USS Fort McHenry, JDS Ohsumi Complete Transport Exercise 2006

Wednesday, February 15, 2006
USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43) returned to its forward deployed base of Sasebo, Japan, Feb. 12, after successfully completing a four-day bilateral Transportation Exercise (TRANSPORTEX) 06 off the coast of Numazu beach with Japanese Defense Ship (JDS) Ohsumi (LST 4001). Sailors from Fort McHenry and Ohsumi participated in the second bilateral exercise Feb. 5-8 in waters off of Yokosuka, Japan, enhancing the maritime transport proficiency and interoperability of the U.S. Navy and the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF) in support of humanitarian relief missions. A plaque exchange ceremony by Fort McHenry commanding officer, Cmdr. Michael Talaga, and Ohsumi commanding officer, Capt. Masami Ohkoudo, officially began TRANSPORTEX. Following the plaque exchange, Sailors from both ships took a ship familiarization tour and in-port training session. Fort McHenry’s commanding officer spoke of the potential benefits of this training for the future.

While in port, both ships conducted well-deck training to familiarize both LCAC crews with each other’s ships. Before getting underway, both ships exchanged three crewmembers for the exercise. Lt. j.g. Takeshi Yamaue of Ohsumi said he and Petty Officers Koichi Nakaishi and Yuaka Housra, were impressed with the capabilities of the Fort McHenry and the Sailors that serve on board. Ensign John Cobb, Ensign Alan Presley and Chief Boatswain’s Mate (SW) Robert Isham were sent to the Ohsumi for the personnel exchange. During the exercise both ships conducted exercises and drills to familiarize each other with their capabilities in the event of a natural disaster or relief operation. In addition, LCACs from Assault Craft Unit (ACU) 5 Detachment Western Pacific and JMSDF conducted communication drills, tactical maneuvers, and launch-and-recovery operations between the two transport ships. USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43) is a dock landing ship forward deployed to Sasebo

By Journalist 2nd Class David J. Ham, ommander, Amphibious Force, U.S. 7th Fleet Public Affairs

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