The U.S. Navy Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Roosevelt (DDG 80) departed Naval Station Mayport to commence its homeport shift to Rota, Spain, on March 21.
Named in honor of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and his wife Eleanor, Roosevelt will be the first Flight IIA Arleigh Burke-class destroyer stationed at Naval Station Rota. She will replace USS Carney (DDG 64) as one of four U.S. Navy Forward Deployed Naval Forces (FDNF) ships in Spain.
The Flight IIA ships, beginning with USS Oscar Austin (DDG-79), have several new features. Among the changes is the addition of two hangars which provides the ability to deploy with two organic LAMPS (Light Airborne Multi-Purpose System) MK III MH-60 anti-submarine warfare (ASW) helicopters embarked.
“My crew is excited and proud to execute this homeport shift to Rota, said Cmdr. Matthew Molmer, commanding officer, USS Roosevelt. “The hard work, dedication and shear level of effort put forth by my crew over the previous year will ensure delivery of a combat ready ship, with a battle-minded crew to the forefront of Naval Forces forward-deployed to Rota, in support of Sixth Fleet Operations.”
To prepare to homeport shift, Roosevelt took part in the Dwight D. Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group’s Composite Unit Training Exercise (COMPTUEX). COMPTUEX is designed to fully integrate a strike group as a cohesive, multi-mission fighting force, and test the group’s ability to carry out sustained combat operations from the sea. Upon completion of COMPTUEX, Roosevelt is certified and ready to execute the full spectrum of maritime operations in any theater.
Naval Station Mayport has served as Roosevelt’s homeport since her commissioning in 2000. The naval base is capable of accommodating 34 ships and has an 8,000-foot (2,400 m) runway capable of handling any aircraft in the Department of Defense inventory.
Roosevelt joins Arleigh Burke-class destroyers USS Ross (DDG 71), USS Donald Cook (DDG 75), USS Porter (DDG 78) as the newest member of FDNF Spain, replacing USS Carney (DDG 64). Carney will return to Naval Station Mayport, where the ship was stationed until forward deploying to Rota in Sept. 2015.
These multi-mission ships focus on ballistic missile defense (BMD) in the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean.