The littoral combat ship USS Coronado (LCS 4) arrived at its new homeport of San Diego March 10, a few weeks ahead of her commissioning ceremony scheduled for April 5 at Naval Air Station North Island.
Following construction and acceptance trials at the Austal USA shipyard in Mobile, Ala., Coronado set sail in January for Mayport, Fla., conducting equipment checks, system tests and crew certification training along the way.
Upon departing Mayport, the ship continued its testing and training and made port visits to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba; Colombia, Panama, and Mexico before its arrival to San Diego.
“I couldn’t be more proud of my crew as they’ve conquered every obstacle in their way and thrived,” said Cmdr. John Kochendorfer, Coronado Crew 203 commanding officer. “From day one when we departed Mobile, the crew has performed superbly and sailed Coronado with expert seamanship. They’ve proven that they can accomplish anything.”
Coronado is the third U.S. Navy ship to bear the name of the “Crown City” and is the second littoral combat ship of the Independence variant which features an innovative, trimaran hull. The unique hull design offers unparalleled stability for marine and aviation operations in severe sea states.
“The commissioning of any ship is a special experience for every Sailor. It builds a bond, a unique relationship between the ship and Sailor,” said Senior Chief Cryptologic Technician (Collection) Anthony Corey, Crew 203 senior enlisted leader. “Each and every Sailor is looking forward to participating in that time-honored Navy tradition.”
LCS vessels were designed to be high-speed, shallow draft, multi-mission ships capable of operating independently or with an associated strike group. They are designed to defeat growing littoral threats and provide access and dominance in coastal waters.
A fast, maneuverable, and networked surface combatant, LCS provides the required warfighting capabilities and operational flexibility to execute focused missions such as surface warfare, mine warfare and anti-submarine warfare.
After the formal commissioning ceremony scheduled April 5 at Naval Air Station North Island, Coronado will become part of the U.S. 3rd Fleet.
U.S. 3rd Fleet leads naval forces in the Eastern Pacific from the West Coast of North America to the international date line and provides the realistic, relevant training necessary for an effective global Navy.
Press Release, March 11, 2014, 2014; Image: US Navy