By Lt. James Stockman, Commander, Navy Region Northeast Public Affairs
The crew of USS Alexandria (SSN 757) received the meritorious unit commendation award, Nov. 26, for their 2006 deployment with the Enterprise Strike Group to the 5th, 6th and 7th Fleet areas of operation.
Alexandria, a Los Angeles-class nuclear powered submarine, was recognized for its achievements during its deployment from May to November 2006 in support of Operations Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom and Maritime Security Operations.
According to Cmdr. Mike Bernacchi, Alexandria's commanding officer, the multi-mission capabilities of the Navy's modern submarines have been clearly demonstrated by Alexandria over the past few years.
In 2004, Alexandria completed a deployment that had it transit under the Arctic ice to the Pacific, Central and European Commands' area of responsibility. This deployment, in which Alexandria operated in all four oceans and the Red and Mediterranean Seas, was the first improved Los Angeles-class attack submarine to conduct a circumnavigation of this nature.
In 2007, Alexandria participated in Ice Exercise 2007, a joint U.S. Navy/Royal Navy training event on and under the Arctic ice.
"The credit for Alexandria's great success over the years goes to the crew," Bernacchi said. "They were well-trained, ready and able to sustain the submarine during complex operations and an extended deployment."
Capt. Ken Perry, Submarine Developmental Squadron 12 commodore, presented the award to the crew. He said he was proud of Alexandria and felt comfortable the crew would continue to successfully accomplish all future missions.
"When it comes to projecting a forward presence as part of the nation's maritime strategy, no one does it better than 'Alex'," said Perry.
Alexandria was attached to the Enterprise Carrier Strike Group, which included the flagship USS Enterprise (CVN 65), the cruiser USS Leyte Gulf (CG 55), destroyer USS McFaul (DDG 74), frigate USS Nicholas (FFG 47) and the fast-combat supply ship USNS Supply (T-AOE 6).
With stealth, endurance and agility, fast-attack submarines like Alexandria are multi-mission capable - able to deploy and support special forces operations, disrupt and destroy an adversary's military and economic operations at sea, provide early strike and ensure undersea superiority.