Peleliu ARG, 15th MEU Depart for Deployment

More than 4,000 Sailors and Marines assigned to the Peleliu Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit departed San Diego for deployment Monday, Sept. 17.

The Peleliu ARG, composed of Peleliu, amphibious transport dock ship USS Green Bay (LPD 20) and amphibious dock landing ship USS Rushmore (LSD 47), is commanded by Capt. Mark T. Sakaguchi, commander, Amphibious Squadron 3.

Prior to deploying, the ARG completed a myriad of workup exercises, amphibious squadron/Marine expeditionary unit integration, a composite training unit exercise and a certification exercise to prepare for deployment.

During deployment, the Peleliu ARG will be expected to accomplish a variety of missions supporting the Navy’s maritime strategy including combat missions, humanitarian assistance, counter-piracy and promoting peace and stability in the regions it enters.

“We’re prepared for everything, from humanitarian relief, disaster relief, maritime support operations up to full scale combat,” said Sakaguchi. “Whatever the situation is our leaders give us the tasking, we’ll respond.”

The ships in the ARG hosted a large number of family and friends on board prior to their departure.

“This is my first deployment, and I never thought it would be so hard to leave my wife behind for so long,” said Aviation Ordnanceman Airman Joshua Quinones, assigned to Peleliu. “I’m sad, but this is what I signed up for.”

Naval Today Staff, September 18, 2012