YOKOSUKA, Japan - The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Lassen (DDG 82) returned to Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka Dec. 6, after completing a two-month Fall Patrol as a part of the George Washington Carrier Strike Group in the 7th area of operation.
"I am so very proud of Lassen Sailors and their performance this underway and throughout 2013,” said Cmdr. Scott McClelland, Lassen’s commanding officer. “The impact that they have had on operations in 7th Fleet and the strengthening of partnerships in the area of responsibility is nothing short of phenomenal.”
Lassen joined the George Washington Carrier Strike Group making port calls to Singapore and Hong Kong, where the crew had the opportunity to experience the sights and culture. Many crew members also participated in a community service project, the Meals in Homes program, in Hong Kong that allowed them to interact with the host nation and assist the local community on a personal level. In Singapore, Sailors played games and interacted with local children of an at-risk youth center.
During the Hong Kong port visit, Lassen’s Supply Department underwent Supply Management Certification (SMC), an inspection which takes place every two years.
“SMC was a very tough inspection,” said Logistics Specialist Chief Forson. “The long hours that we put into preparing for it paid off. We passed with a 94 percent and now we can all look back and be proud of our hard work.”
Additionally, Lassen was one of the first ships to arrive on station after Typhoon Haiyan devastated part of the Philippines in November. During Operation Damayan, Lassen’s embarked helicopter detachment of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 51 delivered more than 87,000 pounds of water, food, survival supplies, and medical equipment over an eight-day period. Lassen also served as a re-fueling deck by providing nearly 10,000 gallons of fuel to other helicopters supporting relief operations.
As Lassen’s 2013 Patrol came to an end, its Sailors reflected on all that took place between October and December, from the advancement of six new Chief Petty Officers and 23 Seamen to Second Class Petty Officers. The crew is now ready to spend some much deserved time with family and friends for the Holidays.
Lassen, assigned to Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 15, is forward-deployed to Yokosuka.