SAN DIEGO — The Navy’s most technologically advanced surface combatant, USS Zumwalt (DDG 1000), completed her journey to San Diego Thursday, Dec. 8.
Zumwalt’s arrival to her new Southern California homeport concluded a nearly four-month transit from Bath, Maine, which included training operations, various port calls, and a commissioning ceremony in Baltimore. Zumwalt departed Bath Iron Works shipyard Sept. 7 and made several port visits to eastern U.S. Navy fleet concentration areas, such as Norfolk and Mayport, Florida.
“We have looked forward to pulling in to San Diego for a long time,” said USS Zumwalt Commanding Officer Capt. James A. Kirk, about the crew’s excitement to arrive in San Diego. “I can’t express enough, how proud I am of the crew’s hard work in bringing Zumwalt to the West Coast.”
Due to Zumwalt’s status as a unique, first-in-class ship, Sailors were engaged in training evolutions far away from San Diego in various ports, after reporting for duty to the pre-commissioning unit command in Bath. The crew of the Zumwalt took custody of the ship in May and rapidly made final preparations to take the new class of destroyer out to sea. The Sailors went through taxing training and certification events before receiving authorization to depart the shipyard.
“The resiliency and professionalism shown by this team of Sailors is truly amazing. These sea warriors have met every challenge of a first-in-class ship and succeeded at each turn,” said Kirk, reflecting on the accomplishments of the “plankowners,” or first group of Sailors to man the ship.
The crewmembers of Zumwalt now have the opportunity to serve and train with their fellow San Diego Sailors as they prepare for a future of warfighting excellence. Once fully integrated into the surface fleet, the Zumwalt-class destroyers’ stealth, power, and lethality will provide a vital link from the Navy’s current needs to its future capabilities.
Named for Adm. Elmo R. “Bud” Zumwalt Jr., former chief of naval operations (CNO) from 1970 to 1974, the Zumwalt-class destroyer features a state-of-the-art electric propulsion system, a wave-piercing tumblehome hull, stealth design, and the latest warfighting technology and weaponry available.
“USS Zumwalt joins the Fleet as the Navy’s newest, most technologically advanced guided-missile destroyer,” said Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander, Naval Surface Forces. “The ship’s stealth, size, power and computing capacity will enable it to conduct multiple missions today, but this innovative ship is also designed to rapidly integrate new technologies to counter the emerging threats of tomorrow.”