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NORFOLK, Va. (July 17, 22) – Nearly 360 Sailors aboard guided-missile destroyer USS Nitze (DDG 94) departed Naval Station Norfolk on a scheduled independent deployment, July 17.
The ship’s departure comes after months of training, maintenance, and certification events, which ultimately prepared the ship for a multitude of operations.
“The Sailors, chiefs and officers of USS Nitze represent the finest fighting force ever assembled,” said Cmdr. Sam T. Sareini, Nitze’s commanding officer. “There is no other crew on Earth with whom I would rather go to sea. I am extremely proud of my team, and they are ready to answer the nation’s call.”
Last month, Nitze sailed with ships in Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 26 and the George H.W. Bush Carrier Strike Group (GHWBCSG) during a composite training unit exercise (COMPTUEX). Led by commander, Carrier Strike Group 4, COMPTUEX is the final deployment certification event. COMPTUEX lasts several weeks, during which units are tested on their proficiency and readiness for deployment through scenario-based, live training that increases in complexity and intensity.
Unique to this exercise was the virtual integration of the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit into a CSG COMPTUEX and the live integration of Italian destroyer ITS Caio Duilio (D554), which provided the opportunity to train in high-end warfighting with a close NATO ally.
The strike group also conducted the fourth iteration of the NATO vignette, developed by CSG 4 and Combined Joint Operations from the Sea Centre of Excellence (CJOS COE).
NATO vignette refers to a period of time during which a NATO command exercises command and control of exercise participants. The GHWBCSG team rehearsed a transfer of authority (TOA) between U.S. 2nd Fleet and Naval Striking and Support Forces NATO (STRIKFORNATO), NATO’s rapidly deployable joint headquarters in Portugal. NATO vignettes support the development of interoperability requirements for future force generation and improve allied maritime command and control linkages that are vital in all phases of warfare.
“Our team trained hard for the past year, preparing to face any challenge ahead and execute whatever mission our country asks of us,” Sareini said. “Our crew is resilient and ready to deliver superior combat capability to deter, and if necessary, defeat America's adversaries in support of national security.”
The Vipers of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 48, Detachment 5, deployed aboard Nitze.
“HSM 48 will execute and support any and all missions assigned to the ship and stands firm in our commitment to integrate with Nitze’s talented crew,” said Lt. Cmdr. Kyle Stewart, Nitze’s air operations officer.
Nitze is equipped to operate in high density, multi-threat environments either independently or as an integral member of a carrier strike group or expeditionary strike group. She is a multi-mission warship that is incredibly capable across more than 24 mission areas.
The ship, whose motto is “Vision, Courage and Determination,” was commissioned in 2005 as the 44th destroyer of the Arleigh Burke-class. She bears the name of Secretary of the Navy Paul H. Nitze who served under President Lyndon B. Johnson.
For more information on USS Nitze (DDG 94), please visit the ship's website at https://www.surflant.usff.navy.mil/ddg94/.