Thursday, October 15, 2020

U.S. Navy’s newest amphibious assault ship arrives in San Diego

The U.S. Navy’s newest America-class amphibious assault ship USS Tripoli (LHA 7) arrives at its new homeport at Naval Base San Diego, the service has announced.

At the announcement, the U.S. Navy reported that the latest America-class amphibious assault ship, USS Tripoli arrived at Naval Base San Diego following its commissioning and subsequent sail around South America this summer.

“Our Sailors did an outstanding job in getting Tripoli safely to our new homeport of San Diego,” said Capt. Kevin Meyers, Tripoli’s commanding officer. “Now, we shift our focus to preparing this ship for her future mission: supporting combat operations and providing humanitarian assistance around the globe, in the air, on land, and sea.”

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Tripoli, the only America-class amphibious assault ship in San Diego, joins the Wasp-class large deck amphibious assault vessels USS Essex (LHD 2), USS Boxer (LHD 4), USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6), and USS Makin Island (LHD 8). As the largest amphibious ship on the waterfront, Tripoli serves as an LHD variant designed to accommodate the Marine Corps’ future Air Combat Element (ACE) including the F-35B Lightning II and MV-22 Osprey.

“Tripoli serves as a fine example of our Sailors’ ability to learn, adapt, and continuously improve even in the face of uncertainty,” said Capt. Jennifer Ellinger, commodore of Amphibious Squadron (CPR) 7. “The ship’s arrival here today is exciting and the crew has worked diligently to get to this point.”

Tripoli’s arrival brings approximately 1,100 Sailors and their family members to the San Diego area.

“It will be nice to get the ship to her homeport in San Diego, a city that is renowned for its continuing support of our service members,” said Master Chief Alicia Harrison, Tripoli’s acting Command Master Chief. “This crew has not ceased to amaze me in how they have risen to every challenge from ship’s delivery, to crew move aboard, to operating under new health guidelines, to sail around.”

Tripoli is the second LHA to be delivered to the Navy, and the third in naval history to bear the name which harkens back to the first U.S. battle fought on foreign soil. The name Tripoli was previously assigned to a Casablanca-class escort carrier which saw service in the Second World War. Later, the first amphibious assault ship with the name USS Tripoli (LPH 10) served in Vietnam and during the Gulf War.

Tripoli was built in Pascagoula, Mississippi, by Huntington Ingalls Industries. Prior to departing for San Diego, Tripoli’s crew conducted a 14-day restriction of movement (ROM) in accordance with U.S. Navy pre-deployment guidelines. In addition, the Navy cancelled the ship’s traditional commissioning ceremony as a COVID mitigation measure. The Navy commissioned Tripoli via naval message on 15 July and transitioned the ship into service as scheduled.

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Executive Editor

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