This citation is given in recognition of RSS Freedom's and RSS Gallant's invaluable contributions and dedicated service to the Republic of Singapore Navy (RSN) and Singapore.
RSS Freedom and RSS Gallant were commissioned on 22 Aug 1998 and 3 May 1997 respectively. They served the RSN with distinction, safeguarding Singapore's maritime security and sovereignty for more than two decades. RSS Freedom and RSS Gallant also flew the RSN's flag high in many foreign exercises, demonstrating the RSN's professionalism and capability.
Through her years of service, RSS Freedom maintained high operational readiness and unit excellence. RSS Freedom was awarded the 182 Squadron Best Ship in the year 2000, just two years after she was commissioned. Two years later, RSS Freedom distinguished herself at the 10th Anniversary of the Indonesia-Singapore Coordinated Patrol, demonstrating the RSN's maritime security capabilities during the Demonstration Exercise, and furthering defence relations with the Indonesian Navy. Operationally, RSS Freedom safeguarded Singapore's sovereignty in highly contested waters off Pedra Branca, including during the lead up to the 2008 International Court of Justice ruling. Amongst her many contributions in Maritime Security, RSS Freedom successfully foiled a sea robbery attempt in 2012. RSS Freedom was also integral to the success of the DPRK-USA Singapore Summit in 2018, undertaking patrol operations to defend the waters surrounding the Summit. True to her motto, 'We will Prevail', RSS Freedom prevailed in operations and exercises, contributing to Singapore's peace and security.
RSS Gallant was equally sterling in her service. RSS Gallant was one of six Anti-Submarine Patrol Vessels from 189 Squadron, forming part of the RSN's early Anti-submarine Warfare (ASW) capability. Over and above her maritime security and sovereignty duties, RSS Gallant also honed her ASW competencies in Fleet until 2005, when 182 and 189 Squadrons merged under then-Coastal Command. In the newly formed 182/9 Squadron, RSS Gallant continued her exceptional performance, attaining Squadron Best Ship twice in 2012 and 2016, and Squadron Best Gun through foreign exercises such as Ex EAGLE INDOPURA 2016 and Ex SEACAT 2017. Operationally, RSS Gallant answered the call to provide Search-and-Rescue assistance to USS John S McCain in 2017, an effort which strengthened trust and friendship between the RSN and USN. Apart from her steadfast resolve enforcing Singapore's sovereignty in waters around Pedra Branca over the years, RSS Gallant also achieved mission success in operations off Tuas in 2018 when entrusted to guard against intrusions into Singapore Territorial Waters. Her brave efforts over her years of service truly live up to her motto, "Gallant Few".
As part of the RSN's 24/7 High Readiness Core, RSS Freedom and RSS Gallant each sailed 314,000 nautical miles - 12 times around the Earth - in defence of our waters and in support of Singapore's defence relations. The magnitude of their contributions is outstanding. This would not have been possible without the unwavering dedication, professionalism, tenacity and sacrifices of many generations of officers and crew who served onboard. The RSN salutes RSS Freedom and RSS Gallant for their faithful service.
RADM YONG WEI HSIUNG
11 December 2020