Oberstar Honored, Has Vessel Named After Him

Tuesday, March 8th, 2011 at 8:09 am

Former U.S. Rep. James Oberstar is being honored in an unusual way: he will have a Great Lakes ship named after him.

The Duluth News Tribune reports Interlake Steamship Co. is renaming a ship the Hon. James L. Oberstar after the Minnesota Democrat. Oberstar lost his bid for a 19th consecutive term in November when he was defeated by Republican Chip Cravaack.

The ship had previously been named the Charles M. Beeghly, after the former chairman of the board of Jones & Laughlin Steel Corp. The 805-foot ship was built in 1959 and originally was named the Shenango II.

President Mark Barker told the Tribune that Interlake wanted to honor Oberstar, the former chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, because he oftem made the Great Lakes a priority.

The paper also reports that a formal christening ceremony is planned for late May in Duluth.

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