Tag Archives: USS Porter (DDG 78)

Bright Lights, Ancient Seas

From Commander, 6th Fleet PAO:

The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) entered the Black Sea on a routine patrol, January 28, 2021, while conducting multi-domain operations with a U.S. Navy P-8A aircraft from Patrol Squadron VP-46 and NATO Air Command aircraft E-3A Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS).

Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG-78) transits the Black Sea, Jan 28, 2021

Porter joins USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) and the Henry J. Kaiser-class underway replenishment oiler, USNS Laramie (T-AO-203) in the Black Sea to maintain maritime security alongside other NATO Allies and partners. The ships’ combined operations further strengthen interoperability and demonstrate resolve to Black Sea peace and security.

Porter is excited to be back in the Black Sea demonstrating our continued commitment to security and stability in the region with our NATO Allies and partners,” said Cmdr. Thomas Ralston, commanding officer of Porter. “The crew and I look forward to enhancing our combined readiness and naval capability.”

Time-limited to just a 21-day stint due to the Montreux Convention, which bars warships belonging to non-riparian states from longer visits even under the invitation of Black Sea nations, the Soviets Russians typically have a bit of indigestion about U.S. Navy ships bobbing around in what they regard largely as an inland sea of theirs, much akin to how we see Lake Superior. With that, expect Russian aircraft/vessels to come “unprofessionally” close to Porter and associates in the next couple of weeks. 

Rap, rap, rapping on the Bastion door

“Three Arleigh Burke-class Aegis destroyers — USS Donald Cook, USS Porter, and USS Roosevelt — are supported by fast combat support ship USNS Supply and joined by the Royal Navy’s HMS Kent to assert freedom of navigation and demonstrate seamless integration among allies,” a U.S. Navy news release said.

Not a big deal, as such joint operations happen every day somewhere in the maritime domain.

What is a big deal, is that the exercise involved said surface action group chilling out above the Arctic Circle in the Barents Sea, long a “safe” boomer bastion for the Russian Northern Fleet. Further, other than for Norway which is a “local” in the region, the task force was the largest NATO operation in the region in about 25 years.

ARCTIC OCEAN (May 5, 2020) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78), front, the Royal Navy Type-23 Duke-class frigate HMS Kent (F78), the fast combat support ship USNS Supply (T-AOE 6) and USS Roosevelt (DDG 80) conduct joint operations to ensure maritime security in the Arctic Ocean, May 5, 2020. (U.S. Navy photo courtesy of the Royal Navy by Royal Navy Photographer Dan Rosenbaum/Released)

ADM James Foggo, the commander of U.S. Naval Forces in Europe and the commander of NATO’s Allied Joint Force Command in Naples, Italy, said there will be more deployments and more exercises in the High North.

“The Russians are operating with state-of-the-art nuclear submarines,” he said. “That said, we still have the competitive advantage. But they’re good, and getting better.”

More on what that means, here.

Coming in hot

ATLANTIC OCEAN (March 29, 2020) A P-8A Poseidon aircraft assigned to the “Skinny Dragons” of Patrol Squadron (VP) 4 flies alongside the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) during a photo exercise, March 29, 2020.

(U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Juan Sua/Released) 200329-N-CR843-0264 

Formed in 1943, VP-4 is currently forward deployed to the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations and is assigned to Commander, Task Force 67, responsible for tactical control of deployed maritime patrol and reconnaissance squadrons throughout Europe and Africa.

After cutting their teeth flying the PV-1 Ventura/PV-2 Harpoon during WWII, the Dragons switched to the P2V-1 Neptune in 1947 then the P-3 Orion in 1966. VP-4 become the first squadron at NAS Whidbey Island to covert to the P-8 Poseidon in October 2016.

Loching around and cherry picking

The sometimes beautiful tale of two hard-serving forward-deployed DDGs this week, waving the flag in far off ports.:

FASLANE, Scotland (March 31, 2019) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) departs Faslane, Scotland, to participate in exercise Joint Warrior 19-1. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Fred Gray IV/Released)

Porter, named for War of 1812 hero Commodore David Porter, and his son, Civil War Adm. David Dixon Porter, was built at Pascagoula and commissioned 20 March 1999. As such, the Flight II Burke doesn’t look bad for 20 years considering she has mixed it up with the Russians in the Black Sea, fired Tomahawks into Syria and survived a collision in 2012 with an oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. She is one of four DDGs assigned to Rota as part of the 6th Fleet.

Located on Gare Loch, Faslane is home to HM Naval Base, Clyde, home to the RN’s Trident fleet as well as the bulk of the country’s subs and minehunters.

YOKOSUKA, Japan (April 4, 2019) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Stethem (DDG 63) is moored at Fleet Activities (FLEACT) Yokosuka (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Tyler R. Fraser/Released)

YOKOSUKA, Japan (April 4, 2019) The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Stethem (DDG 63) is moored at Fleet Activities (FLEACT) Yokosuka (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Tyler R. Fraser/Released)

Stethem, named for SW2 Robert Stethem, the Seabee diver killed by terrorists onboard TWA 847 in 1985, was also built an Ingalls while I worked there (and may or may not have my initials welded in her inner bottom somewhere). This early Flight I Burke commissioned 21 October 1995 and has seen lots of deployments in her 24-years of service. She is homeported in Japan, where the cherry blossoms (Sakura) are breathtaking this time of year.

As a side note, the best Asian John Denver impersonator I ever saw was in Yokosuka.

Navy blaster

Official caption: ROTA, Spain (March 5, 2017) Ship’s Serviceman 3rd Class Samantha Rivera stands topside rover watch aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) while the ship is pier side at Naval Station Rota, Spain. Porter is forward-deployed to Rota, Spain, conducting naval operations in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations in support of U.S. national security interests in Europe. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Ford Williams/Released)

It’s good to see that SH3 Rivera’s M4 is rocking an angled foregrip and a detachable LMT L8A A2 rear sight assembly. Always nice when “commercial off the shelf” works to the advantage.

Good TD as well.

Last of the Rota 4 heads across the pond

The Big Blue first announced in 2012 they were sending a quartet of ABM-enabled Burkes to Spain where they would be forward deployed for emerging threats and provide NATO with some solid ballistic missile defense. Since then, three have gone over and even gotten involved in the Black Sea to a degree in the new cool war between the West and a resurgent Russia.

Now it looks like they will soon be full-up.

10016-N-7408S-012 MEDITTERANNEAN SEA (Jan. 16, 2010) Waves crash over the bow of the guided-missile destroyer USS Carney (DDG 64). Carney is part of the Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group and is deployed as part of an on-going rotation of forward-deployed forces to support maritime security operations in the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Master at Arms Chief Chief Anthony J. Sganga/Released)

10016-N-7408S-012 MEDITTERANNEAN SEA (Jan. 16, 2010) Waves crash over the bow of the guided-missile destroyer USS Carney (DDG 64). Carney is part of the Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group and is deployed as part of an on-going rotation of forward-deployed forces to support maritime security operations in the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibility. (U.S. Navy photo by Master at Arms Chief Chief Anthony J. Sganga/Released)

Per USN:

USS Carney (DDG 64) departed her homeport of Mayport, Florida, Sept. 6 on her way to Rota, Spain, as the final of four Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers to be forward deployed to Spain.

To enhance the security of the European region, Carney will join USS Donald Cook (DDG 75), USS Ross (DDG 71), and USS Porter (DDG 78) who have already made the transition to Spain.

USS Carney and her crew will play a crucial role in the U.S. contribution to NATO’s ballistic missile defense efforts,” said Vice Adm. James Foggo III, commander, U.S. 6th Fleet. “Our forward deployed naval forces (FDNF) based in Rota provide a credible capability and support NATO’s broader commitment to regional security.”

US Navy DDGs arrive in Spain to begin ABM Watch over Europe

Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) launches from the guided-missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) as apart of a joint ballistic missile defense exercise. The new ABM capable DDGs carrying the SM-3 will provide a limited missile umbrella over Europe and North Africa

Standard Missile-3 (SM-3) launches from the guided-missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) as apart of a joint ballistic missile defense exercise. The new ABM capable DDGs carrying the SM-3 will provide a limited missile umbrella over Europe and North Africa. Click to embiggen

NNS140211-05. USS Donald Cook Begins Forward Deployment to Rota, Spain,

From Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S. 6th Fleet Public Affairs

ROTA, Spain (NNS) — The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) arrived at Naval Station Rota to begin her forward deployment to the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations, Feb. 11.

Donald Cook is the first of four Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers to be stationed in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations, and will be joined by other guided-missile destroyers, USS Ross (DDG 71), USS Porter (DDG 78) and USS Carney (DDG 64), over the next two years.

The purpose behind these destroyers’ forward deployments is to enhance the security of the European region. While in U.S. 6th Fleet, these ships will perform numerous missions, including NATO ballistic missile defense, maritime security operations, bi-lateral and multi-lateral training exercises, and NATO operations and deployments.

Ross is scheduled to join Donald Cook in Rota later this year, with Carney and Porter arriving sometime in 2015.