More than 7,300 Sailors from 17 commands and three staffs left their homeports Nov. 5 as Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group (HSTCSG) deployed to the Central Command Area of Operations as part of the ongoing rotation to support Maritime Security Operations in the region.
According to Rear Adm. Bill Gortney, commander, Carrier Strike Group (CCSG) 10, the mission of the HSTCSG is to be ready, when called upon, to support theater commanders. He emphasized that throughout all operations, safety will remain a primary focus.
"We are a robust strike group able to support the needs of our president," Gortney said. "We are joined in this fight and our strike group by a coalition - a Canadian frigate and a British destroyer."
The strike group returned from participating in Bold Step in early August, wrapping up a month-long Composite Training Unit Exercise and Joint Task Force Exercise.
They successfully completed a series of complex training events, which included naval surface fire support training and air-to-ground bombing off the coasts of Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia and Florida.
These intermediate level exercises are designed to forge the strike group into a cohesive, fighting team and are critical steps in the pre-deployment training cycle which flexes the strike group's abilities to carry out a full spectrum of possible missions, including surface strike, ground support and undersea warfare.
S. Truman's (CVN 75) Commanding Officer, Capt. Herman Shelanski, said the ship is materially ready, the crew is well-trained and Harry S. Truman Sailors are excited to get a chance to implement their training.
"We practiced everything that could possibly go on in real life. We made it intense and it worked out in our favor," Shelanski said. "We also held several pre-deployment briefs to ensure family members were adequately prepared to deal with those things we hope don't pop up while we're on deployment but can make life for the families difficult."
Shelanski said he is proud to sail with this crew and has great expectations for the Truman team.
"I feel confident about sending our Sailors out to represent the United States and to make a positive impression on whatever country we get to interact with," Shelanski said. "The American people should be proud and feel confident and secure in the fact that the Harry S. Truman and these Sailors are out there protecting our country."
The HSTCSG is made up of CCSG 10 staff, Harry S. Truman, Carrier Air Wing 3, Commander, Destroyer Squadron 26 staff, guided missile cruisers USS San Jacinto
(CG 56) and USS Hue City (CG 66); guided missile destroyers
USS Carney (DDG 64), USS Oscar Austin (DDG 79) and USS Winston S. Churchill (DDG 81); attack submarine USS Montpelier (SSN 765); fast combat support ship USNS Arctic (T-AOE 8); the Canadian frigate HMCS Charlottetown (FFG 339); and the British destroyer HMS Manchester (D95).
Carrier Air Wing 3 consists of Strike Fighter Squadrons VFA-11, VFA-32, VFA-37 and VFA-105; Tactical Electronics Warfare Squadron VAQ-130; Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron VAW-126; and Helicopter Anti-Submarine Squadron 7. [Source: http://www.news.navy.mil]