USS Mitscher Operates With French Frigate L'Hermione

Navy News Service

Story Number: NNS150605-15
Release Date: 6/5/2015 3:14:00 PM

By Lt. j.g. Karina Monroe, USS Mitscher Public Affairs

ATLANTIC OCEAN (NNS) -- The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Mitscher (DDG 57) received the honor of steaming alongside the replica Concorde-class frigate L'Hermione of the French Navy.

The morning of June 2, Mitscher and L'Hermione sailed together in a photograph exercise to represent and reaffirm the historic relationship between the United States and France. L'Hermione is a replica of the same-named vessel that was one of four fast-frigates constructed in the Rochefort Naval Dockyard by order of the French Crown in 1778.

L'Hermione has a history intertwined with the birth of the United States as an independent nation. The L'Hermione sailed across the Atlantic in 1780 with Gilbert Motier, also known as Marquis de Lafayette, hailing the news that the French would support the American colonists in the Revolutionary War, ultimately leading to our freedom.

After the news of the French support, L'Hermione supported the American colonists in several distinguished naval battles. She dueled with the Iris off the coast of Long Island and L'Hermione and L'Astree showed naval prowess defeating 18 British ships off the coast of Nova Scotia.

Symbolically, L'Hermione participated in the blockade in the famous battle of Yorktown. Now in 2015, her replica will pull into that same port.

Cmdr. Milciades 'Tony' Then, Mitscher's commanding officer, felt that, 'it was an honor to welcome L'Hermione to U.S. waters. L'Hermione is a testament to the Franco-American alliance of our Revolutionary War, an alliance that stands strong still today. We wished the Hermione and her crew best wishes on her voyage up the East Coast, and on behalf of the U.S. Navy, fair winds and following seas.'

It is no mistake that Mitscher was chosen to have the honor of participating in her sails across the Atlantic. Earlier this year, Mitscher was the first U.S. naval warship to be a part of a French carrier strike group alongside the French Navy nuclear-powered aircraft carrier FS Charles de Gaulle (R91) and French Navy Horizon-class frigate FS Chevalier Paul (D621). Similarly, Mitscher was the first U.S. naval warship to conduct an underway replenishment with a French oiler, FS Meuse (A607). The success of Mitscher's cooperative joint operations is a testament to the strong military relations shared between France and the U.S., as well as the fortitude and strength our nations develop when working together.

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