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USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker: April 9, 2018

USNI News Graphic

The USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker is sponsored by CNA. These are the approximate positions of the U.S. Navy’s deployed carrier strike groups and amphibious ready groups throughout the world as of April 9, 2018, based on Navy and public data. In cases where a CSG or ARG is conducting disaggregated operations, the map reflects the location of the capital ship.

Total U.S. Navy Battle Force:

282

Ships Underway

Deployed Ships Underway Non-deployed Ships Underway Total Ships Underway
50 23 73

Ships Deployed by Fleet

Fleet Forces 3rd Fleet 4th Fleet 5th Fleet 6th Fleet 7th Fleet Total
0 2 2 16 17 56 93

In the Middle Pacific

Quartermaster 3rd Class Alexis Brown uses a sextant for celestial navigation aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) on April, 3 2018. US Navy Photo

The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group is headed for home after completing its second deployment in as many years to the Western Pacific. The CSG has chopped into the U.S. 3rd Fleet area of responsibility.

USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) was in the Western Pacific at a time the Navy’s only permanently forward-deployed aircraft carrier is moored in its homeport of Yokosuka, Japan, for a planned maintenance period that Navy officials say is expected to last a couple of months.

Carrier Strike Group 1

An F/A-18E Super Hornet assigned to the Kestrels of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 137 makes an arrested landing on the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) on April 4, 2018. US Navy Photo

Carrier Air Wing 2

CVW 2 is embarked aboard Carl Vinson and includes nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Bounty Hunters” of Strike Fighter Squadrons (VFA) 2 from Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif.
  • The “Blue Blasters” of VFA-34 from Naval Air Station Oceania, Va.
  • The “Kestrels” of VFA-137 from Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif.
  • The “Golden Dragons” of VFA-192 from Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif.
  • The “Gauntlets” of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 136 from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Black Eagles” of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 113 from Naval Air Station Point Mugu, Calif.
  • The “Providers” of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) 30 from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Black Knights” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 4 from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Blue Hawks” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM 78) from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.

Destroyer Squadron 1
The leadership of DESRON 1 is embarked aboard Carl Vinson and commands the CSG’s guided-missile destroyers.

  • USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG-108), homeported in San Diego, Calif.
  • USS Michael Murphy (DDG-112), homeported in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii

Guided-missile Cruiser
USS Lake Champlain (CG-57), homeported in San Diego, Calif.

The Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Bremerton (SSN -98) returned from deployment on April 6 to its homeport of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Bremerton completed a six-month deployment while conducting operations in support of national security.

In the Western Pacific

Sailors and Marines with the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group do flutter kicks on the flight deck of the USS Wasp (LHD-1). US Marine Corps Photo

USS Ronald Reagan (CVN-76) is in port in Yokosuka, Japan, for a selected restricted availability that began in January.

Amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD-1) – with Marines and sailors of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit – just wrapped up the Ssang Yong “Twin Dragon” Exercise with South Korea on Sunday.

Wasp, along with dock landing ship USS Ashland (LSD-48) and amphibious transport dock USS Green Bay (LPD-20), make up the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group.

USS Sterett (DDG-104) and USS Dewey (DDG-105) are on a scheduled deployment to conduct operations in the Indo-Pacific region. They will also support the Wasp Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) in order to advance U.S. Pacific Fleet’s Up-Gunned ESG concept and will train with forward-deployed amphibious ships across all mission areas.

USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6) is operating with Wasp.

“U.S. and partner nation service members participating in Pacific Partnership 2018 arrived in Bengkulu, Indonesia, aboard the U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH-19) on March 29. The mission in Bengkulu will continue through April 12 and will feature mission personnel working side-by-side with Indonesian medical professionals, participating in civil engineering projects, conducting humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HA/DR) readiness drills, and partnering in community outreach engagements in the local Bengkulu community,” reads a statement from the Navy.

This mission includes year’s mission includes personnel from the United States, Canada, United Kingdom, Australia, France, Peru, and Japan. Mercy will also make mission stops in Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Vietnam and Japan.

In the South China Sea

Aviation Ordnanceman Airman Christopher Shaw, right, and Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class Jordan Montesano stand watch aboard the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt on April 4, 2018. US Navy Photo

The Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group (CSG) transited the Strait of Malacca on April 1 and visited Singapore from April 2 through 6. The CSG is now in the South China Sea where it has been conducting operations with the Republic of Singapore Navy.

Carrier Strike Group 9

Sailors move aircraft from an elevator into the hangar bay of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) on April 8, 2018. US Navy Photo

Aircraft carrier:
USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71), homeported in San Diego, Calif.

Carrier Air Wing 17
CVW 17 is embarked aboard Theodore Roosevelt and includes nine squadrons and detachments:

  • The “Stingers” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 113 from Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif.
  • The “Mighty Shrikes” of VFA-94 from Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif.
  • The “Redcocks” of VFA-22 from Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif.
  • The “Checkerboards” of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 312 from Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, S.C.
  • The “Cougars” of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 139 from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Wash.
  • The “Sun Kings” of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 116 from Naval Air Station Point Mugu, Calif.
  • The “Providers” of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) 30 from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Indians” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 6 from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.
  • The “Battlecats” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 73 from Naval Air Station North Island, Calif.

Destroyer Squadron 23
The leadership of DESRON 23 is embarked aboard Theodore Roosevelt and commands the CSG’s guided-missile destroyers.

  • USS Sampson (DDG-102), homeported in Everett, Wash.
  • USS Preble (DDG-88), homeported in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii
  • USS Halsey (DDG-97), homeported in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii

Guided-missile Cruiser
USS Bunker Hill (CG-52), homeported in San Diego, Calif.

In the Gulf of Aden

Marines attached to the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit exercise on the flight deck as the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) passes through a sandstorm on March 29, 2018. US Navy Photo

USS Iwo Jima (LHD-7) ARG transited the Suez Canal March 27 and entered the 5th Fleet area of responsibility. An AV-8B Harrier and a CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter, both from the 26th MEU, crashed in the Djibouti on April 3 as exercise Alligator Dagger was getting started. The exercise was cancelled after these two mishaps.

The Iwo Jima ARG, with the 26th MEU embarked, deployed on February 7 from Mayport, Fla. The ARG includes the amphibious transport dock USS New York (LPD-21), dock landing ship USS Oak Hill (LSD-51), Fleet Surgical Team (FST) 8 and FST-4, Helicopter Sea Combat squadron (HSC) 28, Tactical Air Control Squadron (TACRON) 22, components of Naval Beach Group (NBG) 2 and the embarked staff of Amphibious Squadron 4.

In the Western Atlantic

Cmdr. John Logan, A Navy chaplain, performs taps during a burial-at-sea ceremony aboard the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN-77) on March 31, 2018. US Navy Photo

USS George H. W. Bush (CVN-77) is in port after completing a phase of at-sea training with a French Navy aviation detachment that will deploy with the strike group later this year.

The French AIRDET is composed of 350 sailors, 12 Rafale fighter aircraft and one E-2C Hawkeye. The element will deploy for eight weeks to Naval Air Station (NAS) Oceana and NAS Chambers Field starting on April 4.

“The Rafales belong to squadrons 11F, 12F, and 17F based at NAS Landivisiau, in Brittany, France, and the Hawkeye hails from squadron 4F based in NAS Lann-Bihoué, also in Brittany. While operating in the United States, these aircraft, their aircrew, and their ground crew will be integrated in the U.S. Navy’s Carrier Air Wing Eight (CVW 8),” read a piece in U.S. Naval Institute’s Proceedings.

In the Eastern Pacific

Sailors assigned to the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN-74) heave around on a mooring line as the ship departs Naval Air Station North Island on April 3, 2018. US Navy Photo

USS John C. Stennis (CVN-74) left Naval Air Station North Island on April 3 and is underway with CVW 9 to conduct training to prepare for its next scheduled deployment.

“Planned training includes flight operations, seamanship training, and exercises designed to maintain technical and tactical proficiency in a variety of warfare areas as the ship and CVW 9 operate together for the first time since August 2016,” read a statement from the Navy.

Last week, USS Essex (LHD-2) was underway in the Southern California Operating Areas conducting an Amphibious Squadron (PHIBRON) and MEU Integration (PMINT) exercise. PMINT is a two-week training evolution between Essex Amphibious Ready Group and 13th MEU, which allows sailors and Marines to train as a cohesive unit in preparation for their upcoming deployment. That is now completed.

In addition to these major formations, not shown are thousands of others serving in submarines, individual surface ships, aircraft squadrons, SEALs, Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Forces, Coast Guard cutters and more serving throughout the globe.

  • tiger

    Why is a Chaplain playing Taps at a service? Don’t we have band geeks for that?

    • Ed L

      Because he can, and i bet the 8 or 9 Navy Bands are over extended?

    • Ron Marshall

      MAYBE THE CHAPLAIN IS A BAND GEEK

    • Ser Arthur Dayne

      One time recently I watched a ‘documentary’ vid on Youtube which was really a guided tour of one of the Iowa-class Battleships when it was active in the late 80s or early 90s, and having a family-type event in port. It was being narrated/directed by a Commander who was very polished, had literally manicured hands, and an air of authority of him (he got upset when people cut in the cameras view or obstructed his path, etc.) I am thinking this guy is the XO or the Ops officer or something like that. ……… Nope! He was the DENTIST. LOL. WTF is a Dentist doing giving tours and explanations of the SRBOC dispensers and gunnery calculations in the turrets? LOL.

      • Ed L

        I remember more than one ships doctor who would roam all over the ship asking questions, learning about systems where the crew usually stood watches at in the engine rooms, bridge flight deck etc. Where and what kind of chemicals and other hazardous material was carried on

  • Ed L

    That photo of the Quartermaster using the sextant is bothering me. Something is not quite right about it. A Sun shoot? I like the linehandlers shot. Except for the first one bending over like that. But then those sponsons are pretty cramp. Now for the LCS barb, what? the LCS aren’t patrolling off the LEVANT.

    • fjwalker1959

      Because the press never asks anyone to pose for a picture.

      • Ed L

        That’s funny, Well it’s not a bubble sextant with one of those you don’t need a horizon to do your shoots, like in ice fields. The Navy used to have at least one along with the standard sextants on each ship. The Air Force used to carry them for a long time