USS Defender Retires after 25 Years of Service


The US Navy’s mine countermeasure ship USS Defender (MCM 2), was decommissioned after 25 years of naval service at Naval Base San Diego, Oct. 1.

Defender was launched on April 4, 1987 and commissioned on Sept. 30, 1989.

Lt. Cmdr. James Sordi, commanding officer of Defender, honored the plank owners that took part in the commissioning ceremony 25 years ago by having them stand and be recognized during the decommissioning ceremony.

Over the years, Defender has deployed to the U.S. 3rd, 6th and 7th Fleet and has earned four Battle ‘E’ awards and two Secretary of the Navy Letters of Commendation.

Commodore of Mine Countermeasures Squadron Three, Capt. Edmund Hernandez, described how Defender truly embodied her name.

“The Avenger class mine countermeasure ships are all named for impressive qualities we want our warships to embody. To ‘defend’ means to fight in order to not allow a person or thing to hurt damage or destroy someone or something,” said Hernandez. “It is an apt name for a ship that performed that precise task and did it so superbly for a quarter of a century, in true sustained, superior performance.”

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Press Release, October 02, 2014; Image: US Navy