SAN DIEGO — More than 6,000 sailors are assigned to the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group ships that left from San Diego on Monday morning in support of global maritime security operations.
According to a naval media release, the group of ships is "capable of deploying anywhere in the world at a moment’s notice to meet the needs of the country and its allies."
All personnel assigned to the group completed a minimum, 14-day quarantine ashore, and were tested for COVID-19 prior to getting underway with their respective units.
"Learning to operate in this COVID environment has not been easy, but the Nimitz crew has demonstrated their adaptability and resiliency in overcoming the challenges and have remained focused on maintaining readiness," said Capt. Max Clark, commanding officer. "I couldn't be more proud of the team in being ready to deploy on time and mission ready to answer any call."
According to a media advisory from the Naval Air Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet, the Nimitz Strike Group last deployed in 2017. Since then, Nimitz completed a 15-month docked planned incremental availability in May 2019 at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard in Bremerton.
The Nimitz Carrier Strike Group is part of U.S. 3rd Fleet, which leads naval forces in the Pacific and provides the realistic, relevant training necessary for an effective global Navy. U.S. 3rd Fleet constantly coordinates with U.S. 7th Fleet to plan and execute missions based on their complementary strengths to promote ongoing peace, security, and stability throughout the entire Pacific theater of operations.
In addition to the USS Nimitz, the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group (CSG) deploying units include Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17, Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Princeton (CG 59) and Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 9, which includes Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers USS Sterett (DDG 104), and USS Ralph Johnson (DDG 114). CVW-17 consists of the Lemoore, California-based “Kestrels” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 137, “Mighty Shrikes” of VFA 94, “Fighting Redcocks” of VFA 22; the San Diego-based “Death Rattlers” of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 323, the Whidbey Island, Washington-based “Cougars” of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 139, the Point Mugu, California-based “Sun Kings” of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 116, and the San Diego-based “Indians” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 6, “Battlecats” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 73 and “Providers” of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) 30.