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USNS SGT William R. Button (T-AK 3012)

- Military Sealift Command -
- formerly MV SGT William R. Button (T-AK 3012) -

no coat of arms

Serving as alternate flagship for Maritime Prepositioning Ship Squadron (MPSRON) 3, USNS SGT WILLIAM R. BUTTON is the fifth ship in the 2ND LT JOHN P. BOBO - class of Cargo Ships. The ship carries a full range of Marine Corps cargo, enough cargo to support a Marine Air Ground Task Force for 30 days. Additionally, the SGT WILLIAM R. BUTTON has lift-on/lift-off capabilities as well as roll-on/roll-off capabilities. Navy lighterage carried onboard consists of causeways, both powered and unpowered, and small boats to move them around.

The SGT WILLIAM R. BUTTON usually participates in at least one major Maritime Prepositioning Force exercise per year. Since 1985, the MV SGT WILLIAM R. BUTTON had been under long-term lease to Military Sealift Command from American Overseas Marine. On January 16, 2007, the Military Sealift Command purchased the ship, making her USNS SGT WILLIAM R. BUTTON.

General Characteristics:Keel laid: November 1984
Christened: May 1986
Delivered: June 1986
Builder: General Dynamics, Quincy, Massachusetts
Propulsion system: 2 Stork-Wartsilia Werkspoor 16TM410 diesels; 27,000 hp sustained; 1 shaft, bow thruster; 1,000 hp
Propellers: one
Length: 672.6 feet (205 meters)
Beam: 106 feet (32.3 meters)
Draft: 29.5 feet (9 meters)
Displacement: approx. 44,330 tons full load
Speed: 18 knots
Aircraft: helicopter platform only (certified to land up to CH-53E helicopters)
Armament: none
  • 162,500 sq. ft. vehicle
  • 1,605,000 gallons petroleum
  • 81,700 gallons water
  • 522 TEU
Crew: 30 civilians and 25 civilian maintenance
Homeport: not assigned

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Crew List:

This section contains the names of sailors who served aboard USNS SGT WILLIAM R. BUTTON. It is no official listing but contains the names of sailors who submitted their information.

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About the Ship's Name:

Sgt. William R. Button, USMC, born Dec. 3, 1895, in St. Louis, Mo., earned a U.S. Marine Corps Medal of Honor for his actions in Haiti on Oct. 31, 1919, while assigned to the U.S. Marine Corps' Constabulary Detachment.


For extraordinary heroism and conspicuous gallantry and intrepidity in actual conflict with the enemy near Grande Riviere, Republic of Haiti, on the night of 31 October - 1 November 1919, resulting in the death of Charlemagne Peralte, the supreme bandit chief in the Republic of Haiti, and the killing, capture and dispersal of about 1,200 of his outlaw followers. Corporal William R. Button not only distinguished himself by his excellent judgement and leadership but also unhesitatingly exposed himself to great personal danger when the slightest error would have forfeited not only his life but the lives of the detachments of Gendarmerie under his command. The successful termination of his mission will undoubtedly prove of untold value to the Republic of Haiti.

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The photos below were taken by me and show the USNS SGT WILLIAM R. BUTTON arriving at Bremerhaven, Germany, on May 15, 2018.

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