Amphibious Squadron ONE (CPR1) was established on 1 October 1954, and is home ported in San Diego, California. The squadron’s primary mission is to plan and execute amphibious operations. This includes the embarkation of Marines, transiting to an objective area, and conducting assaults under combat conditions while employing the latest and most effective amphibious force doctrine.
Amphibious Squadron ONE has participated in numerous worldwide amphibious operations in war and peace.
These operations have been varied and wide ranging, including: evacuation of the Tachen Islands in 1955; support of national policy during the Cuban Missile Crisis of 1962; clearance of mines from North Vietnamese waters in Operation END SWEEP in 1973; the evacuation of the US Embassy in Phnom Penh, Cambodia during Operation EAGLE PULL in 1975; numerous KANGAROO and VALIANT USHER exercises in Australia; TEAM SPIRIT exercises in Thailand and Somalia as well in Hawaii and Southern California; support of OPERATIONS ENDURING FREEDOM and IRAQI FREEDOM; participation in Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercises.
In 1983, COMPHIBRON ONE’s Amphibious Ready Group ALPHA became the first Pacific Fleet amphibious squadron to transit the Suez Canal for duty supporting the Multi-national Peacekeeping Forces in Beirut, Lebanon under the operational control of Commander, Sixth Fleet.
During the Western Pacific in 1986, Amphibious Squadron ONE and the THIRTEENTH Marine Amphibious Unit (13th MEU) operated the Mastiff Remotely Piloted Vehicle from USS Tarawa (LHA-1). This was the Navy’s first deployment of the unmanned drone aboard a Navy ship. Participating in Operations EAGLE PULL and FREQUENT WIND, the Squadron was awarded the Navy and Meritorious Unit Commendations. Indian Ocean operations during the period of 8 August through 30 September 1980 earned COMPHIBRON ONE the navy and Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal.
Contingency operations in the Eastern Mediterranean in 1983 earned the Squadron the Navy Expeditionary Medal and a second award for the Meritorious Unit Commendation. Certified as Marine Expeditionary Unit/Special Operations Capable (MEU/SOC), Amphibious Squadron ONE was ready to deploy 15 November 1990. World events necessitated a larger force requirement overseas in which COMPHIBRON ONE formed the centerline of a 13 ship Amphibious Task Force in the Arabian Gulf in support of Operations DESERT SHIELD and DESERT STORM. This was the largest West Coast deployment from the United States since 1965. For their service, COMPHIBRON ONE was awarded the Navy Unit Commendation Southwest Asia Service Medal and the Kuwait Liberation medal.
During deployment in 1998, COMPHIBRON ONE participated in Operations SOUTHERN WATCH, SILENT ASSURANCE, NEON FALCON and EAGER MACE. It also participated in combined CVBG operations with the Nimitz and George Washington Battle Groups. These operations clearly demonstrated U.S. resolve to maintain peace and stability in the United States Central Command Area of Operations.
While returning home from assistance operations in East Timor in 2001, COMPHIBRON ONE and the Peleliu Amphibious Ready Group (PELARG) were diverted following the 9/11 attacks to support OPERATION ENDURING FREEDOM. They departed from Sydney, Austria and headed for the North Arabian Sea. In the ensuing four months, the ARG/MEU team conducted a variety of operations critical to the War on Terrorism. Most notable was the execution of the longest amphibious raid in the United States Navy/Marine Corps history to establish the first conventional ground forces in Afghanistan – a distance in excess of 400 miles. In 2003, COMPHIBRON ONE and the seven ships of Amphibious Task Force West deployed and rendezvoused with Amphibious Task Force East in support of OPERATION IRAQI FREEDOM, this was the largest Amphibious Task Force deployed since World War II. COMPHIBRON ONE served as Commander, Task Force 51, in charge of seventeen amphibious ships in the Arabian Gulf.
During 2005-2008, COMPHIBRON ONE deployed as a EXPEDITIONARY STRIKE GROUP force to handle complex multi0faceted operations, including quick reaction crisis options in maritime, littoral and inland environment in support of U.S. policy. These include OPERATION FORESAIL ’05, BRIGHT STAR ’05, RIMPAC ’06 as assuming duties of CPR-7 ships; and OPERATION SEA ANGEL II (2007) in support of Disaster Relief in Bangladesh.
Recently, COMPHIBRON ONE conducted 3 bilateral exercises; back to back IRON FIST ’08-09 and VALIENT MARK ’09. Within the first 9 months of 2009, COMPHIBRON ONE spent planning and executing Pacific Partnership 09 (PP09). CPR1 deployed as Mission Commander onboard USNS Richard E. Byrd on June 2009 and conducted Humanitarian Civil Assistance in the FIJI Islands. Working alongside with US Joint Service Medical and Engineering Civil Action Projects (MEDCAPs/ENCAPs) they served more than 22,000 patients, 18 projects including a 186 ft bridge connecting North and South Tarawa in Kiribati. After returning from a successful PP09 deployment, COMPHIBRON ONE sailed to participate as the Command Element to Commander Third Fleet (C3F) during the 61st Annual Seattle Seafair.
The Amphibious Squadron Commander with his staff is charged with responsibilities for planning and executing amphibious operations and deployment with a reinforce Marine Battalion. The staff is capable of planning and executing amphibious assaults at the Marine Expeditionary Unit level with augmenting detachments from a Tactical Air Control Squadron (TACRON), Naval Beach Group (NBG), Special Warfare Group (SWG), Explosive Ordinance Disposal Team (EOD), and Fleet Surgical Team (FST). Additionally it serves as Naval Forces Commander in various Joint Task Force Operations. It also functions for the Commander in the operational readiness of each ship.
COMPHIBRON ONE is prepared to perform tasks across a wide operational spectrum supporting contingency requirements and to control ships and forces during operations, exercises and deployments.