SAN DIEGO, Calif. –
The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group (CSG) returned to San Diego, California, Feb. 14, marking the end of an eight-month deployment to U.S. Third and Seventh Fleet’s areas of operation.
After an accelerated departure from San Diego, the CSG supported integrated operations in the Hawaiian Islands operating area with the U.S. Marine Corps, Air Force and Coast Guard as part of the Defense Department’s ongoing presence in the Indo-Pacific region. They continued into the western Pacific demonstrating U.S. commitment to partnerships and alliances in the region while upholding a free and open Indo-Pacific.
“The tireless dedication and professionalism of our Sailors through a global pandemic, challenging operational tempo and sacrificed time away from family, is truly humbling,” said Capt. P. Scott Miller, commanding officer of Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), the strike group’s flagship. “Their efforts have demonstrated flexibility and resiliency and ensured mission success in every task. They have directly supported a free and open Indo-Pacific and have underscored our Navy’s readiness, strength and lethality.”
The Vinson CSG sailed more than 80,000 nautical miles while underway for 262 days, conducted dual carrier operations and multinational exercises, including maritime security operations; integrated training between surface and air units; long-range maritime strike; anti-submarine warfare; information warfare operations; maritime interdiction operations; personnel recovery; air defense operations; multiple ship navigation and formation maneuvering; and refueling-at-sea operations. While deployed, the strike group operated in some of the most heavily navigated waters of the Indo-Pacific including the South China Sea and the Philippine Sea.
CVN 70 is the first aircraft carrier to deploy with a combination of fourth and fifth-generation platforms within Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 2 that predominantly represent the “Air Wing of the Future,” including the F-35C Lightning IIs of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 147, CMV-22B Ospreys of Fleet Logistics Multi-Mission Squadron 30, F/A-18E/F Super Hornets of VFAs 2, 113 and 192, EA-18G Growlers of Electronic Attack Squadron 136, the E-2D Advanced Hawkeyes of Airborne Command & Control Squadron 113, the MH-60R Seahawks of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 78, and the MH-60S Seahawks of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 4. The complete Air Wing of the Future will also include the MQ-25 Stingray, an aerial refueling drone, which is planned to be incorporated into carrier air wings in 2025.
During the deployment, the air wing executed more than 15,000 fixed-wing and helicopter flight hours comprising of 7,791 sorties, 7,702 launches and 7,761 aircraft arrestments.
The strike group successfully completed operations and exercises alongside multiple partners and allies including navies from Australia, Canada, Germany, India, the Netherlands, New Zealand and the United Kingdom, as well as the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force.
Notable multinational, bilateral and U.S.-only exercises included Large Scale Exercise 2021 in August, Operation Malabar and Maritime Partnership Exercise 2021 in October, Annual Exercise 2021 in November, U.S. and Australia’s bilateral exercise in December and Expeditionary Strike Force and dual carrier operations in January 2022.
“Alongside our partners and allies, we have aggressively pursued every opportunity to elevate our combat readiness in a drive to continue upholding regional stability,” said Rear Adm. Dan Martin, commander, CSG-1. “We’ve been doing this for 75 years and I’m proud to say that our team has relentlessly paid tribute to this legacy with many long hours of sweat and determination that started well before we left San Diego.”
The strike group operated alongside several other strike and ready groups including: the Ronald Reagan CSG, led by Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76); CSG-21, led by HMS Queen Elizabeth (R08); the Essex Amphibious Ready Group, led by Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Essex (LHD 2); Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force Escort Flotilla 2, led by Izumo-class helicopter carrier, JS Kaga (DDH-184); and, most recently, the Abraham Lincoln CSG, led by Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72).
The Carl Vinson CSG comprises the Carl Vinson, embarked staffs of CSG-1, CVW-2 and Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 1; nine embarked air wing squadrons; guided-missile cruiser USS Lake Champlain (CG 57); and DESRON 1 guided-missile destroyers USS Chafee (DDG 90), USS O’Kane (DDG 77), USS Stockdale (DDG 106) and USS Michael Murphy (DDG 112).
CSG-1 provides a combat-ready force to protect and defends the collective maritime interests of the U.S. and its regional allies and partners. The Carl Vinson CSG comprises more than 7,000 Sailors capable of carrying out a wide variety of missions around the globe.
An integral part of U.S. Pacific Fleet, U.S. Third Fleet leads naval forces in the Indo-Pacific and provides the realistic, relevant training necessary to flawlessly execute our Navy’s role across the full spectrum of military operations—from combat operations to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. U.S. Third Fleet works together with our allies and partners to advance freedom of navigation, the rule of law and other principles that underpin security for the Indo-Pacific region.