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LPD 8 Dubuque

USS DUBUQUE is the fifth AUSTIN-class (LSD 4) amphibious transport dock. This class of ship combines three functions: dock landing, attack personnel transport, and cargo handling. DUBUQUE has a large flight deck for helicopter operations as well as a well deck that carries amphibious landing vehicles such as the LCU and LCAC. In addition, DUBUQUE is configured as a flagship and provides extensive command, control and communications facilities to support an Amphibious Task Force Commander and Landing Force Commander. In an amphibious assault, DUBUQUE would normally function as the Primary Control Ship that would be responsible for coordinating boat waves and vectoring landing craft to the beach.

USS DUBUQUE can embark up to 840 Marines, 90 flag personnel, and 6 helicopters when deployed.

USS DUBUQUE was commissioned on 1 September 1967, at Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, Virginia. In November 1967, the ship arrived at its first homeport of San Diego, California after transiting the Panama Canal. From 1968 to 1975, DUBUQUE made five Western Pacific deployments that saw extensive duty in Vietnam. In a highly publicized event in October 1968, the ship returned 14 repatriated prisoners of war to North Vietnam. From 1969 to 1971, the ship conducted ten KEYSTONE CARDINAL troop lifts to Okinawa as part of the "Vietnamization" of the war. From February to June 1973, the ship operated helicopters that conducted mine clearance operations in Haiphong Harbor. In April 1975, the ship participated in the evacuation of Saigon and the rescue of refugees fleeing South Vietnam.

On 15 August 1985, USS DUBUQUE departed San Diego for its new homeport of Sasebo, Japan. The ship arrived in Sasebo on 4 September 1985 to join the U. S. SEVENTH Fleet Overseas Family Residency Program. Since joining the SEVENTH Fleet, the primary mission of the ship has been the support of U. S. Marines stationed in the Western Pacific.

In May 1988, USS DUBUQUE deployed to the Arabian Gulf and served as the control ship for mine sweeping operations to protect U. S.-flagged tankers during the Iran-Iraq War. For its participation in this operation, the ship was awarded the Meritorious Unit Citation. In 1989, the ship participated in the contingency operation to evacuate U. S. personnel from the Philippines during a failed coup attempt.

Immediately following the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in August 1990, USS DUBUQUE received tasking in the Arabian Gulf as part of Operation DESERT SHIELD. The ship functioned as the leading element of Amphibious Ready Group Bravo, which transported Marine Regimental Landing Team Four to Al Jubayl, Saudi Arabia during the critical early stages of the multi-national buildup.

In 1992, USS DUBUQUE celebrated 25 years of distinguished service. It has received three Battle Efficiency Awards and participated in countless amphibious exercises and operations throughout the Western Pacific and Indian Oceans. That the ship is still in such magnificent condition is a tribute to the long line of sailors who served onboard in the past quarter century.

The DUBUQUE insignia signifies the origin of the name, the previous ship to bear this name as well as today's warship.

The dominant figure eight backed by the drawn sword represents DUBUQUE's ever-present capability to stand steadfast in defense of our country. The raised tower located in the lower portion of the number eight is reference to the gravesite of Julien Dubuque, founder of the City of Dubuque. The two raised stars centered on either side of the shield symbolize the two U. S. Navy ships to bear the name of DUBUQUE, PG 17 and LPD 8.

The ship's motto, "Our Country, Heritage, and Future," was created by a member of the commissioning crew. It expresses the deep feeling of pride and respect the DUBUQUE crew have for their country. Navy sailors of the past, including those of the first DUBUQUE (PG 17) have exemplified a rich heritage of building, upholding, and defending the United States. Sailors of the present crew of DUBUQUE, and all who serve aboard hereafter, are pledged to support and defend the United States to ensure our country an equally glorious future.

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Page last modified: 05-07-2011 01:57:53 ZULU