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Carl Vinson Strike Group WESTPAC 05 Deployment
CVN-70 Carl Vinson
"Gold Eagle"

The USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) Carrier Strike Group successfully completed its 22-day Composite Training Unit Exercise, (COMPTUEX) Oct. 2, 2004 in the seas off the coast of Southern California. COMPTUEX is an intermediate-level strike group training exercise. It typically represents the first time in a training cycle a carrier strike group operates together as a cohesive team and is a critical step toward the final certification to deploy overseas. The exercise was broken down into two phases that were intended to test the strike group's ability to function as a carrier strike group. Phase I was designed to provide training for warfare commanders and the rest of the strike group in operational tasking and decision-making. Phase II was a scenario designed to measure the ability of the strike group to act as a coordinated, combat-ready force and was intended to closely resemble real-life conflict. Units that participated in COMPTUEX include Carl Vinson, with CVW-9, and DESRON 31, USS O' Kane (DDG 77), USS Mustin (DDG 89), USS Antietam (CG 54), USS Camden (AOE 2), USS Olympia (SSN 717), and Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 11, Det. 9.

USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) departed its homeport of Bremerton, Wash. on Jan. 13, 2005 to participate in a Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFEX), the ship's final step before leaving on its scheduled six-month deployment. Vinson will ended its deployment with a homeport shift to Norfolk, Va., and commenced a three-year refuel and complex overhaul at Northrop Grumman Newport News Ship Yard in Fall 2005.

The Carl Vinson Strike Group met U.S. commitments in the Pacific while transiting to the Arabian Gulf where it was on station for more than 100 days in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom (OIF) and in support of maritime security operations (MSO) in the Gulf. While on station in the Gulf, aircraft from CVW-9 flew more than 6,500 sorties and more than 20,000 hours.

While operating in the Arabian Gulf the Carl Vinson Strike Group also engaged with local governments, militaries, and people -- promoting cooperation and coordination among the nations of the Gulf in order to further maritime security and good will throughout the region. This was done through a wide variety of exercises, hosted receptions, and port visits throughout the region.

The Strike Group was able to demonstrate the coalition's good will by twice coming to the aid of mariners in distress. On May 11, USS Mustin (DDG 89) and USS Carl Vinson came to the aid of the motor vessel Olympias that was on fire forcing the crew abandoning ship. The quick action of the Carl Vinson Strike Group team ensured the safe evacuation and repatriation of the crew of 27. Also on June 4, Carl Vinson rendered assistance to an Iranian fishing dhow that had a severely ill crew member on board. Once again the quick action of the Carl Vinson Strike Group team got him the medical treatment he required and returned him to his vessel once he was treated and could medically be transferred.

After completing its highly successful deployment to the Gulf, Carl Vinson transited the Red Sea and Suez Canal en route to the Mediterranean Sea. While transiting the Mediterranean, the Carl Vinson Strike Group continued to meet U.S. commitments throughout the region as it steamed on its way home to its new homeport of Norfolk, Va.

During Carl Vinson's global deployment it made numerous port calls including the island of Guam, the Republic of Singapore, the country of Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates (twice), the island of Rhodes, Greece, and Lisbon, Portugal. During seven port visits, Strike Group Sailors and Marines participate in 19 community relations projects, amounting to 2,280 hours of service to host nations.

Additionally, the crew of Carl Vinson achieved some significant accomplishments while on deployment. On April 18 the crew learned that Carl Vinson was selected as the 2004 Battle "E" recipient for west coast aircraft carriers. The Battle "E" recognizes a command's sustained superior performance in an operational environment through the calendar year. This was the fourth Battle "E" for Carl Vinson with the last one being awarded for 2002.

USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) arrived at its new homeport of Naval Station Norfolk, Virginia, on July 31, 2005 following the completion a seven-month trip around the world.

Chronology

    31 Jul 2005 - Arrives at Norfolk
    26 Jul 2005 - Atlantic Ocean
    20 Jul 2005 - Port visit, Lisbon, Portugal
    19 Jul 2005 - Atlantic Ocean
    19 Jul 2005 - Transits Strait of Gibraltar
    15 Jul 2005 - Mediterranean Sea
    11 Jul 2005 - Port visit, Rhodes, Greece
    8 Jul 2005 - Mediterranean Sea
    6 Jul 2005 - Red Sea
    30 Jun 2005 - Concludes Persian Gulf Ops
    20 May 2005 - Persian Gulf
    23 Mar 2005 - Persian Gulf
    19 Mar 2005 - Relieved CVN-75 Truman
    15 Mar 2005 - North Arabian Sea
    14 Mar 2005 - Arabian Sea
    10 Mar 2005 - Indian Ocean
    07 Mar 2005 - Port visti, Singapore
    28 Feb 2005 - Pacific Ocean
    25 Feb 2005 - Philippine Sea
    23 Feb 2005 - Port visit, Guam
    02 Feb 2005 - Pacific Ocean
    01 Feb 2005 - Deploys
    31 Jan 2005 - Port visit, San Diego
    30 Jan 2005 - Completes JTFEX
    13 Jan 2005 - Begins JTFEX
    07 Oct 2004 - Pacific Ocean
    04 Oct 2004 - Port visit, San Diego
    02 Oct 2004 - Completes COMPTUEX



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