Home Americas US guided missile cruiser Bunker Hill decommissions after 37 years of service

US guided missile cruiser Bunker Hill decommissions after 37 years of service

Photo: US Navy

USS Bunker Hill (CG 52), the 6th ship of the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruisers, marked the conclusion of over 37 years of naval service during a decommissioning ceremony at Naval Base San Diego on September 22.

The USS Bunker Hill (CG 52) was a guided-missile cruiser in the US Navy, built by Ingalls Shipyard Company in Pascagoula, Mississippi, and commissioned on Sept. 20, 1986.

CG 52 was the first US surface warship equipped with the MK 41 Vertical Launching System (VLS), located below deck, a multi-warfare missile-launching system capable of targeting objects in the air, on or under the ocean surface, and on land.

Bunker Hill served in the North Arabian Sea and Gulf of Oman, supported 10 Earnest Will convoys in 1987, and relocated to Naval Base Yokosuka, Japan the next year. In January 1991, it launched 28 Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles (TLAMs) in the North Arabian Gulf during Operation Desert Storm, also supporting Operations Desert Shield.

In 2008, it was part of a Coalition task force off the east coast of Africa due to events in Somalia. The year after, it became the first cruiser to undergo Navy upgrades, including a new Aegis Weapons System, Cooperative Engagement Capability (CEC), and SPQ-9B Radar. In 2010, it rushed to Haiti to aid earthquake relief efforts.

The first and second U.S. Navy ships named Bunker Hill pay tribute to the Battle of Bunker Hill, a pivotal moment in the Revolutionary War for the American army. Occurring in 1775, this battle saw American patriots defending Breed’s Hill in Charlestown, Massachusetts, against British forces determined to secure control of Boston’s vital harbor.