NORFOLK (NNS) -- USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) has completed its final underway period Feb. 18 before preparing to head to its new home in the Norfolk Naval Shipyards for an upcoming dry-docking planned incremental availability (DPIA) period.
During Truman's underway period, the crew completed many milestones, including the support of the first E-2D Advanced Hawkeye suitability testing on a carrier, the training of five Fleet Replacement Squadrons (FRSs), the announcement of Truman's third consecutive Battle "E" award and an ammunition offload.
"We accomplished a lot during this underway period," said Capt. Joe Clarkson, Truman's Commanding Officer. "The accomplishments we have made could not have been possible without the hard work, pride and professionalism the crew has displayed time and time again."
Truman Sailors also hosted multiple African American History Month events, a Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. celebration and a Super Bowl party.
With the ship scheduled to be in DPIA for over a year, crew members who have become accustomed to the rigors of a high-tempo operational schedule for the last two years now have ample opportunities to better themselves personally and professionally.
"I am really excited to be coming home and to be done with being out to sea for a while," said Damage Controlman Fireman Andrew Pacheco. "I will be around my kids and be a bigger part of their lives now."
Sailors will have many options available to them, such as striving to earn their college degrees, various physical fitness opportunities, and even pursuing some life goals.
With the ship inhabitable while in DPIA, crew members that would normally live on board, will also get a chance to relax in places they can call all their own when they move into private partner venture (PPV) housing.
"PPV housing offers Sailors who don't receive basic allowance for housing (BAH) an opportunity to live off the ship," said Electronics Technician Chief (SW) James Czeiszperger, Truman's PPV representative. "It's their own apartment that's jam-packed with amenities, making it an ideal place to relax away from the ship."
"I am really looking forward to moving into my PPV housing," said Culinary Specialist Seaman Frances Vazquez. "It will be a different atmosphere than the ship life and I will have so much more privacy in my own place!"
Sailors will also have more free time to focus on staying in shape. The options range from gyms on base to fitness centers located throughout the Norfolk region.
"There will be plenty of fitness options available to Sailors," said Truman Fit Boss Nathan Owen. "The departments will be mandating PT times for their Sailors, so there are no excuses why Sailors can't stay in shape. Everything for their PT needs will be provided for them. It will help them get in shape for the summer, too."
Navy fitness programs, such as "Crews Into Shape", the "24-Week Program" and several team sporting events, will also be offered to the crew.
In addition to PPV housing and more physical fitness opportunities, Sailors may now pursue their educational goals by enrolling in college classes in Norfolk's local community.
"Since we are going to be home for a while, now is the time to set yourself up for your future," said Personnel Specialist Seaman Abner Colmenares, an education services office (ESO) representative. "I encourage all Sailors to take advantage of their free time and attempt to earn their degree and earn as many college credits as they can. If any Sailors need any help or guidance, we will be available and the ESO will be open during our yard period."
Based on Truman's successful deployment, the upcoming DPIA period should exceed Clarkson's high expectations of Truman Sailors to come together once again to "Give'em Hell" and continue their winning streak.
"Now that we will be home for an extended period of time, it will be a great opportunity for Sailors to take a break from the shipboard environment," said Clarkson. "We still need to uphold our pride and professionalism to get us through the yard period safely, according to our budget and completed on-time. I have full confidence in our crew to ensure we have a successful DPIA period."
For more news from USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn75/.