HS KOUNTOURIOTIS (F 462)
The shield of the ship depicts an anchor and a serpent, a cross and a lancet javelin with a flag, which are placed on an inverted crescent moon. The flag, from the HN sign, corresponded to the letter "Z" and meant "SAIL INDEPENDENTLY". It was raised by Admiral Pavlos Kountouriotis, on his flagship (battleship "AVEROF"), during the Battle of Greece, near the homonymous cape at the entrance of the Dardanelles (December 3, 1912). The phrase that appears under the crescent moon, "I SAIL METH' ORMIS AKATHEKTOU", is contained in the signal sent by the Admiral to the Minister of the Navy. The cross and crescent symbolize the victory of the Orthodox Greek nation over the Ottomans.
HS KOUNTOURIOTIS (F-462) is the sixth standard frigate of the Hellenic Navy (HS ELLI, HS LIMNOS, HS ADRIAS, HS AEGEAN, HS NAVARINON, HS KOUNTOURIOTIS). It was built at the KONINKLIJKA MAATSCHAPPIJ DE SCELDE shipyard in Vlissingen, The Netherlands, and joined the Dutch Navy on 26 October 1978. It was acquired by the Hellenic Navy in 1997 and the hoisting of the Greek flag took place at DEN HEDER in the Netherlands on December 15, 1997 with Lieutenant Commander D. Elefsiniotis H.N. Sailed to Greece on April 6, 1998.
HS KOUNTOURIOTIS is the fourth ship of the Hellenic Navy to bear this name. The first one, a Light Cruiser similar to the English-style CHATΗAM, was ordered in English shipyards in 1914.
The second one, a DARDO (H 07) destroyer, was one of the four Destroyers (KOUNTOURIOTIS, HYDRA, SPETSAI, PSARA) ordered by the Greek government to the Italian shipyards in 1933 and received in 1933.
The third one, a GEARING FRAM I (D-213) Destroyer fleet, began construction on 2 May 1945 by the Bethlehem Steel shipyard in Quincy, USA. She was launched on 21 September 1945 and joined the US Navy on 8 March 1946 under the name USS RUPERTUS DD851. She was received by the Hellenic Navy on July 10, 1973 in San Diego, California, USA, with Lieutenant Commander P. Elefsinioti H.N. as her first Commander, and sailed to Greece on March 23, 1974. It was decommissioned in 1995.
The name HS KOUNTOURIOTIS was given to the ship to honor Admiral PAVLOS KOUNTOURIOTIS who, aboard the L/C AVEROF and holding the position of Fleet Commander-in-Chief, victoriously led the Greek fleet in the naval battles of ELLI (December 3, 1912) and LIMNOS (January 5, 1913) and neutralized the Ottoman threat in the Aegean.
PAVLOS KOUNTOURIOTIS was born in Hydra in 1855, joined the Hellenic Navy in 1874 and graduated from the Hellenic Naval Academy in 1878. On July 8, 1911, he received the Commander of the L/C AVEROF which sailed from England on August 20 and sailed to Faliro on September 1, 1911 where he was enthusiastically received. Shortly before the first Balkan War, he was promoted to Commander-in-Chief of the Aegean Fleet. PAVLOS KOUNTOURIOTIS served as Minister of the Navy with the government of Eleftherios Venizelos. In 1920 he was awarded the rank of Admiral and in 1926 he occupied the office of President of the Republic. In 1927 a murderous attempt was made against him in which he was slightly injured. He died on August 21, 1935 at the age of 80.