991, USS Cowpens has set a multitude of records, including an unprecedented run of six consecutive Battle Efficiency awards.
The USS Cowpens is currently assigned to the naval force in Yokosuka, Japan and part of the USS George Washington Battle Group.