Commander, Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 4 congratulated the crew of the guided-missile frigate USS Simpson (FFG 56), Sept. 26, after the ship successfully completed its Independent Deployer Certification Exercise (IDCERTEX).
CSG-4 led the training across multiple warfare areas for Simpson during the three week long Iwo Jima Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) / 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), which included unit-level training in shipboard firefighting, visit, board, search, and seizure (VBSS) and other ship specific training.
“We put Simpson and her crew through the paces, and they responded successfully,” said Rear Adm. Richard W. Butler, commander, Carrier Strike Group 4. “Our mission is to ensure that Simpson and other independent deployers are trained to forward deploy safely in defense of our national interests.”
Simpson’s integrated phase of IDCERTEX involved training between multiple ships and aircraft within ARGMEU EX, which included USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7), the amphibious transport dock ship USS New York (LPD 21), the amphibious dock landing ship USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43), the guided-missile destroyers USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109) and USS Mitscher (DDG 57) and the guided-missile cruiser USS Vicksburg (CG 69). The overall training included consisted of flight operations, submarine tracking, strait transit formations, replenishment-at-sea and other required mission evolutions.
“It is important for us to provide a complex certification exercise with multiple ships,” said Master Chief Cryptologic Technician – Technical James T. Womack, CSG-4’s senior enlisted leader. “Simpson may be an independent deployer, but the crew needs to be ready to join other ships, aircraft and submarines at a moment’s notice to assist in maritime security operations (MSO). Simpson has been certified as ready.”
Press Release, September 29, 2014; Image: US Navy