USS Gerald R. Ford is the lead ship of her class of United States Navy super carriers. As announced by the U.S. Navy on 16 January 2007, the ship is named after the 38th President of the United States Gerald R. Ford, whose World War II naval service included combat duty aboard the aircraft carrier Monterey in the Pacific Theater. Construction began on 11 August 2005, when Northrop Grumman held a ceremonial steel cut for a 15-ton plate for a side shell of the carrier. She was christened on 9 November 2013. The schedule calls for the ship to join the U.S. Navys fleet in 2016. USS Gerald R. Ford will enter the fleet replacing the inactive USS Enterprise, which ended her 51 years of active service in December 2012.