USA: Ike Strike Group Ships Host 6th Fleet Commander
The commander of U.S. 6th Fleet visited Sailors aboard USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69), USS Hue City (CG 66) and the German navy frigate FGS Hamburg (F220), while the ships were conducting operations in the 6th Fleet Area of Responsibility March 12.
Vice Adm. Frank C. Pandolfe’s visit to Hamburg included meeting with the ship’s commanding officer, German navy Cmdr. Ralf Kuchler, and touring the ship.
Having a German ship accompany an American strike group on deployment is a unique event.
“It is a rare honor for me to visit a German warship at sea conducting its mission,” said Pandolfe. “Your ship is an integral part of this carrier strike group. We have tremendous faith and confidence in the capabilities of this ship, and we are very proud to sail alongside you.”
Pandolfe also visited Sailors aboard Eisenhower. After meeting with Rear Adm. Mike Manazir, commander, Carrier Strike Croup (CSG) 8, and senior leadership, he addressed the crew.
“I thank you for your successful engagements in France and Spain, where you represented the Navy very well,” said Vice Adm. Pandolfe. “We wish you every success as you sail forward to 5th Fleet and look forward to your return.”
During his visit to Hue City, Pandolfe addressed the ship’s wardroom and chief’s mess, and spoke to the crew from the bridge, where he expressed his gratitude for the crew’s hard work on back-to-back deployments. Hue City, along with Eisenhower, had returned early from a previously scheduled nine-month deployment in order to make preparations to redeploy in late February for additional operations in the U.S. 5th and U.S. 6th Fleet
“We appreciate your hard work in getting ready for the deployment,” said Pandolfe. “No strike group is more capable or more prepared.”
Dwight D. Eisenhower, homeported in Norfolk, Va., and Hue City homeported in Mayport, Fl., along with the German frigate FGS Hamburg, from Kiel, Germany, are on a scheduled deployment in support of maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility.
Naval Today Staff, March 15, 2013; Image: US Navy