BELOIT, Wis. (WTVO) — One of the U.S. Navy’s newest ships has a pretty obvious local connection.

The USS Beloit was christened back in May, and the City had a celebration on Wednesday for those who could not make it a couple of months back. One organizer said that the community has connections to the defense industry in national security, so the USS Beloit is a dedication to the resilience of the small city in the heartland of the country.

“It’s an incredible, tremendous honor for our community to have a Navy ship named after us,” said Sarah Lock, director of strategic communications for the City of Beloit.

Lock said that the City has had a long commitment to serving the military, especially during the World War II conflicts, by contributing to the defense of the nation.

“The City of Beloit is home to Fairbanks Morse Defense, and they have been providing engines to the Navy for over 100 years, which is an incredible track record,” Lock said.

That is why a Wisconsin senator proposed that the USS Beloit be named after the City.

“Most times ships are named after people as opposed to cities and towns,” said Major General Marica Anderson (Ret.) of the U.S. Army.

Anderson, a Beloit native, is the sponsor of the ship. She said that she is excited to be a part of the ship’s life.

“In the life of a ship, there are three major events; The keel laying, which I participated in where I put my initials in a plate that’s inserted into the ship while its being built. Then there’s the christening ceremony which occurred in May where the ship receives its official name that it was designated to have by the Secretary of the Navy, and the very last, after the ship has gone out to sea and they’ve determined that its sea-worthy, there’s a commissioning ceremony that’s even bigger than the christening ceremony, so that’s the life of a ship,” Anderson said.

Anderson is the first Black woman to hold the rank of Major General in the U.S. Army.