The USS Stockdale (DDG-106) was commissioned in April 2009 in Santa Barbara, California. The man for whom the destroyer is named, Vice Admiral James Bond Stockdale, left the U.S. Navy an inspiring legacy. During the Vietnam War, he was the senior ranking prisoner-of-war officer at the Hoa Lo Camp, Hanoi, better known as the Hanoi Hilton.
Then-Commander Stockdale was a devotee of Epictetus, the eminent Greek philosopher. Stockdale had admired him since studying Stoic philosophy at Stanford University, from which he earned a master's degree in International Relations and Marxist Theory in 1962. Epictetus' Stoicism is the key to understanding Stockdale's character, focus, and determination. His later writings and speeches frequently cited the Stoic philosopher as he sought to explain his success as the leader of the POW population in the Hanoi Hilton for more than seven years (1965-73).