USS Champion (MCM 4) 

Official U.S. Navy file photo.
U.S., Canadian Navies Complete Mine Countermeasures Exercise 
By Mine Countermeasures Squadron THREE Public Affairs  
SAN DIEGO - The United States Navy and the Royal Canadian Navy completed a four-day, bi-lateral mine countermeasures exercise (MCMEX) off the coast of Southern California Oct. 20.

"MCMEX was a great success which showcased real-world MCM mission readiness and helped forge closer relations with the Royal Canadian Navy," said Capt. Steven A. Mucklow, MCMRON Three deputy commander.

The MCMEX integrated Canadian surface MCM forces, U.S. surface MCM forces, and U.S. underwater MCM Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD). Mine-Countermeasures Squadron (MCMRON)Three, Mine-Countermeasures Division Three-One, HMCS Saskatoon (MM 709), HMCS Brandon (MM 710), HMCS Nanaimo (MM 702), USS Champion (MCM 4), USS Chief (MCM 14), and EOD Mobile Unit ONE Platoon 1-2-2 all participated.

Participants conducted sustained MCM operations, completed a baseline route survey for the upcoming Rim of the Pacific exercise, did ship-to-ship maneuvering exercises, and certified Crew Persistent aboard USS Champion for deployment to the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility.

Goals obtained during MCMEX were improving communications and coordination between U.S. and Canadian forces; identifying, neutralizing, and recovering inert mine shapes; and taking advantage of an opportunity for U.S. Sailors and divers to work in a task unit environment during integrated operations.

"The exercise proved to be a valuable integrated training opportunity for both the United States Navy and Royal Canadian Navy," said Cmdr. Shawn E. Johnson, MCMRON Three training officer. "It improved overall combat readiness and MCM force performance and effectiveness."
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