Nearly 4,500 Sailors and Marines on the three ships of the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group are scheduled to return to San Diego Wednesday morning following a seven-month deployment that included fighting the Islamic State.
The amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island, dock landing ship USS Comstock and amphibious transport dock ship USS San Diego have been deployed since July 25. Since then they evacuated scientists from remote islands as Tropical Storm Iselle neared Hawaii, conducted air strikes against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, and trained with British, Kuwaiti and Saudi Arabian forces.
“We’ve had a very intense deployment that required us to execute multiple mission sets simultaneously for long periods of time. The superb professionalism and work ethic of all members of the ARG/MEU team ensured we met and exceeded the mark every time,” said Capt. Steve McKone, commander of Amphibious Squadron 5. “I know these Sailors and Marines are excited to be home.”
During the deployment, the group steamed nearly 35,000 nautical miles, flew approximately 3,100 sorties, and logged nearly 5,020 flight hours. Amphibious craft completed more than 4,000 passenger transfers and moved more than 90,000 tons of equipment to and from the shore.
This deployment was the first for San Diego and the second for Makin Island.
The ready group conducted port visits in Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Oman and Jordan. It was succeeded by the Iwo Jimy ready group in January.
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