SAN DIEGO -
Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Crew 102, along with the Detachment 4 "Horsemen" Surface Warfare Mission Package (SUW MP) and Detachment 3 from the "Magicians" of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 35, are scheduled to depart San Diego for Singapore May 20 to relieve LCS Crew 103 on USS Fort Worth (LCS 3) as part of a 16-month rotational deployment in support of the Navy's strategic rebalance to the Pacific.
Fort Worth is the first LCS to deploy under the "3-2-1" manning concept, swapping fully trained crews roughly every four months. This concept allows the ship to remain on station longer. The result is an extended LCS forward presence and reduced crew fatigue for the 16-month deployment. It is named 3-2-1 because three rotational crews will support two LCS ships, one of which will always be deployed.
This will be the second deployment for LCS Crew 102, known as "The Gold Crew." The first was aboard USS Freedom (LCS 1) in 2013.
"The LCS Gold Crew is eager to return to 7th Fleet. We were the first rotational crew to deploy USS Freedom in 2013 and we're excited to build on that ground-breaking experience in USS Fort Worth," said Cmdr. Rich Jarrett, commanding officer of LCS Crew 102. "LCS Crews 103 and 104 have set a high bar of excellence and demonstrated a great example for us to follow in Fort Worth's continued 16-month deployment. The vital combination of our well-trained crews, integrated helicopter detachment and surface warfare detachment, along with support from LCS Squadron (LCSRON) 1 and Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 7, will be key to making sure our commitment to the Asia-Indo-Pacific region remains strong."
Fast, agile and mission-focused, littoral combat ships are designed to operate in near-shore environments and employ modular mission packages that can be configured for surface warfare, mine countermeasures, or anti-submarine warfare. Freedom is the lead ship of the Freedom variant for LCS, and is a semi-planing steel monohull with an aluminum superstructure. The ship can reach speeds in excess of 40 knots.
HSM-35 fly the MH-60R Seahawk helicopter and the MQ-8B Fire Scout unmanned aerial system. The surface warfare mission package includes a detachment of 19 Sailors operating the rigid-hull inflatable boats (RHIBs) for visit board search and seizure (VBSS) missions, as well as operating two 30mm Mk 46 Bushmaster cannons.
For more news from USS Fort Worth, visit http://www.public.navy.mil/surfor/lcs3/Pages/default.aspx
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