The USNS Bob Hope is a special naval ship that is used to transport military vehicles to trouble spots around the world.
The USNS Bob Hope is named after the famous, deceased American comedian and actor who was well known for supporting and entertaining U.S. military personnel stationed overseas – notably in Vietnam. The USNS Bob Hope is also known as a "T-AKR-300" vessel, and is the lead in her class of vehicle cargo ships. The USNS Bob Hope is used to transport military vehicles such as tanks, trucks and armoured personnel carriers (APCs) all over the world.
The USNS Bob Hope entered service with the U.S. Navy in 1998. It is a large ship at nearly 1,000 feet in length and with 380,000 square feet of capacity. In fact, the ship is big enough to carry all the vehicles and supplies needed to support an Army heavy brigade in combat. The USNS Bob Hope has been used to support the Army in areas such as the Balkans and Iraq.
Crewed by Civilians
Despite its role, the USNS Bob Hope is classified as a "non-combatant" vessel and is crewed by civilian mariners who work under the U.S. Navy’s "Military Sealift Command." The USNS Bob Hope was built in the mid-1990s by Avondale Industries – now part of Northrop Grumman. The ship can travel at a maximum speed of 24 knots and has a helicopter landing area on its deck to help replenish supplies.