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    USS Nimitz (CVN 68) Returns from Deployment

    Nimitz Returns to Home Port

    Photo By Petty Officer 2nd Class Samuel Osborn | 230702-N-KU796-1232 PUGET SOUND (July 2, 2023) U.S. Navy Sailors man the rails on the...... read more read more



    Courtesy Story

    USS Nimitz (CVN 68)   

    BREMERTON – USS Nimitz (CVN 68) returned to its homeport in Bremerton, Wash. July 2, concluding a seven-month deployment to U.S. 3rd and 7th Fleet areas of operations.

    Nimitz, the flagship for Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 11, dropped off the embarked air wing of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17 at Naval Air Station Coronado June 28 prior to its return to Bremerton. Other ships assigned to CSG-11, including the Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG 52) and Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Decatur (DDG 73) returned to Naval Base San Diego, June 28. The Hawaii-based Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyers USS Chung-Hoon (DDG 93) and USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG 108) returned to homeport on June 20 and 27, respectively.

    “Nimitz Sailors consistently performed with resilience and fortitude in what proved to be a dynamic deployment,” said Capt. Craig Sicola, who as commanding officer led Nimitz through the entirety of deployment to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations. “Each and every Nimitz Sailor should be proud of their accomplishments. Every day of the deployment, our Sailors were relentless in the safe execution of operations. I especially want to thank all our Nimitz families who supported and encouraged our Sailors throughout these seven months.”

    Sicola held his change of command with Capt. Douglas Graber in San Diego on June 29 prior to the aircraft carrier’s return to homeport.

    “I look forward to continuing the tradition of teamwork this crew is known for; it's what carried this accomplished crew through such a successful deployment,” said Graber. “The culture of excellence is everywhere and there is no doubt in my mind that the entire Nimitz family can continue to build on the legacy of this historic warship.”

    While in the U.S. 7th Fleet AO, Nimitz conducted deterrence and presence operations; multinational exercises; integrated multi-domain training; long-range maritime strike exercises; anti-submarine warfare; information warfare operations; air defense operations; multiple ship navigation; and formation maneuvering and refueling-at-sea operations. U.S. 7th Fleet is the U.S. Navy’s largest forward-deployed numbered fleet.

    While underway, Nimitz sailed over 65,000 nautical miles and completed over 14,500 successful aircraft launches and recoveries. CVW-17 flew more than 8,500 fixed and rotary wing sorties and accumulated over 17,000 flight hours.

    Nimitz executed six port calls – Guam; Singapore; Busan, South Korea; Laem Shabang, Thailand; Sasebo, Japan; and Pearl Harbor, Hawaii – and hosted two formal “big top” receptions in South Korea and Thailand. Nimitz embarked hundreds of foreign dignitaries, military officials, ambassadors, and international media, and operated with the joint force and several nations, including Japan, South Korea, Australia, Canada, France, Singapore and the Philippines. Alongside allies and partners, the Nimitz’s presence in U.S. 7th Fleet reinforced the United States’ commitment to fly, sail and operate wherever international law allows in support of a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

    Nimitz – the oldest-serving U.S commissioned aircraft carrier in the world – completed its 350,000th arrested aircraft landing on April 22, 2023 while sailing in the South China Sea. The milestone was piloted in an F/A-18F Super Hornet from the “Fighting Redcocks” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 22 by Sicola and Cmdr. Luke Edwards, commanding officer of VFA-22. Nimitz is the first active U.S. aircraft carrier to reach this milestone.

    Nimitz’s embarked air wing consisted of VFA-22, “Mighty Shrikes” of VFA-94, “Kestrels” of VFA-137, “Blue Diamonds” of VFA-146, “Sun Kings” of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 116, “Cougars” of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 139, “Battlecats” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 73, “Screamin’ Indians” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 6 and “Providers” of Fleet Logistic Support Squadron (VRC) 30.


    Date Taken: 07.02.2023
    Date Posted: 07.03.2023 05:39
    Story ID: 448476

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