USS Nimitz Deploys to the Western Pacific
The aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68) with embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 11 and Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 11 departed Naval Air Station North Island, April 19 and will join up with San Diego based guided missile cruiser USS Princeton (CG 59) for a scheduled Western Pacific deployment.
Nimitz left its homeport of Naval Station Everett, Wash., March 29 to join Princeton and CVW 11 for a Sustainment Exercise (SUSTEX) in preparation for their deployment. The Commander, U.S. Third Fleet-led exercise ensured the deployment readiness of key operational components of the strike group after a delay in deployment as a result of an emergent maintenance requirement.
“This fine warship and its outstanding crew will have the opportunity to sail to the Western Pacific and operate in support of our nation’s ongoing efforts to ensure maritime security,” said Capt. Jeff S. Ruth, Nimitz’s commanding officer.
Prior to the maintenance period that led to the sustainment exercise, the CSG went through a series of exercises including a Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX) and Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFEX) that certified them ready for deployment.
“This strike group is more than ready to perform this nation’s mission,” said Rear Adm. Michael S. White, CSG 11 commander. “They have excelled in a series of strenuous and dynamic exercises and training evolutions in the past year. I can’t wait to see what they can do with this next task ahead of them.”
The ship was named for World War II Pacific fleet commander Chester W. Nimitz, who was the Navy’s third fleet admiral. Unlike all subsequent , Nimitz only uses her namesake’s surname as is common for military officers. She is also the first carrier of her class and the most recent supercarrier in service not to be named for someone who held elected office in the United States
Squadrons of CVW-11
- Strike Fighter Squadron 154 (VFA-154) “Black Knights” with F/A-18F Super Hornets
- Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 323 (VMFA-323) “Death Rattlers” with F/A-18C Hornets
- Strike Fighter Squadron 146 (VFA-146) “Blue Diamonds” with F/A-18C Hornets
- Strike Fighter Squadron 147 (VFA-147) “Argonauts” with F/A-18E Super Hornets
- Electronic Attack Squadron 142 (VAQ-142) “Gray Wolves” with EA-6B Prowlers
- Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 117 (VAW-117) “Wallbangers” with E-2C Hawkeyes
- Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 6 (HSC-6) “Screamin’ Indians” with MH-60S