Three days after the arrival of future littoral combat ship USS Omaha, naval base San Diego welcomed the future amphibious transport dock ship USS Portland (LPD 27) to its new homeport on January 22.
Portland’s arrival to her Southern California homeport concluded a six-week transit from her building site at Huntington Ingalls shipyard in Pascagoula, Miss.
The ship departed Pascagoula December 14 and made port visits to eastern US naval bases, such as Key West and Mayport, Fla., as well as a visit to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
The ship transited the Panama Canal together with future USS Omaha.
During the transit, the ship also conducted various training operations to include certifying landing craft air cushion (LCAC) operations with Assault Craft Unit 5, and experiencing first-time moments, like passing through the Panama Canal and conducting a “crossing the line” ceremony when the Portland crossed the equator.
Portland is the 11th San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship. It is the third ship to bear the name ‘USS Portland,’ however it is the first ship to be named solely after the largest city in Oregon.
The city of Portland, Ore. was established in 1843, when William Overton and Asa Lovejoy filed a land claim on the west bank of the Willamette River in Oregon Country. In 1845, the name of Portland was chosen for this community and on Feb. 8, 1851, the city was incorporated.
“I remain very impressed and blessed with the Sailors of Portland, as they are true professional mariners,” said commanding officer, Capt. J.R. Hill. “They started as 380 individuals and quickly formed into a crew that consistently achieved their assigned missions and goals to bring Portland safely out of the shipyard to her homeport of San Diego.”
The ship’s formal commissioning ceremony is scheduled for April in Portland, Ore., after which Portland will become part of US 3rd Fleet.