World’s largest aircraft carrier arrives in Italy

The U.S. Navy’s newest aircraft carrier, USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), embarked staff from Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 12, and Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Ramage (DDG 61), arrived in Trieste, Italy for a scheduled port visit.

US Navy

As informed, the vessel arrived in Italy on September 17, 2023. This port visit is Gerald R. Ford’s fifth stop while deployed to the U.S. Naval Forces Europe (NAVEUR) area of operations, and provides an opportunity to enhance the strong partnership between the U.S. and Italy.

In the past four months, Gerald R. Ford Strike Group has executed numerous bilateral exercises and training events with the Italian Navy to enhance and demonstrate the U.S. commitment to security in the Mediterranean. In addition, both navies conducted personnel transfers to learn from one another and increase operational interoperability and understanding.

“The Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group has operated with our Italian partners throughout our time in the Mediterranean,” said Rear Adm. Erik J. Eslich, Commander, Carrier Strike Group 12.

“The interoperability between our forces continues to improve our understanding of our collective capabilities and fosters stability and security in the region.”

“This visit is a great opportunity for the Sailors of USS Gerald R. Ford, Carrier Strike Group 12, Carrier Air Wing 8, and Destroyer Squadron 2 to engage with a key ally on a personal level and experience Italian culture,” said Gerald R. Ford Commanding Officer Capt. Rick Burgess.

Gerald R. Ford is anchored off the coast of Trieste and will host local officials and military leaders for a lunch and tour to celebrate the strong, extensive alliance between the U.S. and Italy. 

The Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group (GRFCSG) is conducting a scheduled deployment in U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations, demonstrating the commitment and power projection capability of the US Navy’s globally deployed force. 

The Gerald R. Ford Carrier Strike Group consists of Carrier Strike Group 12, Carrier Air Wing 8, Destroyer Squadron 2, USS Normandy (CG 60), USS Ramage (DDG 61), USS McFaul (DDG 74), and USS Thomas Hudner (DDG 116).

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