After rescuing female yachters, Ashland arrives in Okinawa

USS Ashland (LSD 48) arrived in Okinawa, Oct. 30, as part of a scheduled port visit to prepare for the joint U.S. exercise Blue Chromite. The port visit also serves as a disembarkation point for the two mariners who had been adrift in the Pacific Ocean for several months. The Ashland crew rescued Jennifer Appel, Natasha Fuiava, and Appel’s two dogs Zeus and Valentine Oct. 25 after they had been stranded at sea with a failed engine, a broken mast and were far from their intended destination of Tahiti. After…

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USS Ashland Departs Okinawa to Begin Blue Chromite 2018

USS Ashland (LSD 48) departed Okinawa Oct. 31, with embarked 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines, 3rd Marine Division to conduct Blue Chromite 2018. Blue Chromite is a joint field training exercise held annually between the U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps to strengthen interoperability and increase proficiencies through amphibious and aerial operations. “The purpose is to further our relationship with the Navy,” said Maj. Benjamin Cather IV, acting executive officer for 1st Battalion, 3rd Marines. “The exercise will improve and ensure our amphibious and aerial capabilities. Force from sea, air and…

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USS Ashland assists distressed mariners in Pacific

The Sasebo-based amphibious dock landing ship USS Ashland (LSD 48) rendered assistance to two distressed mariners, Oct. 25, whose sailboat had strayed well off its original course. The mariners, Jennifer Appel and Tasha Fuiaba, both from Honolulu, and their two dogs had set sail from Hawaii to Tahiti this spring. They had an engine casualty May 30 during bad weather but continued on, believing they could make it to land by sail. Two months into their journey and long past when they originally estimated they would reach Tahiti, they began…

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USS Ashland Arrives in Yokosuka for Training-Focused Stop in Indo-Asia-Pacific Deployment

USS Ashland (LSD 48), pulled into Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Oct. 2, for a training availability and to complete shipboard assessments and certifications. More than 150 Ashland Sailors-a significant portion of the crew-will take part in over five different schools including General Shipboard Firefighting, Aircraft Firefighting, Command Managed Equal Opportunity and Security Reaction Force-B training. The ship will also conduct three major certifications to include Fleet Support Operations-Medical, 3-M and Supply 1.2 during the port visit. “Training is vital to what we do,” said Lt. Christopher Barmore, the training officer onboard…

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BHR ESG ships, 31st MEU completes certification exercise

Bonhomme Richard Expeditionary Strike Group (BHR ESG), with embarked 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), completed a certification exercise (CERTEX) Aug. 18. CERTEX is conducted to evaluate the integration of all elements of the BHR ESG and the 31st MEU, testing their combined ability to plan and execute mission essential tasks. The Bonhomme Richard ESG consists of the flagship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6), USS Ashland (LSD 48) and USS Green Bay (LPD 20), which are all on patrol off the coast of Australia. CERTEX evolutions took place from August 12-18…

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Somali Pirate Sentenced to Life for 2010 Attack on USS Ashland

April 26, 2017 – Mohamed Farah, 31, of Somalia, was sentenced to life plus 10 years in prison for engaging in piracy and committing other offenses pertaining to the attack on the USS Ashland, a U.S. Navy ship, in April 2010. Today’s announcement was made by Acting Assistant Attorney General for National Security Mary B. McCord, U.S. Attorney Dana J. Boente for the Eastern District of Virginia, Special Agent in Charge Martin Culbreth of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office in Virginia, and Special Agent in Charge Maureen Evans of the…

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Bonhomme Richard Completes Patrol, Returns to Sasebo

April 10, 2017 – The amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) arrived in Sasebo, Japan, completing its regularly-scheduled patrol in the 7th Fleet area of responsibility (AOR), April 10. Bonhomme Richard departed White Beach, Okinawa, after disembarking personnel, vehicles and equipment of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), April 8. “We completed some valuable training on this patrol,” said Capt. Jeffrey Ward, Bonhomme Richard’s commanding officer. “The crew did a fantastic job working with the Marines. We increased our level of knowledge and enhanced our readiness to respond,…

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