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Special Event

Nancy Reagan Speaks at Christening of USS Ronald Reagan

Aired March 4, 2001 - 3:16 p.m. ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

DONNA KELLEY, CNN ANCHOR: And once again, we'll interrupt to take you back to Mrs. Reagan. She has already christened the USS Reagan and she is speaking.

NANCY REAGAN, FRM. FIRST LADY OF THE UNITED STATES: Louder? Did you say louder?

(LAUGHTER)

REAGAN: Did he say louder?

BILL FRICKS, PRESIDENT AND CEO, NEWPORT NEWS SHIPBUILDING: I don't think so.

REAGAN: Oh, OK. President and Mrs. Bush for coming all this way in this weather, keeping in mind what Senator Allen said about the last time you were here.

(LAUGHTER)

REAGAN: I'll keep these remarks very short. It is true that today is our 49th wedding anniversary.

(APPLAUSE)

REAGAN: I want to thank the Navy for giving us such a wonderful present. Such a little thing. It's very impressive and I'm really very, very grateful and grateful to everybody here at Newport News for all of the hard work they've done.

(APPLAUSE)

REAGAN: And the men and women and the men and women who will sail on the ship, and I meant it when I said God bless them all. And I wish Ronnie were here.

(APPLAUSE)

REAGAN: But somehow, I think he is. Thank you.

(APPLAUSE)

FRICKS: Again, thanks Mrs. Reagan, Mr. President, all of our special guests today for making this a wonderful... KELLEY: Mrs. Nancy Reagan, who is the sponsor and christened the USS Ronald Reagan. They'll call it the Ronald Reagan until it goes into service in two years, as we mentioned. Saying that she wished Ronnie were here, but she said somehow I think he is. And she said it was very impressive and she as grateful for all the work that has been done to put together this $4 billion aircraft carrier. And it will hold 6,000 personnel, 80 aircraft and it's expect to go into operation in the year 2003

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