The George H.W. Bush Carrier Strike Group (GHWBCSG) relieved the Harry S. Truman CSG (HSTCSG) in the Ionian Sea, Aug. 27, 2022.
The relief marked the presence of two U.S. Navy aircraft carriers operating with one another in the Mediterranean, as well as GHWBCSG’s official assumption of Commander, Task Force 60 responsibilities in the U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations. HSTCSG's transit through the Strait of Gibraltar on Aug. 30 followed the dual carrier operations.
“We have the watch,” said Rear Adm. Dennis Velez, commander, GHWBCSG, Carrier Strike Group 10. “The Truman and Bush Strike Groups represent a force that only a U.S. Navy carrier strike group can provide combatant commanders. The Truman Strike Group executed the mission, reassured our partners and allies, and gave our diplomats opportunities to negotiate from a position of strength. They served our nation and the region well. We are proud of our teammates and wish them well on their return to friends and family.”
Velez and Rear Adm. Paul Spedero, Jr., commander, HSTCSG, CSG-8, met aboard USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) to discuss regional maritime security, task force operations, and building relationships with NATO allies to strengthen deterrence and defense efforts.
“This has been a meaningful deployment for our strike group,” said Spedero. “We demonstrated our Navy’s resounding commitment to the NATO Alliance and to our partners in the region. Our Sailors set the stage for future operations and I look forward to seeing what the Bush’s strike group will accomplish during their deployment.”
The GHWBCSG will work alongside the Joint Force, partners, and allies throughout the region while in the Naval Forces Europe, Naval Forces Africa, U.S. Sixth Fleet area of operations,.
While operating together the CSGs conducted a face-to-face turnover between commanders and transferred ammunition. Additionally, the strike group teams worked together to create a unique opportunity for family members embarked on either carrier to spend quality time with one another aboard George H.W. Bush.
The GHWBCSG is an integrated combat weapons system that delivers superior combat capability to deter, and if necessary, defeat America’s adversaries in support of national security. GHWBCSG’s major command elements are USS. George H.W. Bush (CVN 77), Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 7, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 26, the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Leyte Gulf (CG 55), and the Information Warfare Commander.
The ships of DESRON 26 within the GHWBCSG are USS Nitze (DDG 94), USS Truxtun (DDG 103), USS Farragut (DDG 99), and USS Delbert D. Black (DDG 119).
The squadrons of CVW-7 embarked aboard George H.W. Bush are the “Jolly Rogers” of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 103, the “Pukin Dogs” of VFA-143, the “Bluetails” of Carrier Airbone Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 121, the “Nightdippers” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 5, the “Sidewinders” of VFA-86, the “Nighthawks” of VFA-136, the “Patriots” of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 140, and the “Grandmasters” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 46.
Truman serves as the flagship of the HSTCSG and is commanded by Capt. Gavin Duff. Additional units include the nine squadrons of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1, commanded by Capt. Patrick Hourigan, to include Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 11 “Red Rippers;” VFA-211 “Fighting Checkmates;” VFA-34 “Blue Blasters;” VFA-81 “Sunliners;” Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 137 “Rooks;” Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 126 “Seahawks;” Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 11 “Dragon Slayers;” Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM)72 “Proud Warriors;” and a detachment from Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) 40 “Rawhides.”
The staff and guided-missile destroyers of Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 28 commanded by Capt. Blair Guy have included USS Cole (DDG 67) USS Bainbridge (DDG 96), USS Gravely (DDG 107),USS Jason Dunham (DDG 109), and USS Forrest Sherman (DDG 98). The strike group also consists of the Ticonderoga class guided-missile cruiser USS San Jacinto (CG 56), commanded by Capt. Christopher Marvin.
For more information about the George H.W. Bush Carrier Strike Group you can visit its official website, Facebook, or LinkedIn page. For more information about the ship you can visit its Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, or official webpage.