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An Italian NH 90 helicopter assigned to the Italian Navy frigate ITS Federico Martinengo (F 596) flies over participants in the French-led exercise Grand African NEMO in the Gulf of Guinea, Oct. 8, 2020.

USNS Burlington (T-EPF-10) departed its hub port in Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek

Ship in the Spotlight

Ship In the Spotlight
This week help us recognize the crew of dry cargo/ammunition ship USNS Washington Chambers (T-AKE 11) who recently conducted back-to-back underway replenishments for U.S. Navy ships serving in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations.

In mid-September, Chambers' crew was able to successfully conduct three underway replenishments in a day – with USS America (LHA 6), USS Germantown (LSD 42) and USS New Orleans (LPD 18).

The ships, part of America Amphibious Ready Group, assigned to Amphibious Squadron 11, along with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, were operating in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility to enhance interoperability with allies and partners and serve as a ready response force to defend peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.

Just a couple weeks after the evolutions, Chamber's crew also conducted an underway replenishment with USS John S. McCain (DDG 56), assigned to Destroyer Squadron Fifteen (DESRON 15), the Navy's largest forward-deployed DESRON and the U.S. 7th Fleet's principal surface force.

Blast From the Past

Blast From the Past
Named for Mission San Fernando Rey de España in Los Angeles, California, the SS Mission San Fernando was a tanker built for the United States Maritime Commission during World War II. After the war, the ship was acquired by the U.S. Navy and named USS Mission San Fernando (AO-122).

On Sept. 28, 1964, USNS Mission San Fernando began conversion to a missile-range instrumentation ship by General Dynamics for extensive modernization and rebuilding in Quincy, Massachusetts. While under conversion the ship was renamed and reclassified USNS Muscle Shoals (T-AGM 19).

On Sept. 1, 1965, Muscle Shoals was renamed USNS Vanguard (T-AGM 19) where it would go on to participate in the Apollo Project, the Skylab program and the joint U.S./Soviet Apollo Soyuz Test Project.

(Pictured: USNS Vanguard (T-AGM 19) seen here as a NASA Sky Lab tracking ship)
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