NORFOLK, Va. - More than 5,000 sailors serving in the Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group (IKECSG) are scheduled to arrive at their homeports in Norfolk, Va., and Mayport, Fla., July 3, just in time for Independence Day celebrations.
USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) and embarked squadrons of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 7, along with the guided-missile cruiser USS Hue City (CG 66), are returning following five months of operations in the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility.
IKECSG ships USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109), USS Farragut (DDG 99) and USS Winston S. Churchill (DDG 81) returned in March after completing operations in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility.
Commanded by Rear Adm. Michael M. Gilday, IKECSG is comprised of Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 8, USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69), embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 7, embarked Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 28, and USS Hue City (CG 66). Aircraft squadrons of CVW-7 include strike fighter squadrons VFA-143 “Pukin Dogs,” VFA-131 “Wildcats,” VFA-83 “Rampagers” and VFA-103 “Jolly Rogers,” tactical electronics warfare squadron VAQ-140 “Patriots,” carrier airborne early warning squadron VAW-121 “Bluetails,” Fleet Logistics Support Squadron VRC-40 “Rawhides” and helicopter anti-submarine squadron HS-5 “Nightdippers.”
While deployed, IKECSG served in the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility, conducting maritime security operations, theater security cooperation efforts, and missions in support of Operation Enduring Freedom.