03/02/2015: USS Makin Island (LHD 8), USS Comstock (LSD 45) and San Diego (LPD 22) return to their homeport of San Diego.
The Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group, which included nearly 4,500 Sailors and Marines, returned after a seven-month deployment to the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet areas of operations.
Credit:Navy Public Affairs Support Element West:2/25/15
According to a story by Jennifer Hlad in Stars and Stripes and published February 26, 2015:
As the USS Makin Island made its way around Point Loma and into San Diego Bay on Wednesday morning, sailors took advantage of the cell phone signal to text loved ones awaiting their arrival.
A tugboat pulled the amphibious assault ship into Pier 13 as family members on shore shouted, waved and held up signs for their sailors, who stood at parade rest along the edges of the flight deck. When they were released from formation, sailors cheered, and a few began singing the theme song from “Team America: World Police.”
About 1,900 sailors with the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group had returned home to Naval Base San Diego after a seven-month deployment that sailors called rough but rewarding…..
During the seven months away from home, the Makin Island made stops in Hong Kong, Singapore, Oman and Hawaii, but also spent 115 straight days at sea, sitting off the coast of Yemen. Typically, a ship on deployment goes into port every 30 days or so, said Capt. Jon Rodgers, the ship’s commander.
The Makin Island, USS San Diego and USS Comstock also rescued 11 researchers from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration who were trapped on Pacific atolls during a hurricane in August.
The ship was also involved in other rescue attempts.
In October, a Marine Osprey crew member was lost at sea after he and another Marine had to bail out shortly after takeoff from the Makin Island.
In December, Navy SEALs were able to reach Luke Somers, an American journalist, and South African teacher Pierre Korkie being held in an al-Qaida compound in Yemen, but both were shot by their captors. One died on the rescue aircraft, the other during surgery on the Makin Island…..