US Navy destroyer USS Ralph Johnson (DDG 114) arrived to its new forward-deployed location in Yokosuka, October 4, as the newest addition to US 7th Fleet’s forces.
Ralph Johnson is a Flight IIA multi-mission destroyer, capable of embarking two MH-60 variant helicopters with air warfare, submarine warfare, and surface warfare capabilities; designed to operate independently or with carrier strike groups, surface action groups, or amphibious ready groups.
The destroyer is the latest ship to join the Japan-based fleet as part of a broader reorganization plan that has seen four older Arleigh Burke-class destroyers depart their forward-operating base this year.
“Ralph Johnson and her crew look forward to joining the forward-deployed team in Yokosuka and to building relationships with our allies and partners in the region,” said Cmdr. Colin Roberts, commanding officer of USS Ralph Johnson. “It’s an honor to join the DESRON 15 team and an honor to know that Ralph Johnson will play a role in ensuring the future of a free and open Indo-Pacific.”
“Ralph Johnson comes over as one of the newest and most capable destroyers in the US Navy,” said Capt. Chase Sargeant, commander, Task Force 71/Destroyer Squadron 15. “The addition of Ralph Johnson demonstrates our unwavering commitment to maintain maritime security in the Indo-Pacific alongside our alliances and partnerships.”
The destroyer is joining the 7th Fleet after supporting the US Navy’s and the US Missile Defense Agency’s most complex ballistic missile intercept test to date on July 24.
The mission objective was to intercept a raid of two short range ballistic missile targets with four Standard Missile-6 Dual II missiles. Immediately after the test, the navy confirmed of of the ballistic missiles was intercepted by missiles fired by guided-missile destroyer USS Ralph Johnson (DDG 114).