PACIFIC OCEAN (Nov. 19, 2016) Four F-35B Lightning II aircraft perform a flyover above the amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) during the Lightning Carrier Proof of Concept Demonstration. The F-35B will eventually replace three Marine Corps aircraft; the AV-8B Harrier, F/A-18 Hornet and the EA-6B Prowler. (U.S. Navy photo by Andy Wolfe/Released)
USS America Wins Battle E

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) was selected for her first Battle Effectiveness Award (Battle "E") in the ship's first year of eligibility, March 14.

"I am very proud of the crew," said Capt. Joe Olson, America's commanding officer. "They have worked extremely hard this year and have done it all while completing a vigorous schedule. This award is a testament to the crew's hard work and dedication.

Every year, the Battle 'E' is given to the ships, submarines, and other Navy units which demonstrate a superior standard of performance during a yearlong evaluation cycle which assesses the readiness of the command to carry out the required mission.

For America, receiving the award was a testament of the hard work the crew has put in while preparing for the ship's maiden deployment later this summer.

"From the first RIMPAC to the first [F-35 Lightning II] Joint Strike Fighter testing, America has performed brilliantly," said Olson. "This award is not about the triad, but about the Sailors on the deckplates making it happen. I couldn't be more proud of what they've accomplished."

During the evaluation cycle, America was graded on areas such as ship safety, maritime warfare, engineering and survivability, logistics management, maintenance protocol, and command, control, communications and information warfare.

"It's been inspection after inspection of all our programs, systems, equipment, and personnel," said Lt. Cmdr. Lyle Hoskin, America's Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Combat and Intelligence (C5I) department head. "Some members of this crew have been here since before it was a ship, and to see how far its come is a reward within itself."

Vice Adm. Thomas Rowden, commander, Naval Surface Forces and commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, expressed his gratitude in a message to all Pacific Fleet recipients of the Battle 'E.'

"Congratulations to all award winners," he wrote. "Your success in meeting mission area excellence standards is noted with pleasure."

America is currently underway in the Pacific Ocean conducting a mid-cycle inspection in preparation for the ship's maiden deployment later this year.

For more information, visit http://www.navy.mil, http://www.facebook.com/usnavy, or http://www.twitter.com/usnavy.

For more news from USS America (LHA 6), visit http://www.navy.mil/local/lha6/.

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