The Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) arrived Thursday at Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka (CFAY) for the first time as the U.S. Navy's only forward-deployed aircraft carrier.
Ronald Reagan's arrival to CFAY highlights her role as the fifth U.S. carrier forward deployed to the 7th Fleet area of responsibility following USS George Washington (CVN 73), USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63), USS Independence (CV 62) and USS Midway (CV 41).
Ronald Reagan departed Naval Base North Island in Coronado, on Aug. 3 after completing a hull swap with the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier George Washington. During her transit across the Pacific Ocean, Ronald Reagan completed a blue water certification, replenishment at sea, day and night flight operations and damage control and medical drills.
Ronald Reagan arrived in Yokosuka equipped with the U.S. Navy's newest technological upgrades including a new local area computer network, the Consolidated Afloat Networking Enterprise Services (CANES).
"Ronald Reagan is 11 years newer than George Washington, which means the [Ronald Reagan] has benefited from 11 years of evolving technology," said Capt. Christopher Bolt, Ronald Reagan's commanding officer.
Although Ronald Reagan newly arrived to Yokosuka, the carrier brings about two-thirds of the George Washington crew who cross decked to Ronald Reagan during the hull swap.
In 2011 Ronald Reagan served as a refueling station for Japanese coast guard and U.S. military helicopters, providing humanitarian assistance and disaster relief off the Sendai Coast of Japan during Operation Tomodachi, after the Great East Japan Earthquake and tsunami.
Ronald Reagan and its embarked air wing, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5, provide a combat-ready force that protects and defends the collective maritime interests of the U.S. and its allies and partners in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.