US Navy’s Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) returned home to Naval Station Norfolk on September 12 after a nine-month deployment to Europe in response to Russia’s invasion in Ukraine.
On the same day, the US Navy’s Japan-based carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) departed Yokosuka to resume its patrols in the Indo-Pacific.
During its time in the 6th Fleet area of operations, USS Harry S. Truman sailed more than 65,000 nautical miles, all while conducting multiple operations in the region to include enhanced air policing missions, dual and tri-carrier operations, and the NATO-led vigilance activities Neptune Shield 22 and Neptune Strike 22.
“This has been an outstanding deployment by every measure due to the expertise and professionalism of our sailors,” said Capt. Gavin Duff, Truman’s commanding officer. “This deployment was a first of its kind for nearly all of us onboard. I am immensely proud of the tenacity, skill and commitment this crew displayed to our allies, partners and our own leadership. These sailors are the soul of this ship, and I can think of no greater honor than to be part of this team.”
After previous years of limited port activity due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Truman was able to conduct visits in Souda Bay, Greece; Split, Croatia; Trieste and Naples, Italy; Marseille, France; and Palma De Mallorca, Spain.
The Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group had the opportunity to participate in numerous training exercises and activities, integrating seamlessly with NATO allies and partners with a focus on interoperability operations.
“The Truman and our embarked air wing are the central pillar of the strike group,” said Rear Adm. Paul Spedero Jr., commander, Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 8. “The carrier isn’t just a weapon of war, it is a symbol of American commitment and attention – one that has been focused on reassuring our NATO Allies and other European partners of our commitment to peace, stability, and cooperation. The Sailors of Truman and Carrier Air Wing 1 have proven our nation’s resolve through their professionalism and dedication.”
In addition to the guided-missile destroyers USS Cole (DDG 67), USS Bainbridge (DDG 96), USS Gravely (DDG 107), and USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109), the strike group also consisted of the Ticonderoga class guided-missile cruiser USS San Jacinto (CG 56).
The strike group also participated in a cooperative deployment with the Royal Norwegian Navy’s Fridtjof-Nansen class frigate HNoMS Fridtjof Nansen (F310), which returned home to Norway in May.
USS Gonzalez (DDG 66) and USS Forrest Sherman (DDG 98) both conducted operations with the HSTCSG and remain deployed.
USS Ronald Reagan’s fall patrol
As the USS Harry S. Truman was preparing to dock at Norfolk, the US Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) got underway to continue their presence mission in the Indo-Pacific region.
Ronald Reagan’s departure on September 12 marked the end of a scheduled-maintenance availability period.
“We’re excited to be back at sea, and are grateful for the excellent support from our maintenance teams ashore,” said Capt. Fred Goldhammer, Ronald Reagan’s commanding officer. “Not only was our completion of scheduled maintenance and in port training beneficial in ensuring the combat readiness of ‘Warship 76,’ but this brief period allowed our crew an opportunity to recharge and reconnect with our families and friends.”
During this routine deployment, Ronald Reagan, its strike group ships, the embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5, Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 5 and Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 15 staffs, will continue working with allies and partners, promote adherence to a rules-based international order, as well as maintain presence and flexibility, the navy said.
During the first part of its 2022 deployment, which took place between May and August, the carrier operated in the South China Sea and the Philippine Sea and took part in major maneuvers, such as the Valiant Shield exercise, a US-only, biennial field training exercise (FTX) focused on integration of joint training in a multi-domain environment.
The Ronald Reagan CSG includes the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Chancellorsville (CG 62), as well as Arleigh Burke-class destroyers USS Barry (DDG 52) and USS Benfold (DDG 65), assigned to DESRON 15.