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USS Monterey (CG 61)

- decommissioned -

USS MONTEREY was the 15th TICONDEROGA - class guided missile cruiser and the fourth ship in the Navy to bear the name. MONTEREY held a decommissioning ceremony at her homeport of Norfolk, Va., on September 16, 2022, and was officially decommissioned on September 30, 2022.

General Characteristics:Awarded: November 26, 1984
Keel laid: August 19, 1987
Launched: October 23, 1988
Commissioned: June 16, 1990
Decommissioned: September 30, 2022
Builder: Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine
Propulsion system: four General Electric LM 2500 gas turbine engines
Propellers: two
Blades on each Propeller: five
Length: 567 feet (173 meters)
Beam: 55 feet (16.8 meters)
Draft: 34 feet (10.2 meters)
Displacement: approx. 9,600 tons full load
Speed: 30+ knots
Cost: about $1 billion
Aircraft: two SH-60 Sea Hawk (LAMPS 3)
Armament: two Mk 41 VLS for Standard missiles, Tomahawk, ASROC; Mk 46 torpedoes, Harpoon missile launchers, two Mk 45 5-inch/54 caliber lightweight guns, two Phalanx CIWS, two Mk 38 Mod 2 25mm machine gun systems
Crew: 33 Officers, 27 Chief Petty Officers and approx. 340 Enlisted

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Crew List:

This section contains the names of sailors who served aboard USS MONTEREY. It is no official listing but contains the names of sailors who submitted their information.

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USS MONTEREY Cruise Books:

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About the Ship’s Coat of Arms:

The Shield:

The shield's central shield represents AEGIS. the impenetrable defensive shield of the greek god "Zeus." Over this appears the Surface Warfare Logo, symbolizing the three dimensional (Air, Surface, and Subsurface) threat. The AEGIS elongated octagon covers this symbol. This octagon is familiar to all who view the modern warship's sophisticated radar array. Centered on the octagon, a dark blue anchor characterizing seapower, strength, and Navy tradition. The gold star depicts battle stars earned by the aircraft carrier previously named MONTEREY.

The Crest:

On the ship's crest is pictured General Zachary Taylor in his typical battle pose, leg slung over the saddle atop his famous white stallion "Old Whitie," before the heavily defended Independence Hill, the turning point in the Battle of Monterey. In the background, Black Fort, another massive stone work protecting the city.

The Motto:

The motto is "ROUGH IN BATTLE AND READY IN PEACE" comes from the nickname of Zachary Taylor "Old Rough and Ready," which he earned in battle against the Seminoles in Florida, and later used as a campaign slogan for his election to the office of President of the United States.

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Accidents aboard USS MONTEREY:

February 24, 2003off eastern FloridaSeaman Apprentice Christian Nicolas Earlie, from Corona, N.Y., apparently jumped overboard around 5 p.m. according to eyewitnesses. The ship was conducting routine training exercises off Florida's eastern shore.

Search-and-rescue (SAR) missions were conducted after, utilizing the ship's small boats with three SAR swimmers, a Coast Guard C-130 Hercules and a HH-60 Seahawk helicopter. The search did not turn up anything.
March 17, 2005Persian Gulf
USS MONTEREY and the USNS SPICA (T-AFS 9) collide while conducting underway replenishment operations in the Persian Gulf. There are no casualties or injuries reported as a result of the collision.

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History of USS MONTEREY:

USS MONTEREY was built at Bath Iron Works, launched on October 23, 1988, conducted her first sea trials in November 1989, and was commissioned in Mayport, Florida, on June 16, 1990.

In July 1990, MONTEREY underwent Combat Systems Qualifications Trials in the Puerto Rican Operating Areas, firing thirteen Standard Missiles as a demonstration of the operability and accuracy of her weapons systems. During this period, MONTEREY's Anti Submarine Warfare suite was exercised while operating with USS MIAMI (SSN 755), the Navy's newest Aegis cruiser versus the Navy's newest "improved" LOS ANGELES class submarine. Weapons Systems testing was followed by MONTEREY's first Naval Gunfire Support Qualification and her first port visit, St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands.

In August MONTEREY performed rigorous testing of her ASW suite at the AUTEC range in the Tongue of the Ocean, off Andros Island, Bahamas, working with USS BERGALL (SSN 667). Testing included firing 4 Mk-46 torpedoes over the side and helicopter supported operations involving Helicopter Squadrons 46 and 48. In September MONTEREY went to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba for Limited Team Training, primarily exercising at Damage Control, Shiphandling/Navigation, and Engineering evolutions. MONTEREY passed material closure condition checks on the first attempt and successfully completed almost all selected readiness exercises for the competitive cycle. MONTEREY successfully passed Operational Propulsion Plant Examination in October and was placed on a normal cycle for further Propulsion Examining Board inspections. In November MONTEREY very successfully completed Final Contract Trials by the Board of Inspection and Survey. Pre-Post-Shakedown Availability industrial work commenced in November and was completed in mid-December in Mayport, Florida. 1990 ended with MONTEREY preparing for her return to Maine for Heavy Weather/Hull Modification Stress Trials and Post-Shakedown Availability.

MONTEREY got underway for PSA on January 7, 1991, arriving in Portland on January 10. Before beginning PSA, the ship became the first AEGIS cruiser to undergo heavy weather trials. Naval Sea Systems Command engineers came onboard and placed strain gauges and data recording devices at various locations around the ship. MONTEREY then got underway for the Gulf of Maine in search of high seas in order to record the ship's structural response for future study. MONTEREY's first foreign port call came at the end of heavy weather trials with a visit to Halifax, Canada. The ship returned to Portland and commenced PSA on January 23. Over the next four months in the shipyard modifications, upgrades, and repairs were made to the ship's structure, equipment, and combat systems.

PSA was completed on April 26 and MONTEREY departed for her homeport of Mayport, Florida. Enroute to Mayport, the ship stopped at Yorktown Naval Weapons Station and onloaded weapons.

In July, MONTEREY got underway for the Caribbean to participate in Type Commander Core Training 1-91 (TCCT 1-91). During this exercise MONTEREY underwent rigorous training in all warfare areas. Highlights included firing two SM-2MR missiles, four MK-46 torpedoes, and Naval Gunfire Support (NGFS). Upon completion of TCCT 1-91 weapons were once again loaded in Yorktown, Virginia. In September, USS MONTEREY joined up with the USS AMERICA (CV 66) CVBG for Combat Enhancement Training (CET). This lasted from September 01-09 and was designed to prepare the battlegroup as a team for participation in NORTHSTAR 91, FLEETEX 1/91, and the MED 1-92 deployment. During this time MONTEREY continued her transit Northeast towards the coast of Norway where NORTHSTAR 91 would take place. NORTHSTAR began on September 10. Over 50 ships and 200 aircraft from eight nations trained to become an effective multi-national maritime force in a realistic at sea environment. Upon completion of NORTHSTAR, MONTEREY made a port call to Cork, Ireland.

MONTEREY departed Ireland and rendezvoused with the other ships of the AMERICA CVBG in preparation for FLEETEX 1/91 which began on October 01. FLEETEX 1/91 was the AMERICA CVBG's final readiness exam prior to the Med 1-92 deployment. The USS EISENHOWER (CVN 69) CVBG, transiting the Atlantic on the way to the Indian Ocean deployment, simulated an opposing force. Additional aircraft from the continental United States also participated, simulating enemy land based aircraft. MONTEREY arrived back in Mayport on October 11.

MONTEREY left Mayport for her maiden deployment on December 2. After the Atlantic transit, she made a port visit to Marseille, France, December 16-18, followed by another visit to Barcelona, Spain, on December 23. MONTEREY concluded her Holiday port visit to Barcelona on January 4, 1992. With COMDESRON FOURTEEN embarked, she commenced a rapid-fire succession of US Navy and Joint/NATO exercises designed to test her in all warfare areas and NATO interoperability. These exercises included a Maritime Action Group ENCOUNTEREX with the USS AMERICA Carrier Battle Group, a SEAL Team interoperability exercise, an anti-submarine/anti-surface warfare exercise, and a Combined Air Defense Exercise. Included in this grueling schedule was a liberty port visit to Haifa, Israel.

February began with an all warfare area exercise with the Italian Navy. At the conclusion of the exercise, the MONTEREY commenced an IMAV with the USS SIERRA (AD 18) in Naples, Italy. After debarking COMDESRON FOURTEEN, MONTEREY got underway for a visit to Cagliari, Sicily. MONTEREY then got underway for an anti-submarine warfare exercise with the Italian Navy. At the conclusion of this exercise, she made a goodwill visit to Thessaloniki, Greece, where the crew entertained the US Ambassador and Greek officials.

On 27 February, MONTEREY began a historic transit to Varna, Bulgaria. On February 29, she became the third US Navy warship to ever visit Bulgaria. VADM E.J. Clexton, Deputy CINCUSNAVEUR, arrived via embarked HSL-46 DET 9 SH-60B Helo prior to entering port in the first US Navy helo operation in Bulgarian airspace. Five thousand Bulgarians toured the ship including the Minister of Defense, Naval Chief of Staff, and many other senior Bulgarian military and civilian officials. The port visit ended with at sea maneuvering drills with the Bulgarian Navy as MONTEREY departed for Eregli, Turkey, on March 5.

A brief visit was made to Eregli, Turkey. On March 9, MONTEREY departed for Constanta, Romania. Approximately five thousand people toured the ship including the Romanian Naval chief of Staff and many other senior military and civilian officials. March continued with exercise Distant Thunder 92, an all warfare area exercise with participants from Spain, the United Kingdom, and Turkey. Following the exercise, MONTEREY commenced a Restricted Maintenance Availability in Haifa, Israel. On March 29, VADM W.A. Owens, COMSIXTHFLT, embarked aboard MONTEREY with a Joint Task Force of Army, Navy, and Air Force officers for exercise Juniper Falconry 11. Following the exercise, MONTEREY participated in an ENCOUNTEREX with the French carrier FOCH. On April 18, MONTEREY arrived in Trieste, Italy, as the first US Navy ship to operate in the Adriatic Sea in over a year.

After a brief visit to Tunisia, MONTEREY participated in a PASSEX with the Tunisian Navy. Following the exercise, MONTEREY transited to Augusta Bay, Italy, for exercise Dragon Hammer before starting the long awaited transit home. After embarking guests in Bermuda for the Tiger Cruise, MONTEREY continued home. On June 1, 1992, MONTEREY arrived in Mayport, Florida after her six month maiden deployment.

In July MONTEREY transited to Yorktown, Virginia, for an ammunition offload in preparation for the upcoming Selected Restrictive Availability. At the end of the offload, a Dependents' Cruise was held off of Mayport, Florida. In August and September MONTEREY underwent her Selected Restrictive Availability.

During April 1993, MONTEREY completed an Intermediate Maintenance Availability. From April 24-26, MONTEREY participated in ASW Proficiency Training as a part of COMPTUEX, the first major exercise for the USS AMERICA JTG in preparation for MED 3-93. COMPTUEX lasted from April 21 to May 14 and tested the USS AMERICA Joint Task Group in coordinated warfare operations.

On August 11, 1993, MONTEREY departed for a six month deployment to the Mediterranean Sea with HSL-46 DET 9 embarked as part of the USS AMERICA JTG. From August 27-30, MONTEREY conducted a port visit in Palma de Mallorca, Spain. From August 30-31, MONTEREY sailed for Bizerte, Tunisia, where she conducted a training anchorage from August 31 to September 2 in preparation for the annual Tunisian PASSEX with the Tunisian Navy. From September 02-04, MONTEREY conducted various seamanship and warfare exercises with the Tunisian Navy. At the completion of the exercise, MONTEREY departed for the Adriatic Sea.

September was the first time that MONTEREY served as the Adriatic Cruiser in support of United Nation's Resolutions in Operations Sharp Guard, Deny Flight, and Provide Promise. After a stint as the Adriatic Cruiser from September 06-13 September, MONTEREY departed for Izmir, Turkey. After a training anchorage in Izmir from September 16-22, MONTEREY sortied for Exercise Dynamic Guard which was hosted by the Turkish Navy. From September 22 to October 04, MONTEREY participated in Amphibious, Anti-Air, AntiSurface, Anti-Subsurface, and Mine warfare events. MONTEREY also served as the Eagle Control ship for the entire exercise, monitoring the airspace above the Aegean Sea for possible territorial airspace violations.

Upon completion of Dynamic Guard, MONTEREY departed for the Adriatic Sea for carrier escort duty with USS AMERICA from October 06-13. While operating in the Adriatic, MONTEREY also participated in numerous Anti-Submarine Warfare exercises with various NATO/WEU ships and aircraft also operating in support of United Nation's Resolutions. After detaching from AMERICA, MONTEREY conducted a brief stop in Augusta Bay while enroute to Haifa, Israel, where MONTEREY conducted a port visit from October 17-28.

From October 30 to November 05, MONTEREY participated in SHAREM 106 in the Adriatic Sea. Upon completion of the exercise, MONTEREY departed for Volos, Greece, where she conducted a training anchorage from November 07-08 in preparation for Exercise Niriis. MONTEREY served as the Support Operations Coordinating Authority with the USS ALEXANDRIA (SSN 757) during Niriis. Upon completion of the exercise, MONTEREY departed for the Adriatic Sea again.

In the Adriatic, MONTEREY operated with NATO/WEU forces in support of United Nation's Resolutions. After serving as the Adriatic Cruiser from November 15-20, MONTEREY departed for Civitavecchia, Italy, the port city for Rome. While in Civitavecchia, MONTEREY's crew enjoyed the Thanksgiving holiday and a welcome break from the high tempo of operations of the past three months. From December 01-16, MONTEREY again served as the Adriatic Cruiser. After completing her duties, MONTEREY departed for Toulon, France, where she arrived on December 20 and remained there throughout the Christmas and New Years holidays. While inport, the ship underwent voyage repairs. After finishing the port visit in Toulon, France, the ship embarked Captain Hunter, COMDESRON FOURTEEN, who remained onboard until return to Mayport.

MONTEREY assumed duties as Plane Guard for USS AMERICA and headed for the Adriatic Sea. Once there, she continued her duties as Carrier Escort in Support of Operations Deny Flight and Provide Promise from January 7-13. Additionally, MONTEREY participated in Exercises Nemean Lion and MARCOMMEX FOXTROT. After leaving the Adriatic for the last time, the ship headed west with AMERICA towards station off the coast of Spain and began exercise PoopDeck '94, an extensive exercise which included a series of air control exercises, maritime war-at-sea strikes from the Spanish Air Force, and SEAL Combat Search and Rescue exercises. During the exercise, MONTEREY also participated in additional ASW exercises against the USS GROTON (SSN 694). Only extremely rough weather hampered the success of these exercises. After completion of PoopDeck '94, both MONTEREY and AMERICA headed towards their last deployment port visit - a joint one in Malaga, Spain.

After leaving Malaga on January 26, 1994, the AMERICA Battle Group turned over the duties as Battle Force, Sixth Fleet with the USS SARATOGA (CV 60) Battle Group. USS MONTEREY arrived home at Mayport on February 5.

On the May 31, 1994, MONTEREY departed Mayport for duty as a member of the UN Task Force in Operation Support Democracy off the coast of Haiti from June 3-25. While participating in the group which enforced the UN sanctions and maritime embargo of Haiti, MONTEREY's boarding team completed almost twenty boardings and searches of merchant vessels attempting to enter or exit Haiti. After three weeks of Operation Support Democracy, MONTEREY turned over her duties and transferred DESRON 20 to USS SPRUANCE (DD 963). The ship then departed the Haitian operating area enroute a port visit in Curacao, Netherlands Antilles, arriving there on June 27.

After completion of the visit, MONTEREY headed towards her Counter-Drug Operations Station in the Gulf of Honduras as a member of Joint Task Force-4. She remained on station for two weeks before turning over duties with sistership HUE CITY (CG 66) and returning home to Mayport.

Following a Selective Restrictive Availability in her homeport, USS MONTEREY began Refresher Training in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, in January 1995. After a port visit to Roosevelt Roads, Puerto Rico, MONTEREY started her homebound transit on January 24.

In late February, MONTEREY participated in Mardi Gras in Mobile, Al. The ship was open for tours and over 4000 people visited in a five day period.

After a series of inspections and qualifications, MONTEREY joined COMPTUEX 95-3 on April 24 when she rendezvoused with other battle group units to conduct the event in the Puerto Rico Operating Area. COMPTUEX included successful SM-2 firings against air and surface targets. During COMPTUEX, MONTEREY enjoyed a port visit in San Juan, Puerto Rico, during which over 2000 visitors toured the ship. MONTEREY returned to Mayport on May 24. On May 30 the ship was underway for its predeployment weapons onload in Charleston, SC, returning to Mayport on June 3.

USS MONTEREY participated in JTFEX 95-3 July 6-24. The return to Mayport on July 24 marked the beginning of MONTEREY's pre-operational movement (POM) period. Hurricane Erin forced an emergency sortie of all ships from the Mayport basin from August 01-03 during the first POM leave period. And while Captain Williams was in Norfolk for a Battle Group Commanders Conference, the ship sortied successfully with only sixty percent of its crew onboard.

USS MONTEREY departed her homeport of Mayport, FL, on August 25, 1995, to relieve USS MISSISSIPPI (CGN 40) in the Adriatic Sea as the U.S. cruiser responsible for air surveillance off the coast of Bosnia. Once in the Adriatic, MONTEREY assumed the duties of Redcrown, where it was responsible for all air surveillance and aircraft control in the Adriatic Sea in direct support of NATO operations Deny Flight and Sharp Guard. During the six-month deployment, MONTEREY also had roles in operations Provide Promise, Southern Watch, Decisive Edge, and Decisive Endeavor in the Mediterranean and Adriatic Seas and the Arabian Gulf. MONTEREY also participated in Exercise Infinite Courage, and the multinational exercises Bright Star and Final Courage.

While en route to a post-exercise port visit, MONTEREY responded to a distress call from an Austrian sailing vessel; one of whose crew members had suffered a severe head injury that required immediate medical attention. MONTEREY's next mission was to escort USS AMERICA to the Arabian Gulf in support of Operation Southern Watch and enforcement of U.N. sanctions against Iraq. Shortly thereafter, AMERICA and MONTEREY were recalled back to the Adriatic Sea to support Operation Joint Endeavor and NATO troop insertions into Bosnia-Herzegovina as the Dayton Peace Accords went into effect.

During the transit, MONTEREY answered another distress call by a U.S. sailing vessel, which was being fired upon by Eritrea and Yemen forces during their conflict over disputed islands in the Red Sea. MONTEREY also joined forces with a the Russian RNS ADMIRAL KUZNETSOV (CV 063) battle group for two days of exercises January 21-22, 1996. The ship made port calls at Trieste, Ancona and Naples, Italy; Corfu, Souda Bay, Crete, Greece; and Antalya, Turkey, before returning home on February 24, 1996.

USS MONTEREY arrived at her new home port of Norfolk on May 10, 1996, as part of the Atlantic Fleet's reorganization of its forces. The guided missile cruiser then began an 11-month maintenance overhaul on June 19 at Newport News Shipbuilding and Drydock Inc. in Newport News, VA.

USS MONTEREY took part from January 12 through February 4, 1998, in Joint Task Force Exercise 98-1 as part of the USS JOHN C. STENNIS (CVN 74) Carrier Battle Group (CVBG). This exercise, which included participation by more than 30,000 service members from all branches of the armed forces, was designed to meet the requirements for quality, realistic, intensive training to fully prepare US forces for joint operations. The JOHN C. STENNIS CVBG and WASP (LHD 1) ARG were to depart for a scheduled six-month deployment the following month, and the JTFEX was to serve as the final certification on their readiness to deploy. This was to be the first deployment for JOHN C. STENNIS.

MONTEREY and the other battle group ships left their Eastcoast homeports on February 26, 1998, and headed towards the Mediterranean and later the Persian Gulf. MONTEREY returned to Norfolk in August.

USS MONTEREY's next deployment was as part of the JOHN F. KENNEDY (CV 67) Battle Group to the Arabian Gulf. This cruise lastet from September 1999 till March 2000.

In 2001, USS MONTEREY served as the US Flagship for US Navy units participating in the Atlantic phase of the UNITAS 2001, which was hosted by the Uruguayan Navy. UNITAS 2001 focused on high-tech surface, air and under-sea naval training exercises designed to train the force in multinational coalition operations, improve force interoperability and demonstrate hemispheric defense. The exercises were based on realistic world scenarios requiring the participating ships to operate as a combined multi-national task force.

As part of the USS GEORGE WASHINGTON (CVN 73) Carrier Battle Group (CVBG), and in response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, USS MONTEREY set sail in support of defense and humanitarian efforts off the coast of New York directly after the attacks.

USS MONTEREY began the year 2002 in port Naval Station Norfolk during Christmas Holiday leave and stand-down. In the second month of the year, her Officers and Crew completed a five-day underway for training in preparation for the upcoming COMPTUEX/JTFEX, a Battlegroup Group Sail with all units from the GEORGE WASHINGTON Battlegroup, and completed pre-deployment weapons on load. After nearly a month in port, MONTEREY got underway for a Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX) and embarked Detachment One of Helicopter Anti-Submarine Light Forty Two, based in Mayport, Florida. COMPTUEX included several Underway Replenishments with USNS SUPPLY (T-AOE 6) and coordinated ASW, Strike, Gunnery, and AAW exercises. MONTEREY successfully engaged two supersonic VANDAL targets with two SM-2 missiles. COMPTUEX concluded with a short port visit to Naval Station Roosevelt Roads, Puerto Rico, before getting underway for Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFEX).

Upon completion of JTFEX, MONTEREY returned to homeport for Pre-Overseas Movement (POM) leave and stand-down. On June 20, USS MONTEREY deployed with USS GEORGE WASHINGTON. After a ten-day trans-Atlantic Ocean voyage, the GEORGE WASHINGTON Battlegroup transited through the Strait of Gibralter and changed operational control (CHOP) to Commander, Sixth Fleet. Before transiting the Suez Canal and "chopping" to Fifth Fleet, the Officers and Crew of USS MONTEREY enjoyed liberty in three Mediterranean ports including La Maddalena and La Spezia, Italy, and Aksas (Marmaris), Turkey.

After transiting through the Suez Canal, Red Sea, Strait of Bab el Mandeb, and Strait of Hormuz, MONTEREY made a short port call to Manama, Bahrain, for an in-brief on Fifth Fleet Operations. Once on station in the Northern Arabian Gulf, MONTEREY embarked the Coalition Maritime Interdiction Operations Commander. During her seven-week stay in the Northern Arabian Gulf, MONTEREY worked with coalition ships from the United Kingdom, Australia, and Norway and conducted 131 boardings, including 32 in a single day. After being relieved by the USS MOBILE BAY (CG 53), MONTEREY headed East, through the Strait of Hormuz and South to the Seychelles Islands for a port visit before transiting North through the Red Sea and "chopping" to Sixth Fleet.

While on MI0 Patrol in the Eastern Mediterranean, MONTEREY conducted one Leadership Interdiction Operation boarding on motor vessel TARA. Additionally, MONTEREY participated in a joint forces MI0 exercise (Purple Flex) and Dogu Akdinez, a NATO Naval exercise hosted by the Turkish Navy. Port visits to Aksas and Izmir, Turkey; Souda Bay, Crete; Valetta, Malta; and Cartagena, Spain, were made before passing West through the Strait of Gibraltar and returning to Norfolk on December 20, 2002, for some much needed leave and stand-down.

In February 2003, MONTEREY visited Mobile, Al., for Mardi Gras. March brought the ship's return to Norfolk, and a brief stay at Naval Weapons Station Yorktown for a complete ammunition offload in preparation for the shipyard and dry dock period. From March 04 to July 14, MONTEREY was in Metro Machine Shipyard, and most of that time was spent in the SPEEDE drydock. MONTEREY was the first vessel to be lifted from the water in this state of the art dry-dock facility. The multi-million dollar maintenance and repair contract included a stern flap modification, hull painting, repairs to the rudders and shafts, and much needed maintenance to dozens of pieces of machinery.

On October 13, 2004, MONTEREY departed Norfolk on another deployment to the Mediterranean and Arabian Gulf. This time she was operating as part of the USS HARRY S. TRUMAN (CVN 75) Battle Group and participated in Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. MONTEREY returned home to Norfolk on April 19, 2005.

On June 08, MONTEREY arrived at Marine Hydraulic International to commence a Selected Restricted Availability period, in which the ship received upgrades to its combat systems suites and fire control systems, as well as upgrades to the Smart Ship technology. On August 08, MONTEREY departed the shipyard and headed immediately to the VACAPES OPAREA for a post availability shake down cruise as well as to conduct more exercises in support of the training cycle. On August 16, MONTEREY returned once again to Naval Weapons Station Yorktown to receive her self-defense onload of SM-2 missiles, 5-inch shells, and small caliber weapons. From September to December, the ship spent a great deal of time going back and forth from Norfolk to the VACAPES OPAREA in support of a series of assist visits, final evaluations and inspections.

MONTEREY was back at sea on February 10 for the CCSG-10 Group Sail in preparation for the upcoming Partnership of Americas Operation, which would be held in the Caribbean Sea in April. Along with MONTEREY, other units taking part were USS GEORGE WASHINGTON, USS STOUT (DDG 55) and USS UNDERWOOD (FFG 36). The group sail was successfully completed, and MONTEREY returned to Norfolk on February 16.

On April 3, MONTEREY departed Naval Station Norfolk with USS GEORGE WASHINGTON and USS STOUT for the transit to the Caribbean Sea, where the ships would commence the Partnership of Americas Operation. Along the way, the ships were joined by the USS UNDERWOOD, out of Naval Station Mayport, Florida. Also during the transit, MONTEREY embarked her SH-60B Helicopter along with the officers and crew from Helicopter Anti-Submarine (Light) Four Six Detachment One. Additionally, the United States Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment 406 was embarked. The rest of the transit to the Caribbean Sea was used to conduct Week One Work Ups with the Helicopter detachment.

Once in the Caribbean Sea, the Partnership of Americas Operation commenced. One of the goals of the Operation was to enhance relations with the Caribbean countries. As such, MONTEREY saw port visits in Aruba, St. Kitts, and Jamaica. During these port visits, MONTEREY hosted Heads of States, Ambassadors, Chiefs of Defense, and other prominent local dignitaries. While underway, MONTEREY conducted numerous Counter Narco-Terrorism patrols, provided maritime security, and also participated in a bilateral exercise with the Columbian Navy. The Operation wrapped up in late May.

After a brief rest, MONTEREY got back underway on June 07 for a transit across the Atlantic to Faslane, Scotland, to participate in the international exercise Neptune Warrior 062. Embarked on MONTEREY for the exercise was the staff of DESTROYER SQUADRON TWO FOUR commanded by Capt Robert Kapcio, as well as the officers and crew from HSL 46 Det 1. MONTEREY arrived in Faslane on June 15 and soon after, the exercise commenced. Over the course of the demanding two week exercise, MONTEREY participated in Anti-Submarine exercises, Air Defense exercises, Surface Warfare exercises, simulated Small Boat Attacks, Visit Board Search and Seizure operations, and various other evolutions.

Upon completion of Neptune Warrior 062, MONTEREY transited to Oslo, Norway, arriving on July 03. While there, MONTEREY hosted tours and a reception for several high ranking Norwegian dignitaries from both the Norwegian public offices and the Norwegian Dept of Defense. Upon completion of the port visit, the officers and crew had expected to return to Norfolk. However, MONTEREY was extended and given additional tasking: MONTEREY transited South to an area off of Rostock, Germany, to provide maritime security, air defense, and also serve as a security platform for the President of the United States while he visited the area prior to attending the G-8 summit in St. Petersburg, Russia. MONTEREY shifted gears and made the high speed transit to the OPAREA, arriving on July 11.

On July 14, 2006, the mission was completed, and MONTEREY was detached to proceed home. She completed the transit back to Norfolk, with a brief stop for fuel in Portsmouth, U.K. and arrived at Naval Station Norfolk on July 24.

On October 6, 2006, MONTEREY bid farewell to friends and family on the pier for the next 6 months, and set sail for the transit across the Atlantic to their first stop, Faslane, Scotland, where the ship would take part in Neptune Warrior 063. Transiting with MONTEREY were USS MAHAN (DDG 72) with the staff of DESTROYER SQUADRON TWO SIX embarked, USS MITSCHER (DDG 57), USS ROOSEVELT (DDG 80), USS HALYBURTON (FFG 40), and USS SAMUEL B. ROBERTS (FFG 58). Arriving in Faslane on October 19, MONTEREY relieved the USS ROSS (DDG 71) from their duties and responsibilities as Standing NATO Maritime Group Two Flagship and embarked the SNMG2 staff, commanded by Rear Admiral Michael Groothousen. Upon completion of the embark, MONTEREY set sail again for the Sea of the Hebrides, North, and South Minches for Neptune Warrior 063. The exercise started off much the same as the previous Neptune Warrior that MONTEREY had recently participated in, but this time MONTEREY was already a proven veteran of the demanding two week exercise. Upon the successful completion of Neptune Warrior 063, MONTEREY had expected to transit to the Mediterranean Sea with the rest of the SNMG2 ships. Instead MONTEREY learned that they had new tasking that would take them through the Baltic Sea and into the Gulf of Riga where the ship would play a major role in Operation Peaceful Summit, supporting the Latvian military by providing maritime security and air defense during the NATO summit to be held in Riga, Latvia.

MONTEREY departed Faslane and transited to Kiel, Germany. There, the officers and crew enjoyed the great liberty and also took the time to start planning for the operation with the United Kingdom counterpart HMS YORK (D 98). The ships departed Kiel on November 14 and arrived in Riga, Latvia on the 16th. Once in Riga, MONTEREY hosted tours and a reception for the Prime Minister of Latvia, the American Ambassador to Latvia, and the United Kingdom Prime Minister to Latvia.

Operation Peaceful Summit started on October 22. Upon the successful completion of the mission, MONTEREY returned to Riga for fuel and stores, getting back underway on December 1. MONTEREY transited through the Baltic and North Seas and arrived in Portsmouth, U.K., on December 4. The crew had expected to stay for no longer than 24 hours, but due to severe weather, the ship was held in Portsmouth until December 9, when there was enough of a hole in the weather to safely transit into the North Atlantic and then South towards the Straits of Gibraltar.

MONTEREY transited through the Straits of Gibraltar on December 12 and continued to Naples, Italy, arriving on December 14. Upon arrival, the SNMG2 staff dispersed for their Holiday Stand Down period, while MONTEREY remained in Naples in order to change out Number One Gas Turbine Generator, which had suffered a casualty earlier in the deployment. The ship remained in Naples for the rest of the year before participating in Operation Active Endeavor. MONTEREY returned to Norfolk in April 2007.

USS MONTEREY's next major deployment commenced on September 8, 2008, when she left Norfolk as part of the USS THEODORE ROOSEVELT (CVN 71) Strike Group. This cruise took MONTEREY to South Africa before heading for the Arabian Gulf in support of Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. The ship returned to Norfolk on April 18, 2009.

In August 2009, MONTEREY prepared for her upcoming shipyard availability at BAE Systems at Norfolk. She entered the shipyard on September 23. Many of MONTEREY's systems received hardware and software upgrades. These upgrades were part of the smart ship MOD and included Tactical Tomahawk Weapons Control System upgrade, Ballistic missile Defense upgrade and computer system COMPOSE hardware and software upgrade. The series of Ballistic Missile defense upgrades began with phase I installation training. June 9, 2010, officially ended the CNO availability period. Sea trials were conducted during the second week of June.

On January 20, 2011, after weapons load out at Yorktown Naval Weapons Depot, MONTEREY went to sea with USS GEORGE W. BUSH (CVN 77), USS ANZIO (CG 68), USS GETTYSBURG (CG 64) and USS MITSCHER for COMTUEX through February 10. She pulled into Key West Florida on the 11th of February for 3 days of liberty. MONTEREY left Key West on February 14 to commence JTFEX through the 23rd.

In early March, MONTEREY began her eight-month European Ballistic Missile defense deployment conducting the Trans-Atlantic voyage en-route Portsmouth England for a 2-day brief stop for fuel. MONTEREY subsequently visited numerous ports in the Baltic Sea, Mediterranean and Black Sea and trained with allied Navies. On November 1, 2011, the ship returned to Norfolk. MONTEREY subsequently underwent a Selective Restricted Availability at BAE Systems at Norfolk which lasted until late April 2012.

After months of training and inspections, MONTEREY departed her homeport on April 8, 2013, for another independent BMD deployment to the Fifth Fleet in the Middle East. Following a refueling stop at Funchal, Portugal, on April 17, she transited the Straits of Gibraltar on April 19 and arrived at her first liberty port Livorno, Italy, staying there April 22-25. MONTEREY continued to Souda Bay, Greece, for missile exchange and refueling before transiting the Suez Canal southbound on May 4. The ship arrived at Bahrain for a port visit in mid-May and subsequently operated under Fifth Fleet control until mid-October, when MONTEREY conducted a turn-over with USS HOPPER (DDG 70). On October 20, MONTEREY transited the Suez Canal northbound escorting USS NIMITZ (CVN 68) and remained in the Mediterranean until December 22, when she passed the Rock of Gibraltar and started her homeward transit. MONTEREY arrived at Norfolk, Va., on January 5, 2014, after her extended nine-month deployment.

Later in 2014, MONTEREY entered the BAE Systems Norfolk Ship Repair shipyard for an Extended Drydocking Selected Restricted Availability (E-DSRA) which lasted well into 2015. November and December 2015 saw her at sea again, operating with the DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER (CVN 69) and also exercising with the Chinese Navy ships PLAN JINAN (DDG 152), PLAN YIYANG (FFG 548) and PLAN QIANDAO HU (AOR 886) in early November.

From March 13, 2016, till April 14, 2016, MONTEREY was underway for a Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX) and Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFEX) of the DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER Strike Group in preparation for the group's upcoming deployment.

This deployment commenced on June 1 when MONTEREY departed Norfolk and headed for the Mediterranean along with the other units of the DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER Strike Group. She entered the Mediterranean on June 16 and after a port visit to Koper, Slovenia, transited the Suez Canal on July 1. Arabian Gulf operations kept MONTEREY busy until mid-December, when she started her voyage to the Mediterranean. The Suez Canal was transited on December 23 and MONTEREY arrived at Palma de Mallorca on December 31 for a three-day liberty visit. After short stops at Rota, Spain, and Mayport, Fla., MONTEREY returned to Norfolk on January 19, 2017.

The time at home was short because on October 16, 2017, MONTEREY departed Norfolk again on a surge independent deployment heading back to the Mediterranean. Following stop at Civitaveccia, Italy, and Souda Bay, she transited the Suez Canal southbound in mid-November and subsequently operated in the Fifth Fleet Area of Operations. On April 14, MONTEREY launched 30 Tomawhawk cruise missiles from the Red Sea on Syrian targets as retaliation for the country's alleged use of chemical weapons the week before. Three days later, the ship transited the Suez Canal northbound and started her voyage home. MONTEREY arrived at Norfolk on May 6, 2018.

On September 10, 2018, MONTEREY entered the Marine Hydraulics Industries (MHI) Ship Repair & Services shipyard at Norfolk for a Selected Restricted Availability (SRA). She remained there until mid-March 2019, when she moved back to the Naval Base preparing for sea trials. The following months were filled with local exercises and inspections and on January 11, 2021, MONTEREY departed Norfolk for a Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX), as part of the USS DWIGHT D. EISENHOWER CSG, in the Cherry Point, Charleston and Jacksonville Operation Areas. Back in Norfolk on February 9, she departed again on February 24 for a scheduled deployment. After arriving in the Mediterranean, MONTEREY continued to the Black Sea for a port visit to Constanta, Romania, March 22-23, before transiting the Bosporus Strait southbound on March 24. The ship transited the Suez Canal southbound on April 2 and joined the Fifth Fleet. On From May 6, the MONTEREY seized a large shipment of illicit weapons from a stateless dhow, while underway in the northern Arabian Sea. On August 11, 2021, MONTEREY became the first US Navy warship to visit the newly constructed Egyptian Naval Base at Berenice in the Red Sea. She remanied in the Red Sea until the end of August when she commenced her homebound journey via the Suez Canal. MONTEREY returned to Norfolk on September 17, 2021.

On October 25-29, the ship conducted an ammunition offload at Naval Weapons Station Yorktown and finished the year with three short underways in the first half of December.

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Homeports of USS MONTEREY:

commissioned at Mayport, Fla.
1990 - 1996Mayport, Fla.
1996 - 2022Norfolk, Va.

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About the Ship’s Name, about the City of Monterey:

The city in California with a population of 31000 is honored by the ship's name. In 1602, the Spanish explorer reached this area and named the bay after the Count of Monterey, the then vice-king of Mexico. The settlement started by founding a Franciscan mission in 1770. Monterey had been the center of whale hunting and the sardines fishing. From 1775 till 1846, it was the capital of upper California. Then it got US. It had been place of conventions for the legislative assembly of California.

In present time it is a famous recovery place and a center of publishing and electronics, for producing electronic equipment.

On the 19th of September, 1846, General Zachary Taylor, with a force of 6,625 men, arrived at Monterey. The city, which sprawled before Taylor, presented a formidable aspect to the would-be conqueror. Monterey's southern and eastern limits rested on the Santa Catarina River, relatively safe from assault. Southwest, and just across the river from Nueva Leon's capital, stood Federal Hill, from which a single-gun redoubt and Fort El Soldado commanded the city. Directly across the river from these works, and even more imposing, rose the precipitous Independence Hill, boasting a sandbag redoubt on its western end, and a fortress, Bishop's Palace, on the east. North of the city stood Fort Black, a massive stone work mounting twelve guns. East of it, next to the river, was Fort Teneria with four guns and, behind it, a well- manned, fortified tannery. Two hundred yards south stood Fort Diablo. Throughout Monterey, houses were fortified with loopholes and sandbags, and streets had been barricaded. Garrisoning the awesome labyrinth of defenses were 10,000 regular troops led by General Pedro de Ampudia.

Starting on the morning of 20 September, Taylor stormed the heavily defended city. The Bishop's Palace fell for the Americans on 21 September. The Americans were forced to take each house in succession, since the houses were solidly built, and the streets strongly barricaded. The battle lasted until 23 September, with the Mexican forces contesting every foot of ground, until only the Citadel remained in their possession. On the morning of 24 September, General Ampudia surrendered. He and his army were permitted to march out with honors of war.

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USS MONTEREY Patch Gallery:

MED '91-'92MED '92 HSL DetachmentMillennium Cruise HSL-42 Det.4MED 2004-2005 HSL Detachment

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The photo below was taken by Karl-Heinz Ahles and shows the USS MONTEREY at Naval Base Norfolk, Va., on May 11, 1999.

The photos below were taken by me and show the USS MONTEREY at Naval Base Norfolk, Va., on October 29, 2010.

The photos below were taken by me and show the USS MONTEREY at Naval Base Norfolk, Va., on May 6, 2012.

The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning and show the USS MONTEREY at BAE Systems Norfolk Ship Repair, Norfolk, Va., during her Extended Drydocking Selected Restricted Availability (E-DSRA). The photos were taken on October 23, 2014.

The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning and show the USS MONTEREY at BAE Systems Norfolk Ship Repair, Norfolk, Va., near the end of her Extended Drydocking Selected Restricted Availability (E-DSRA). The photos were taken on April 29, 2015.

The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning and show the USS MONTEREY at Naval Base Norfolk, Va., on October 6, 2015.

The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning during an open ship event aboard USS MONTEREY during Fleet Week New York in New York City. The photos were taken on May 26, 2017.

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The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning and show the MONTEREY at Naval Base Norfolk, Va., on October 4, 2017.

The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning and show the MONTEREY at Marine Hydraulics Industries (MHI) Ship Repair & Services shipyard for a Selected Restricted Availability (SRA) on September 21, 2018.

The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning and show the MONTEREY during the Fleet Fest 2019 at Naval Base Norfolk, Va., on October 19, 2019. Note the Tomahawk marks on the VLS cells. These marks indicate from which cells the 30 Tomawhawk missiles were fired that were used on April 14, 2018, during strikes on Syrian targets as retaliation for the country's alleged use of chemical weapons.

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The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning and show the MONTEREY at Naval Base Norfolk, Va., on December 26, 2021.

The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning and show the MONTEREY at Naval Base Norfolk, Va., on September 6, 2022. MONTEREY is preparing for decommissioning which is scheduled for September 26.

The photos below were taken by Michael Jenning and show the ex-MONTEREY laid up at the former Philadelphia Naval Shipyard, Philadelphia, Penn., on May 26, 2023. The ship alongside is her decommissioned sistership VELLA GULF (CG 72).

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