NORFOLK, Va. – The guided-missile destroyer USS Winston S. Churchill (DDG 81) will return to Naval Station Norfolk Friday after nearly nine months deployed in the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of operation.
The ship participated in a 14-Day Restriction of Movement on June 22, 2020, before getting underway for pre-deployment exercises and training in order to combat the effect of COVID-19 on ship’s readiness. It officially deployed on August 10, 2020.
When the ship gets to the base, Churchill Sailors will have the opportunity to receive their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine before disembarking, if they wish to do so.
Churchill, along with the embarked Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 70, traveled more than 60,000 miles during the deployment and completed 26 strategic choke point transits, escorting a total of 23 vessels over 14 of those transits.
The ship, commanded by Capt. Timothy F. Stanley, passed through the Strait of Gibraltar twice, the Suez Canal twice, the Straits of Bab-el-Mandeb 14 times (nine transits with escort duties) and the Strait of Hormuz eight times (five transits with escort duties).