Page last updated at 11:26 GMT, Wednesday, 14 October 2009 12:26 UK

'Twin towers' warship sets sail

USS New York
A massive structural beam from the World Trade Center's south tower was used in the ship's construction

A ship built of salvaged steel from the World Trade Center is to be reunited with the city it was named after.

The USS New York embarked on its maiden voyage on Tuesday from Louisiana, where it was built, and is set to arrive in New York harbour on 2 November.

The warship will be welcomed by a formal ceremony to honour those killed in the 11 September 2001 attacks, which destroyed the World Trade Center.

Celebrations end on 7 November with the US Navy's commissioning of the ship.

USS New York
The warship got a patriotic send-off as it sailed down the Mississippi

The bow of the boat contains 7.5 tonnes of melted steel from the fallen buildings.

The ship's crest includes images of the Twin Towers and features the colours of the city departments which first responded to the terrorist attack that killed nearly 3,000 people.

Dedicated work

Thousands of workers helped build the ship at Northrop Grumman Shipbuilding's yard in Avondale, Louisiana.

Deputy project manager Doug Lounsberry said the vessel was important to the builders, not only because it honours those killed in the terrorist attacks, but because workers were hit by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 during the early phases of construction.

"It's like raising a kid," Mr Lounsberry said. "We're sending this one off to college. But after they leave, they remain near and dear to your heart."

Two other ships, the Arlington and the Somerset, which are still under construction, will join the USS New York as 9/11 tributes, said a company spokesman.

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