NewsBytes 2006


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December 31st 2006: Chinese Nimitz  see Picture A 3/4 model stuck in a lake near Shangai, thanks to Strategy Page. Have a look also at the ex Russian carrier Varyag tied up at Dalian Harbour in North China.

December 12th 2006: Eisenhower on Station USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER, At Sea (NNS) -- The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69), flagship of the Eisenhower Carrier Strike Group (IKE CSG), entered the Persian Gulf Dec. 11, accompanied by the guided-missile cruiser USS Anzio (CG 68).

CVW-7 began flying missions into Afghanistan Nov. 6 in support of coalition troops on the ground participating in Operation Enduring Freedom. During 33 days of operations, the air wing flew more than 4,000 hours and more than 680 sorties, providing close air support and reconnaissance to International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) troops.

CVW-7 includes Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 125 “Tigertails,” Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 103 “Jolly Rogers,” VFA 131 “Wildcats,” VFA 143 “Pukin’ Dogs,” VFA 83 “Rampagers,” Electronic Attack (VAQ) Squadron 140 “Patriots,” and Helicopter Anti-submarine (HS) 5 “Nightdippers.”

IKE CSG includes Dwight D. Eisenhower, with its embarked air wing, CVW-7, and embarked Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 28; the guided-missile cruiser Anzio; guided-missile destroyers USS Ramage (DDG 61) and USS Mason (DDG 87); and the fast attack submarine USS Newport News (SSN 750). All are homeported in Norfolk, Va.

October 7th 2006: George H. W. Bush Christened At Newport News
NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (NNS) -- The nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS George H. W. Bush (CVN 77) was officially christened Oct. 7 at Northrop Grumman Newport News ship yard with its namesake and 41st president in attendance.

September 26th 2006:
Navy Strike Group Contributing to Iraq, Afghanistan Security. During June and July, Enterprise aircraft launched 781 aircraft sorties in direct support of troops participating in Operation Iraqi Freedom and 237 aircraft sorties in support of Operation Enduring Freedom, Spicer said. Since the end of August, Enterprise has launched nearly 300 aircraft sorties and expended about 90 precision weapons in support of NATO forces and other coalition troops in Afghanistan, he said. Enterprise aircraft also continue to support Operation Iraqi Freedom from an air base in Iraq

On Sept. 12, Enterprise-based aircraft performed strafing runs against both Taliban extremists preparing for operations against ISAF forces and a building suspected of housing Taliban extremists. The ship’s aircraft also expended Guided Bomb Unit (GBU) 12 bombs against a Taliban fortification near Kandahar. The GBU-12 is a general-purpose, laser-guided 500-pound bomb.

Enterprise is the flagship in the Enterprise Carrier Strike Group, which includes the cruiser USS Leyte Gulf (CG 55), destroyer USS McFaul (DDG 74), frigate USS Nicholas (FFG 47), all based in Norfolk, the attack submarine USS Alexandria (SSN 757), homeported in Groton, Conn., and the fast-combat supply ship USNS Supply (T-AOE-6), homeported in Earle, N.J.


July 30th 2006: By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class (SW/AW) Joaquin Juatai, USS Abraham Lincoln Public Affairs
USS ABRAHAM LINCOLN, At Sea (NNS) -- USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) departed Naval Station Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, July 29, after the final weekend of the biennial Rim of the Pacific 2006 (RIMPAC) exercise.

More than 1,000 guests, including Sailors from Australia, Canada, Chile, Japan, Peru, the Republic of Korea, and the United Kingdom joined U.S. Navy personnel for a final pierside reception aboard the carrier July 28.

Final launch of the Tomcat USS Roosevelt July 28 2006

July 30th 2006: 
By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Carla Morton, USS Dwight D. Eisenhower Public Affairs
ABOARD USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER (NNS) -- The USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) Carrier Strike Group (CSG) completed an eight-day Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFEX) 06-2 “Operation Bold Step,” July 28, off the East Coast, testing the CSG’s ability to operate alongside other U.S. forces and coalition partners in a complex, hostile environment.

 The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier and embarked Commander, Carrier Strike Group 8, Commander, Destroyer Squadron (CDS) 28 and Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 7 got underway from Naval Station Norfolk July 18, and after several days of conducting carrier qualifications for the air wing’s pilots, joined with other forces and commenced the exercise.

July 29th 2006: By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (SW) Mark A. Catalano, USS Theodore Roosevelt Public Affairs
ABOARD USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT (NNS) -- A long, storied chapter in naval aviation history came to a close July 28 with the final aircraft carrier flight operations for F-14 Tomcats, fighter jets that have spent more than 32 years in the fleet but are now retiring and making room for F/A-18E/F Super Hornets.

The final aircraft carrier operational launch for Tomcats happened aboard the Norfolk-based Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) when aircraft No. 112 from the “Tomcatters” of Fighter Squadron (VF) 31, piloted by Lt. Blake Coleman and Radar Intercept Officer Lt. Cmdr. Dave Lauderbaugh, made its way down catapult No. 3 at 4:42 p.m.

April 21st 2006: The Last Tomcat  NAVAL AIR STATION PENSACOLA, Fla. (NNS) -- The last F-14 Tomcat to fly a combat mission over Iraq made its final flight from USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) to Naval Air Station Pensacola April 13. 

The Tomcat will be immortalized at the National Museum of Naval Aviation here as the final decommissioning stages close and training for its replacement, the F/A-18E/F Super Hornet, continue.
The F-14D, aircraft bureau number 161159, was assigned to the "Black Lions" of Fighter Squadron (VF) 213 as part of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 8, embarked aboard Roosevelt to provide close air support to Marines and Soldiers in Iraq, according to Stufflebeem

April 17th 2006: Oriskany  Pensacola, Fla.  - Decommissioned aircraft carrier USS Oriskany (CVA 34) sits in port at Naval Air Station (NAS) Pensacola, while undergoing necessary maintenance. Known as the "Big O," the 32,000-ton, 888-foot Oriskany is being delivered to Pensacola, where it is being prepared for its final journey. Oriskany is schedule to be scuttled 22 miles south of Pensacola in approximately 212 feet of water in the Gulf of Mexico May 17, 2006, where it will become the largest ship ever intentionally sunk as an artificial reef. After the Oriskany reaches the bottom, ownership of the vessel will transfer from the Navy to the State of Florida.

February 28th: USS  RONALD REAGAN, At Sea (NNS) -- Vice Adm. Patrick M. Walsh, commander,, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/commander, U.S. 5th Fleet (COMUSNAVCENT/5th Fleet), commander, Combined Maritime Forces visited USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) Feb. 27 to welcome the ship’s crew, air wing and embarked carrier strike group staff to the 5th Fleet area of operations (AOO).