NORFOLK (NNS) -- The commander of U.S. Fleet Forces Command presented the 2008 Battenberg Cup to the crew of the amphibious assault ship, USS Kearsarge (LHD 3) Nov. 2, during a ceremony held in the ship's hangar bay.
The Battenberg Cup is presented annually to the Atlantic Fleet Battle Efficiency Award winner, ship or submarine, with the greatest accumulation of crew achievements.
Since the award's inception in 1905, Kearsarge is the first large deck amphibious ship to win the Battenberg Cup.
During the award presentation to the Kearsarge crew, Adm. J.C. Harvey Jr, recognized the crew's accomplishment.
"Ultimately, the power and promise of our Navy is in our Sailors, not simply our ships," said Harvey. "You have shown yourselves to be the best Sailors we have, and you made your ship the best ship we have. I'm very proud to serve alongside you and salute you for your achievement. Well done."
Commander, U.S. Surface Force Atlantic, Rear Adm. Kevin Quinn, congratulated the crew of Kearsarge for their outstanding work.
"Everyone tells you they have the best ship, but there can be only one. And this year, it's USS Kearsarge," Quinn said. "You not only beat out every submarine, but every surface ship and every aircraft carrier in the whole fleet."
Kearsarge Commanding Officer Capt. Walter Towns shared their enthusiasm and praised the crew.
"This award demonstrates what a great crew as a whole the Kearsarge has," said Towns. "It was not just one outstanding department that excelled and it was not just individual Sailors giving their all. It was a team effort with every man and woman doing their part to ensure mission success. This crew makes me proud and it is my honor to lead them."
Kearsarge is currently undergoing a 10-month dry-dock phased maintenance availability at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, Va. The ship expects to begin sea trials later this month.
For more news from U.S. Fleet Forces Command, visit www.navy.mil/local/clf/.