After 24 years in Japan, the USS John S. McCain is relocating to a new home port.
The USS John S. McCain arrived in Naval Station Everett, Wash., on Friday after 24 years in Yokosuka, Japan, according to the Navy.
Since its arrival in the region in the summer of 1997, the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer has operated both independently and alongside carrier strike groups.
The USS John S. McCain has supported joint and multinational exercises and military operations, including troop surges in Iraq, while forward-deployed to Fleet Activities Yokosuka.
It has participated in humanitarian missions, such as supplying aid following the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami.
In a Friday press statement, Capt. Chase Sargeant, Commander, Task Force 71/Destroyer Squadron 15, said, “It’s undoubtedly a changing of the guard with USS John S. McCain and her crew departing the 7th Fleet after over 24 years in Japan.”
“The current and prior crews’ contributions to maintaining peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific cannot be emphasized, and the entire forward-deployed fleet wishes John S. McCain safe passage to her new homeport of Everett, Washington,” Sargeant said.
Ten seamen were killed after the ship collided with a chemical tanker off the coast of Singapore in 2017. It was upgraded and repaired and returned to the sea two years later.
The USS John S. McCain has lately gone through the Taiwan Strait on many occasions, as part of a routine exercise the US says is part of its commitment to a “free and open” Indo-Pacific Ocean.
The USS John S. McCain took part in the annual multinational exercise MALABAR during its most recent seven-month deployment.
MALABAR was a joint exercise between the Indian Navy, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, and the Royal Australian Navy that concentrated on anti-submarine and anti-surface operations.
The USS John S. McCain will be assigned to the US 3rd Fleet, which is in charge of naval forces in the Indo-Pacific region.
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