SAN DIEGO –
The Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Bunker Hill (CG 52) returned to San Diego, marking the successful completion of its deployment to U.S. 3rd Fleet and 7th Fleet areas of operations, May 22.
Bunker Hill, part of the Theodore Roosevelt Carrier Strike Group (TRCSG), departed on deployment to the Indo-Pacific, Dec. 23, 2020.
"The Bunker Hill crew should feel very proud of what they’ve accomplished over the last six months,” said Rear Adm. Doug Verissimo, commander, Carrier Strike Group Nine. “The ship, her CO, and the Sailors provided forward-operating presence throughout 7th Fleet as a key component of our strike group. As the air defense commander, they answered the call every step of the way even during a challenging double-pump deployment under COVID conditions. I could not be more pleased with their performance and resilience.”
Bunker Hill’s primary mission was conducting maritime security operations while in U.S. 7th Fleet, ensuring a free and open Indo-Pacific. In support of allies and partners, Bunker Hill conducted bilateral exercises with the Indian Navy, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, Royal Australian Navy and Royal Malaysian Air Force, focusing on building capabilities and increasing combat readiness to win the high-end fight. Most recently, Bunker Hill participated in Exercise Northern Edge 2021 in the Gulf of Alaska.
"Following our second 7th Fleet deployment in less than a year, Bunker Hill remains one of the most capable and storied warships in the fleet today,” said Capt. Shea Thompson, commanding officer of Bunker Hill. “This crew’s commitment to excellence was critical to demonstrating U.S. resolve in maintaining regional stability through freedom of navigation operations, and bilateral and joint exercises all while remaining postured to project power throughout 7th Fleet.”
Bunker Hill joined forces with the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group in the South China Sea for expeditionary strike force operations. They also participated in dual carrier operations with TRCSG and the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group that showcased the tactical power of two carrier strike groups, increasing interoperability as well as command and control capabilities.
“Bunker Hill excelled this deployment, and this team's performance honors the sacrifice of past Bunker Hill crews that have gone before us,” said Thompson. “The 2021 Bunker Hill crew can hold their heads high and take pride in knowing they did it right. They are disciplined, fearless and lethal. Bunker Hill remains the ‘sword of the fleet!’"
An integral part of U.S. Pacific Fleet, U.S. 3rd Fleet leads naval forces in the Indo-Pacific and provides the realistic, relevant training necessary to flawlessly execute our Navy’s role across the full spectrum of military operations—from combat operations to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. U.S. 3rd Fleet works together with our allies and partners to advance freedom of navigation, the rule of law, and other principles that underpin security for the Indo-Pacific region.