The guided-missile destroyer Donald Cook has concluded a surge deployment to U.S. 6th Fleet after getting underway in late January.
While tensions with Russia were rising due its massing of troops on the Ukraine border, Donald Cook deployed along with the Mitscher, the Gonzalez and The Sullivans to participate in a variety of maritime activities supporting the U.S. 6th Fleet and NATO allies, providing them additional flexibility, Navy spokesman Cmdr. Arlo Abrahamson told Navy Times in early February. But defense officials insisted the surge was not in response to Russian provocations.
In February, the Donald Cook took part in NATO’s Exercise Dynamic Guard 2022, an electronic warfare exercise that Norway hosted in the North Sea.
“The crew demonstrated their tenacity by executing multinational exercises and national tasking on short notice during this surge deployment,” Cmdr. Matt Curnen, commanding officer of Donald Cook, said in a Navy news release. “Our operations over the past few months have demonstrated our proficiency and capability as well as reaffirming our commitment to the NATO Alliance. I could not be more proud of the resiliency and professionalism the crew displayed during this deployment.”
The destroyer returned to Naval Station Mayport April 24 and is slated to start a “major” maintenance availability, the Navy said. The ship was previously homeported in Rota, Spain, for seven years, but has been based in Florida since July 2021.
The Mitscher and The Sullivans returned to their home ports earlier this month following the surge deployment.