The US Navy decommissioned the USS Bunker Hill in a ceremony held at San Diego’s Naval Base on September 22, 2023.
The Ticonderoga class cruiser has become the 3rd guided missile cruiser to leave the naval service in San Diego this summer. In the previous month, the US Navy decommissioned the USS Mobile Bay and USS Lake Chaplain in ceremonies held in San Diego.
USS Bunker Hill was honoured for its 37 years of commendable service in the presence of many distinguished personalities, including the warship’s 2nd commanding officer, retired Vice Admiral Rodney Rempt. He appreciated the ship’s crew and wished them the very best as they bid the last goodbye to their warship.
Bunker Hill’s Final Commanding Officer, Captain Jason Rogers, spoke about the crew’s service and appreciated all those who worked on the warship.
With great pride, I acknowledge the dedication and valour of the sailors who served aboard this ship for the past 37 years,” said Rogers. “The USS Bunker Hill’s legacy is a testament to our commitment to national security. As we lower the flag one final time, we honour the past while embracing the Navy’s future.”
The ship was named after a battle in the Revolutionary War. It was commissioned on September 20, 1986, in Charlestown, Boston. She was constructed by Ingalls Shipyard Company in Pascagoula, Mississippi.
Bunker Hill had a crew of 40 officers, 31 chiefs and 300 enlisted sailors. She was the 1st U.S surface warship with a below deck, advanced MK 41 Vertical Launching System, and a multi-warfare missile launching system for striking air, land and underwater targets.
The ship operated in the North Arabian Sea and the Gulf of Oman in 1987 and reached the new homeport of Naval Base Yokosuka, Japan, the next year. The warship participated in Operation Desert Storm and Operation Desert Shield. She also supported US military efforts on the Carribean Island, devastated by an earthquake in 2010.
The Ticonderoga cruisers are being taken over by the newest version of the Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, which are similar to the former in size but have far more advanced radar systems and other upgraded features.
References: timesofsandiego, navy.mil
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