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USS Porter returns to Naval Station Norfolk following FDNF-E service

10 October 2022

From Petty Officer 1st Class Ryan Seelbach, Commander, U.S. 2nd Fleet Public Affairs

NORFOLK, Va. - The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) returned to Naval Station Norfolk, marking the end of its time as a Forward Deployed Naval Forces-Europe (FDNF-E) destroyer, Oct. 9, 2022.

Porter departed Naval Station Rota, Spain Sept. 28th following seven years as an FDNF-E destroyer assigned to Destroyer Squadron 60 and Commander, Task Force (CTF) 65, operating under command and control of U.S. 6th Fleet in the U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa area of operations.

"Porter's time in 6th Fleet was an invaluable experience for all. The crew and I depart Rota, Spain at the highest state of readiness thanks to the many operations and exercises conducted with our NATO Allies and partners," said Cmdr. Christopher Petro, Porter's commanding officer. "We are extremely grateful for personal and professional development provided by the opportunities and challenges encountered as a member of Forward Deployed Naval Forces Europe."

Rear Adm. David Patchell, vice commander at U.S. 2nd Fleet, greeted the ship upon mooring at Naval Station Norfolk.

“I won’t speak for long because I know I am standing between you and your family and friends, but I wanted to extend my congratulations on a successful return to the home front after your eight year forward deployment to Rota. As an FDNF Europe destroyer, your team proudly represented our Navy and our Nation, working side by side with our Allies and Partners, building interoperability and providing invaluable defensive capabilities over the course of 11 patrols within 6th Fleet. Your dedication to the mission is not lost on us. Thank you for all you have done for our Navy, our Nation, and our Allies and partners.”

Porter conducted 11 patrols in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations, finishing the most recent patrol in July 2022. Throughout these patrols, Porter sailed through the Mediterranean Sea, Baltic Sea, Black Sea and High North. The ship has also crossed the Atlantic three times, building interoperability with NATO Allies and partners throughout the region.

During its seven years with the FDNF-E force, Porter participated in many joint operations with Allies and other branches of service. Some of the notable exercises the ship participated in include FOST, BALTOPS, Atlas Handshake, Joint Warrior, Sea Breeze, Polaris, and Atlantic Resolve.

Porter will be replaced on the FDNF-E force by USS Bulkeley (DDG 84), the latest destroyer to arrive to Rota, Spain. USS Bulkeley was commissioned in December of 2001, and is named for Vice Admiral John D. Bulkeley.

Porter is named for Commodore David Porter, and his son, Adm. David Dixon Porter, and is the fifth ship to bear his name. Commodore David Porter served in the Quasi War, First Barbary War, War of 1812, and in the West Indies. He took command of numerous ships, including the USS Constitution. He is known for first originating the saying, "Free Trade and Sailors Rights.”

U.S. 2nd Fleet, reestablished in 2018 in response to the changing global security environment, develops and employs maritime forces ready to fight across multiple domains in the Atlantic and Arctic in order to ensure access, deter aggression and defend U.S., allied, and partner interests.


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