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Bataan Earns 2007 Battle "E" Award

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS080317-09
Release Date: 3/17/2008 3:15:00 PM

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (SW/AW) Joanne De Vera, USS Bataan Public Affairs

PORTSMOUTH, Va. (NNS) -- Commander, Naval Surface Forces (SURFOR) awarded the crew of the multi-purpose amphibious assault ship USS Bataan (LHD 5) with the Battle Effectiveness (Battle "E") award for 2007 on Feb. 28.

SURFOR presents the award to ships and crews around the fleet who present the maximum condition of departmental readiness in their group and their capability to perform wartime tasks.

The award is Bataan's fourth in her eight-year history. The ship last received the Battle "E" award for calendar year 2004.

"The Navy has set standards and expectations for the fleet," said Capt. Rick Snyder, Bataan's commanding officer. "The crew of Bataan, both in homeport and overseas, has demonstrated that they exceed those standards and I couldn't be more proud."

To earn the award, Bataan had to have sustained superior performance in six categories: maritime warfare; engineering and survivability; command, control communications and information warfare; logistics management; safety and efficiency excellence. The crew's scores for Unit Level Training Assessment-Sustainment, which they completed toward the end of the deployment, proved their level of proficiency in those mission areas.

Bataan's Command Master Chief Jim Tubbs, said he was not surprised about the award.

"The award merely confirms to the rest of the Navy what we already know – that we have a great team aboard," said Tubbs. "Team Bataan runs on all cylinders, with outstanding leaders on the front lines and a great crew providing support. We all work hard every day, and the Battle 'E' shows the crew that Big Navy sees that as well."

Bataan's crew had a busy 2007 on the path to the Battle "E." The year began with a regularly scheduled six-month deployment to the Mediterranean Sea, Horn of Africa and Persian Gulf in support of Maritime Security Operations and Theater Support Cooperation exercises. While deployed, Bataan was the flagship of the Bataan Expeditionary Strike Group, acting as the command and control center for numerous exercises and operations. Bataan returned to her home port of Norfolk on July 3.

One month later, the warship returned to sea and successfully conducted an ammunitions offload at Naval Weapons Station Earle, N.J. The month of September brought with it a new home for the mighty warship at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, Va., for an eight month depot planned maintenance availability (DPMA) period.

"We knew we had a great year, and we knew we served our country," said Snyder. "The Battle 'E' just validates that."

Bataan is more than halfway through her eight-month DPMA period at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard. Bataan is the fifth ship of the Navy's Wasp-class ships. She was commissioned Sept. 20, 1997, and is the second U.S. Navy warship to bear the name.

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