A Navy officer who survived North Korea’s 2010 sinking of the South Korean warship Cheonan took the helm of a new frigate named after the ill-fated corvette, the Navy said Monday.
The FFG-826 Daegu-class frigate was named after the ROKS Cheonan, which sank in the Yellow Sea after the North Korean torpedo attack in March 2010, killing 46 sailors.
Commander Park Yeon-soo, who served as the operations officer on the Cheonan, became the commanding officer of the ROKS Cheonan frigate during an inauguration ceremony at the 2nd Fleet in Pyeongtaek, 70 kilometers south of Seoul.
Park said he feels great responsibility for commanding the naval ship named after the Cheonan, vowing to safeguard the Yellow Sea and the Northern Limit Line, a de-facto maritime sea border.
“Returning with a more powerful Cheonan, I will meticulously command our members to firmly defend the Yellow Sea and NLL with a sense of pride and honor,” Park said, after paying his respects at the memorial for 46 fallen sailors at the 2nd Fleet.
The 2,800-ton class warship was officially commissioned into service last month for missions in the tensely guarded Yellow Sea amid heightened tension with North Korea.
It is 122 meters long and can reach 55 kilometers per hour, equipped with a helicopter, short-range surface-to-air missiles and tactical surface launch missiles. (Yonhap)