Amphibious assault ship Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) departed Sasebo, Japan, earlier this week for a routine patrol in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, which falls under the 7th Fleet area of responsibility, according to Navy officials.

The Bonhomme Richard will finalize certifications and conduct joint for operations along with the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit.

"This in-port period allowed Bonhomme Richard's crew and contractors to perform key maintenance in preparation for our first patrol of 2017," said Capt. Jeffrey Ward, commanding officer of Bonhomme Richard. "With the superior performance I've seen across the deck plates, I am certain the crew is ready to effectively execute our mission and continue to provide a rapid-response capability within our AOR."