SHIELDPer fess nebuly enhanced, two piles reversed in chief point issuant from dexter and sinister base, Azure and Argent, all counterchanged, in base a compass rose Gules bearing a globe Celeste with grid lines of the second; a bordure of steel Proper.
From a wreath Argent and Azure two steel anchors erect Proper, superimposed by a seahorse rampant of the second gorged with a collar Gules charged with the Roman numerals "XII" Argent, all below an arced rope Proper tied to each anchor ring.
A scroll, with ends behind base of the missiles, Azure doubled Gules and inscribed with "SIVIS PACEM, PARA BELLUM" (IF YOU WANT PEACE, PREPARE FOR THE WAR) Argent.
On either side of the shield is a Sidewinder heat-seeking Missile erect Proper.
The coat of arms as blazoned in full color upon a white oval enclosed by a blue collar edged on the outside with a gold rope bearing the inscription "USNS WILLIAM McLEAN" at top and in base "T-AKE 12" in gold letters.
SHIELDDark blue and gold are the colors traditionally used by the Navy. Gold is also emblematic of honor and high achievement. Blue and white echo the colors of the sea. The nebuly partition line is intended to look like clouds as depicted in heraldry. The two narrow pointed wedge shapes with points going up through the clouds allude to two launched missiles locking in on their target. The counterchanged colors stand for unity and cooperation. The clouds and sky also refer to the aviation capabilities of the USNS WILLIAM McLEAN. The compass rose and globe emphasize the world wide mission of the T-AKE ship. The thick steel border denotes strength and resolve.
The anchors, symbols of sea prowess, with the T-AKE being represented by one and the other, our Naval force. The rope connecting them signifies receiving the steady flow of cargo and ammunition from the T-AKE. The seahorse, strong and dependable, personifies the USNS WILLIAM McLEAN's being a work horse to the Navy providing a steady, secure stream of dry cargo and ammunition. The red of the collar inscribed with XII stands for the zeal and bravery of the mariners aboard T-AKE 12 and the warfighters it services.
The Sidewinder missiles commemorate William McLean, the U.S. Navy physicist who conceived and developed the heat-seeking sidewinder missile.