USS Bonhomme Richard
Landing craft air cushion (LCAC) 47 disembarks from the well deck of amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6). Bonhomme Richard is the lead ship of the Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group and is participating in a certification exercise (CERTEX) with the embarked 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Jeanette Mullinax/Released)
Bonhomme Richard ARG, 31st MEU Complete CERTEX
By Mass communication Specialist 3rd Class(SW/AW) James Vazquez Navy Public Affairs Support Element West

USS BONHOMME RICHARD, At Sea (NNS) — Amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6), flag ship of the Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group (BHRARG), and amphibious dock landing ship USS Germantown (LSD 42), arrived in White Beach, Okinawa after completing a 9-day certification exercise (CERTEX) with the embarked 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) in the East China Sea, Feb. 28.

CERTEX is a comprehensive, complex training evolution that combines Navy and Marine Corps maritime and sea-to-shore capabilities. The ARG was evaluated on a wide range of complex scenarios. These scenarios tested their ability to operate in several mission critical areas ranging from maritime boarding and combat flight operations to amphibious landings, raids and civilian evacuation drills.

“CERTEX is an opportunity to put our interoperability to the test,” said Capt. Ed Thompson, commander, amphibious squadron 11. “Integration with the 31st MEU is essential to the ARG’s mission readiness. Each scenario demanded a series of aircraft, landing craft, equipment and personnel movements. The blue-green team drove the problem and safely executed the mission. I am proud of what our team accomplished over the past 9 days.”

During CERTEX Bonhomme Richard and Germantown Sailors and Marines supported over 250 flight deck operations and conducted over ten landing craft launch and recovery evolutions demonstrating Navy and Marine Corps maritime and sea-to-shore capabilities.

Bonhomme Richard ARG is comprised of amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) and amphibious dock landing ships USS Germantown (LSD 42) and USS Ashland (LSD 48).

For more information about Amphibious Squadron 11, visit our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/PHIBRON11.

For more news from Commander, Amphibious Force, U.S. 7th Fleet, visit www.public.navy.mil/surfor/esg7/Pages/default.aspx

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