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Lugar Honored for Lifetime of Service

Former U.S. Sen. Dick Lugar addresses the 2013 Northwest Indiana BusINess and Industry Hall of Fame luncheon at the Radisson Hotel at Star Plaza.

While the life of former six-term U.S. Sen. Dick Lugar, R-Ind., ended April 28, his name soon may be immortalized on an American warship.

U.S. Sen. Todd Young, R-Ind., and U.S. Sen. Mike Braun, R-Ind., are planning to add a provision to the nation's annual defense appropriations legislation directing the secretary of the Navy to name the next Arleigh Burke-class destroyer in honor of Lugar.

The future two-term Indianapolis mayor and longest-tenured Hoosier senator served in the Navy from 1956 to 1960, including a stint as intelligence briefer for Admiral Arleigh Burke.

In the Senate, Lugar spent six years as chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee and led the effort to eliminate the threat posed by the proliferation of nuclear, chemical and biological weapons following the breakup of the Soviet Union.

"At a time when nuclear proliferation was civilization's greatest threat, Senator Lugar helped save the world," Young said.

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"It is fitting that the Navy honor his legacy by naming one of their warships after this dedicated statesman who helped change the course of history."

Burke-class destroyers generally are named to honor "leaders and heroes."

The most recently named ship in that class commemorates former U.S. Sen. Sam Nunn, D-Ga., who partnered with Lugar to enact and oversee the weapons proliferation prevention program commonly known as Nunn-Lugar.

Braun said: "Senator Richard Lugar is a towering figure in Hoosier history, one of the greatest statesmen ever to serve in the U.S. Senate and I'm proud to join Senator Young in renaming a Navy ship in honor of him."

The Hoosier senators and Indiana's entire House delegation also are backing a plan to name an Indianapolis post office for Lugar.

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