The U.S. Navy’s second Zumwalt-class guided-missile destroyer, the future USS Michael Monsoor (DDG 1001), completed a successful port visit onboard Naval Station Mayport, Florida, Nov. 13-16.
The visit marked Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Michael Monsoor’s first introduction to the fleet.
With its sleek, stealth design and unique, wave-piercing tumblehome hull, the new destroyer drew many groups from the surrounding ships and shore commands, including staff from Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command (COMUSNAVSO) and U.S. 4th Fleet, sailors from the guided-missile destroyer USS Roosevelt (DDG 80), officers from Afloat Training Group Mayport, and a group of foreign liaison officers from the navies of Argentina, Peru, Brazil, and Colombia.
“Mayport was a great way to continue to gain shiphandling and navigation proficiency,” said Capt. Scott Smith, commanding officer of Michael Monsoor. “With excellent pilots who take the time to train shiphandlers and the great port facilities, we were able to learn about our ship in a safe environment. We also enjoyed seeing old friends from the waterfront and discussing our contribution to the fight.”
In addition to the training value, the ship’s crew members also performed maintenance and conducted classroom training while moored. Additionally, the crew was able to enjoy liberty and recreational events.
“It was great to be able to walk around and take advantage of all the MWR (Morale, Welfare, and Recreation) facilities on base,” said Gunner’s Mate 1st Class Joseph O’Connell. “I also helped with a few of the tours in port, which I enjoyed.”
DDG 1001 honors Master-at-Arms 2nd Class Michael A. Monsoor, a Navy SEAL who was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for his heroic actions in Ramadi, Iraq, Sept. 29, 2006. At the ship’s 2008 naming ceremony, former Secretary of the Navy, Donald C. Winter recognized Monsoor as, “a consummate professional who faced terrorist enemies with aplomb and stoicism.”
Zumwalt-class destroyers are the most technologically-advanced warships ever built by the U.S. Navy, with computing capabilities able to increase range, deception, computer integration, and data analysis from various platforms. With its stealth, size, power, and advanced combat systems, this warship will serve as a centerpiece for deterrence and power projection in the surface environment.
Michael Monsoor is currently transiting to San Diego, and, upon arrival, will begin a combat availability and then undergo a combat test period. The ship is scheduled to be commissioned into the Navy Jan. 26, 2019, in Coronado, Calif.