The US government shutdown did not affect the timetable at Newport News Shipbuilding (NNS) as preparations were being made for the formal christening of the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). It did however, cause the postponement of the official naming ceremony of another high-profile first-of-class construction project, with the christening of the future USS Zumwalt being cancelled. So the destroyer was floated out without fanfare at Bath Iron Works on 28 October 2013.

Ahead of the christening ceremony on 9 November, NNS began flooding the massive dry dock where the aircraft carrier Gerald R. Ford has been under construction since November 2009. The ship was fully floated to test hull integrity before being returned to her keel blocks. Soon afterwards the ship was refloated and moved out to a pier for outfitting. Next in line is the future John F. Kennedy (CVN 79), the keel for which is due to be laid in 2015.

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