USS Higgins deploys to Asia, Middle East

US guided-missile destroyer USS Higgins (DDG 76) got underway from San Diego on November 20 to start a regularly scheduled independent deployment to the US 7th Fleet and 5th Fleet areas of operation.

Higgins has a crew of nearly 330 sailors, officers and enlisted, and is a multi-mission ship designed to operate independently or with an associated strike group.

The deployment follows a maintenance phase and training cycle, wherein Higgins proved itself operationally capable of carrying out its mission as a deployed ballistic missile defense (BMD) asset.

“My team of warriors demonstrated they are smart and brave during the challenging work up cycle, and are eager to stand the watch over the horizon,” said Commander Victor Garza, commanding cfficer of Higgins.

BMD capable guided-missile destroyers provide a flexibility to combatant commanders and are able to carry out assigned BMD missions while still being ready to respond to other operational tasking such as maritime interdiction operations, air defense, and multinational exercises.

Higgins is homeported in San Diego and is part of Naval Surface Forces and US 3rd Fleet.