The Freedom-variant littoral combat ship USS Little Rock (LCS 9), along with the “berzerkers” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 28 Detachment 5 and U.S. Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment (LEDET) 106, departed from Naval Station Mayport Mar. 29, to support U.S. 4th Fleet area of operations.

Little Rock will support counter-illicit trafficking in the Caribbean. Little Rocks’s operations will involve practical exercises and exchanges with partner nations, supporting U.S. 4th Fleet interoperability and reinforcing the U.S. position as the regional partner of choice.

Deploying an LCS to the region aims to demonstrate the U.S. commitment to international cooperation and regional security. The ship’s size, speed, and agility make LCS ideal for narcotics interdictions, partner engagements and port access.

“I am incredibly proud of this crew’s hard work. The Little Rock, Berzerker, and Coast Guard team is ready for tasking. We are looking forward to fighting the flow of illicit trafficking and supporting operations in the 4th Fleet area of responsibility,” said Cmdr. Michael R. Chesnut, commanding officer of Little Rock.

Manned by over 100 Sailors and Coastguardsmen, Little Rock’s crew will consist of surface warfare mission-package personnel, a U.S. Coast Guard law enforcement detachment and an aviation detachment, who will operate the embarked MH-60S helicopter.

USS Little Rock is operationally assigned to U.S. 4th Fleet and is one of four littoral combat ships under Surface Division 21.