The U.S. Navy’s guided-missile destroyer USS Stockdale (DDG 106) returned to Naval Base San Diego Thursday, August 11, after a 205 day deployment to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operation.
Stockdale deployed with the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG 53) and guided-missile destroyers USS Chung Hoon (DDG 93) and USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110) as part of Carrier Strike Group Three (CSG 3) in order to provide presence, support freedom of navigation, and strengthen multi-national relationships in the Western Pacific.
“I am really proud of our sailors,” said Cmdr. Raphael Castillejo, commanding officer of Stockdale. “We deployed into a tense situation in the South China Sea, and we asked our Sailors to execute mission after mission. Not only did they respond with efficiency and professionalism, they did so with a level of perseverance that I found invigorating.”
Consisting of over 300 personnel, including a combat element from Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 71, the ship sailed more than 56,000 nautical miles and conducted over 700 hours of flight operations in support of CSG 3.
Stockdale also operated independently of the Stennis Strike Group during Exercise Komodo in Indonesia, which consisted of participants from 18 navies. Additionally, she finished deployment by working with a Maritime Interdiction Operations (MIO) task force during the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) 2016 exercise in waters around Hawaii in July.
The crew enjoyed port visits in Guam, South Korea, Indonesia, Singapore, The Philippines and Hawaii. While ashore, 60 sailors participated in seven community relations events which further strengthened ties with foreign communities.
The ship will now have a brief stand down before entering an extensive dry-docking phase in October. The yard period will be highlighted by the first-ever installation of a Hybrid Electric Drive.
Commissioned in 2009, USS Stockdale (DDG 106) is part of Naval Surfaces Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet, and is assigned to Destroyer Squadron 21 (DESRON 21) and U.S. 3rd Fleet.