May is Military Appreciation Month Thank you for your service
Heading for home!
SOUTH CHINA SEA (May 8, 2015) The aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), the guided-missile destroyer USS Gridley (DDG 101), the guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG 52), and Malaysian frigate KD Lekir (FSG 26) participate in a bi-lateral training exercise, aimed at developing and expanding bi-lateral exercises with the Malaysian Royal Navy. The Carl Vinson Strike Group is deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. U.S. Navy photo by MC2 John Philip Wagner, Jr.
Team Vinson departs U.S. 7th Fleet
by MC1 Travis S. Alston
USS CARL VINSON, At Sea (May 23, 2015) (NNS) -- Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group with embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17 departed the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations (AOR) after supporting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, May 23.
Vinson is currently transiting to her homeport in San Diego following an almost 10-month deployment to the Western Pacific and Arabian Gulf. While in 7th Fleet, Team Vinson participated in various bi-lateral training events with Malaysian air and surface units, hosted several groups of distinguished visitors, including a group from India and Sri Lanka, and enjoyed port visits in Perth, Australia; Phuket, Thailand and Bali, Indonesia.
"During our time in the 7th Fleet Area of Responsibility we were able to strengthen the partnership between the U.S. Navy and the Royal Malaysian military," said Rear Adm. Chris Grady, Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group commander. "The exercises we conducted in the South China Sea enhanced the interoperability of our forces and reaffirms our commitment to the Asia-Pacific region."
Having been deployed for nearly 10 months, some Team Vinson members are set to depart the ship in Hawaii to reunite with their loved ones ahead of the ship returning to homeport. This will assist ship leadership in providing accommodation arrangements for the many crew member friends and family riding the ship from Hawaii to San Diego during the Tiger Cruise.
"Although I would love the opportunity to witness and participated in all the homecoming festivities, I decided to depart in Hawaii and fly home to my family," said Yeoman 2nd Class Tio Lathen.
"This is not my first deployment, but has definitely been one of the more rewarding ones. I was able to accomplish a lot and took advantage of the time spent at sea."
USS Carl Vinson enters the U.S. 3rd Fleet area of operations in support of maritime security operations and theater security cooperation, May 23.
Cruiser USS Chancellorsville will homport shift to Yokosuka, Japan
San Diego will say sayonara to the Chancellorsville.
The cruiser will home port shift to Yokosuka, Japan, in the summer of 2015 from San Diego, Pacific Fleet.
The move is "part of the U.S. Navy's long-range plan to send the most advanced and capable units to the Asia-Pacific, PACFLT said in a news release.
The cruiser, fresh from its mid-life modernization, is armed with the fleet's most advanced weapons suite: Aegis Baseline 9. That system features improved computing systems that enable better anti-air warfare and sub-hunting systems. The Chancellorsville will be the first Baseline 9 ship to be forward-deployed, PACFLT said.
In November 2013, half a year after the cruiser emerged from its mid-life overhaul, it was struck by a rogue telemetry drone during a targeting exercise. The drone pierced the ship's hull and crippled the new computer central space, which houses the servers and signal processors for Baseline 9.
A Navy investigation blamed the near-miss on the operators and a control glitch, but also faulted the cruiser's then commanding officer for failing to protect the ship, including firing at it with the close-in weapons system.
By June 2014, all of the damages had been repaired, officials said.
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SAN DIEGO (May 23, 2015) - World War II veterans render a hand salute during the parading of the colors to kick off Legacy Week and Memorial Day weekend during a wreath ceremony held aboard the USS Midway Museum. This year's Legacy Week is dedicated to the 200,000 Sailors who called the USS Midway (CV-41) home and the more than 300,000 lives lost in World War II. U.S. Navy photo by MC3 Nolan Kahn.
World War II veterans honored aboard USS Midway
by MC3(SW) Nolan Kahn,
Naval Public Affairs Support Element West, San Diego
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- SAN DIEGO (NNS) - Dozens paid tribute to honor the legacy and sacrifice of the more than 300,000 lives lost in World War II, during the Veteran's Wreath Remembrance Ceremony held aboard the USS Midway.
The event, hosted by the USS Midway Museum, kicked-off the Midway Legacy Week held May 23 to 25.
The museum, housed on the former USS Midway, offers visitors a chance to come aboard the decommissioned aircraft carrier and view various activities, which range from static displays and aircraft restoration to live recordings of veteran oral histories.
"What better way to kick off San Diego's Legacy Week and Memorial Day weekend than to honor those that have risked and lost their lives for the freedoms and privileges that we have in this great country today," said retired Marine Corps Veteran Jack Harkins, Chairman of the United Veterans Council of San Diego County. "Although this event is just going on for a few days, we should be offering thanks and honoring them for generations to come."
World War II veterans attended the event and also participated in the wreath ceremony.
"It's truly an honor to stand side-by-side with very decorated World War II veterans and be able to share stories from the fleet," said Aviation Technician Airman James Sinyard, a volunteer from Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 41 (HSM 41). "There is a saying in today's Navy (to) work smarter, not harder and back during World War II they truly worked hard and fought harder."
Steven Hurst, of Bremerton, Wash., said Legacy Week events are a fantastic way to show children and younger generations the USS Midway and to have them walk the ship's deck plates and through a piece of history.
"I am glad that I had the chance to show my children and even learn myself about the life and hardships in the fleet, even though I never served," said Hurst. "I now understand what it would have been like and what it continues to be like to be a part of the United States Navy."
Harkins said Legacy Week and Memorial Day is a time to reflect and deeply appreciate those who serve and risked everything for the great country we live in today.
"It's a privilege and a blessing to have this many guest and visitors come on board to pay tribute and to shake the hands of the service members who desperately fought to keep America and her glory alive," said Harkins. "It's a once in a lifetime opportunity to be a part of something so big."
National Military News
WASHINGTON (May 14, 2015) Sailors of the Year stand at attention at the end of their promotion ceremony at the Navy Memorial. Chief Construction Mechanic Jimie Bartholomew, representing U.S. Navy Reserve, Chief Steel Worker Brenton W. Heisserer, representing U.S. Navy Shore, Chief Boatswain's Mate Joe A. Mendoza, representing U.S. Fleet Forces, and Chief Logistics Specialist Blanca A. Sanchez, representing U.S. Pacific Fleet, were meritoriously advanced from petty officer 1st. class to chief petty officers. U.S. Navy photo by MC2 Eric Lockwood.
Nomination for next Chief of Naval Operations announced
by Chief Mass Communication Specialist Julianne Metzger, Chief of Naval Operations Public Affairs
WASHINGTON (NNS) -- Defense Secretary Ashton Carter announced today during a Pentagon press briefing that he has recommended Adm. John M. Richardson as the next Chief of Naval Operations (CNO). A career submarine officer, Richardson is currently director, Naval Nuclear Propulsion Program. If confirmed, Richardson will replace Adm. Jonathan W. Greenert who has been CNO since September 2011. Greenert will retire this fall after 40 years of naval service.
"John Richardson is one of our finest officers and I have great confidence that he is the right leader for our Navy," said Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus.
Greenert also praised Richardson if confirmed, "Admiral John Richardson is an ideal strategic leader to keep our Navy moving forward," he said.
"He cares about our Sailors, has the background and experience in dealing with tough challenges combined with expert judgment that will guide our Navy well," Greenert continued. "He has played a fundamental role in addressing many of our current and future challenges. I am confident he will ensure our Navy's seapower, now and in the future."
Richardson, 55, hails from Petersburg, Virginia. He graduated with a degree in Physics from the U.S. Naval Academy at Annapolis, Md. in 1982. Richardson also holds Masters Degrees from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, and the National War College.
As one of the Navy's top leaders, Richardson has a broad-based record as an operational commander. Richardson commanded the nuclear attack submarine USS Honolulu (SSN 718), served as a naval aide to the President of the United States, as well as numerous other assignments through his career. Richardson received the prestigious Vice Adm. James Stockdale for inspirational leadership award in 2001, among a long list of personal and unit awards.
San Diego Military News
USS Essex ARG and 15th MEU deploy
From Amphibious Squadron 3 Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- More than 4,500 Sailors and Marines from the Essex Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) departed San Diego for a deployment in support of the Navy's maritime strategy, May 11.
The Essex ARG is comprised of the amphibious assault ship USS Essex (LHD 2), the command ship for Amphibious Squadron (PHIBRON) 3 and the 15th MEU, as well as amphibious dock landing ship USS Rushmore (LSD 47) and the amphibious transport dock ship USS Anchorage (LPD 23), which is embarking upon its maiden deployment.
"The Essex ARG/MEU has conducted a robust training cycle and has become a stronger Navy-Marine Corps team, successfully completing every evolution and certifying with flying colors," said Capt. Clint Carroll, commander, Amphibious Squadron 3. "The Sailors and Marines exemplify the hard work, dedication and unit cohesion necessary for a successful deployment. I am confident we are prepared to face any challenge and meet all missions."
After departing San Diego, Essex ARG will transit to Hawaii Operating Area where they are scheduled to participate in exercise Culebra Koa 2015 which is a U.S. Pacific Fleet training exercise designed to demonstrate and increase joint proficiency in expeditionary operations. The exercise will also serve as additional training for the Essex ARG prior to deployment to the Western Pacific and Arabian Gulf.
While deployed, the ARG/MEU team serves as a sea-based, expeditionary crisis response force capable of conducting amphibious missions across the full range of military operations.
The mission of the Essex ARG is to help provide deterrence, promote peace and security, preserve freedom of the seas and provide humanitarian/disaster response as well as supporting the Navy's Maritime Strategy when forward deployed.
National Military News
Successful test of Electromagnetic Catapult on CVN 78
From PEO Carriers Public Affairs
WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The Navy conducted the first-ever, shipboard, full-speed catapult shots using the Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) aboard the aircraft carrier Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), Naval Sea Systems Command announced May 15.
EMALS is a carrier-based launch system designed to expand the operational capability of the Navy's future carriers to include all current and future planned carrier aircraft. The recent test shots, known as "no-loads" because no aircraft or other loads were attached to the launching shuttle, successfully demonstrated the integrated catapult system. Using electromagnetic technology, the system delivers substantial improvements in system maintenance, increased reliability and efficiency, higher-launch energy capacity, and more accurate end-speed control, with a smooth acceleration at both high and low speeds. By allowing linear acceleration over time, electromagnetic catapults also place less stress on the aircraft.
"This is a very exciting time for the Navy," said Program Executive Officer for Aircraft Carriers Rear Adm. Tom Moore. "For the first time in over 60 years, we've just conducted 22 no load test shots using electricity instead of steam technology."
During the tests, generators within the ship produced an electric pulse, which was passed through power conditioning electronics to linear motors just below the flight deck surface. This energy allowed for the linear motors to propel the launching shuttle down the catapult track in excess of 180 knots before bringing the shuttle to a stop at the end of the track.
The next phase of EMALS testing, scheduled for this summer, will involve launching "dead-loads" off of the bow of CVN 78 into the James River. "Dead-loads" are large, wheeled, steel vessels weighing up to 80,000 pounds to simulate the weight of actual aircraft. The dead-loads will be launched from each catapult using a specific test sequence to verify that the catapult and its components are operating satisfactorily.
To date PCU Gerald R. Ford is 90 percent complete and 1550 Sailors have reported for introduction and training. CVN 78 will be commissioned in March 2016.
San Diego Military News
U.S. 3rd Fleet participates in Exercise Ardent Sentry 2015
by Lt. Ken Hagihara, NR Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet participated in training exercise Ardent Sentry 15 (AS15), May 11-15.
A Joint Exercise Program (JEP) led by North American Aerospace Defense (NORAD) and U.S. Northern Command (USNORTHCOM), AS15 is conducted primarily as an exercise focused on defense support of civil authorities (DSCA).
AS15 provides a highly complex, integrated training environment where federal, state and local emergency responders practice the procedures and validate the processes that would be implemented during times of crisis or emergency. The exercise simulated a catastrophic magnitude 7.8 earthquake that impacted eight Southern California counties.
According to Lt. Cmdr. Todd Stansfield, U.S. 3rd Fleet Maritime Command Element (MCE) future operations officer, 3rd Fleet served as the command element for all naval forces responding to the disaster simulated during AS15.
Addressing the role of 3rd Fleet in support of the overall DSCA mission, he explained, "We are responsible for the planning, exercising, and execution of disaster response operations in support of FEMA in California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska, and Hawaii."
Stansfield said the 3rd Fleet MCE team supporting AS15 was comprised of DSCA-trained active duty and reserve personnel from a wide variety of designators who brought valuable knowledge and expertise to successfully support and execute the requirements in the various exercise scenarios, focused in particular on search and rescue operations.
Other Navy participants included Commander, Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Pacific (HSCWP), Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) 3, Explosive Ordnance Disposal Group (EODGRU) 1, Naval Construction Group (NCG) 1, and Navy Region Southwest (NRSW).
Joint, interagency and international relationships strengthen U.S. 3rd Fleet's ability to respond to crises and protect the collective maritime interests of the U.S. and its allies and partners.