USS Cowpens (CG-63)
USS Cowpens (CG-63) pulls alongside USS Kitty Hawk (CV-63)
|Namesake:||The Battle of Cowpens|
|Operator:||United States Navy|
|Ordered:||8 January 1986|
|Builder:||Bath Iron Works|
|Laid down:||23 December 1987|
|Launched:||11 March 1989|
|Commissioned:||9 March 1991|
|Homeport:||Naval Base San Diego|
|Motto:||Victoria Libertatis Vindex
(Victory Vindicates Liberty)
|Status:||in active service, as of 2014[update]|
|Class & type:||Ticonderoga-class cruiser|
|Displacement:||Approx. 9,600 long tons (9,800 t) full load|
|Length:||567 feet (173 m)|
|Beam:||55 feet (16.8 meters)|
|Draft:||34 feet (10.2 meters)|
4 × General Electric LM2500 gas turbine engines, 80,000 shaft horsepower (60,000 kW)
|Speed:||32.5 knots (60 km/h)|
|Complement:||33 officers, 27 Chief Petty Officers, and approx. 340 enlisted|
2 × 61 cell Mk 41 vertical launch systems containing
|Aircraft carried:||2 × Sikorsky SH-60B or MH-60R Seahawk LAMPS III helicopters.|
USS Cowpens (CG-63) is a Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruiser in service with the United States Navy. The ship is named after the Battle of Cowpens, a major American victory near Cowpens, South Carolina, in the American Revolution. She was built at the Bath Iron Works in Maine. The USS Cowpens is stationed at Naval Base San Diego.
In 2003, the USS Cowpens became the first United States Navy ship to launch ordnance in the opening stages of the Iraq War, in which she fired 37 Tomahawk cruise missiles. In March 2003 Cowpens was assigned to Carrier Group Five.
On 13 January 2010, the ship's commanding officer, Captain Holly Graf, was relieved of command by Rear Admiral Kevin Donegan, Commander, Carrier Strike Group Five, following the imposition of non-judicial punishment. The punishment followed an investigation which verified allegations of cruelty and maltreatment toward her crew, and conduct unbecoming an officer — violations of articles 93 and 133 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice, by Graf during her tenure as captain of the USS Cowpens. The investigation was initiated after multiple allegations and complaints of physical and verbal abuse were made to Naval Criminal Investigative Service and the Navy Inspector General by several members of the crew. Captain Graf was subsequently replaced as the commanding officer by Captain Robert Marin. A subsequent Time article revealed that Graf had a history of abusive treatment of subordinates in earlier assignments and that navy leaders had not acted on previous complaints about her behavior. The US Navy forced Graf into early retirement in 2012, but allowed her to do so at her current rank of Captain and under "honorable circumstances."
USS Cowpens was scheduled to be decommissioned on 31 March 2013. However, Cowpens was retained under the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013.
On December 5, 2013, she was involved in a minor confrontation with a small Chinese warship that was escorting the Chinese aircraft carrier Liaoning while conducting surveillance of Chinese ships in International waters in the South China Sea. After Cowpens refused a Chinese demand to leave the area, a Chinese amphibious dock ship crossed directly in front of the Cowpens and halted. The two vessels were barely 500 yards away when the captain of Cowpens ordered "all stop". Chinese admiral Yin Zhuo said that the Chinese action was intentional and that American ships sent to observe PLAN maneuvers would be "blocked". Pentagon spokesman Steve Warren said that American procedures had not been changed in light of the incident, but defense analyst Tim Brown said that it reflected "a growing willingness by the Chinese to engage in potentially reckless behavior".
- accessed May 2012
- Carter, David, J., "Admiral relieves Cowpens captain", Stars and Stripes, 16 January 2010.
- Ewing, Philip, "Cruiser CO relieved for ‘cruelty’", Navy Times, 16 January 2010.
- "Whale-Plowing, Cup-Hurtling Capt Holly Graf Finally Fired After Choking Subordinate". Susan Katz Keating. 18 October 2010. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
- [dead link]
- "Cruiser CO relieved for ‘cruelty’ - Navy News | News from Afghanistan & Iraq". Navy Times. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
- Thompson, Mark, "The Rise and Fall of a Female Captain Bligh", Time, 3 March 2010.
- Slavin, Erik, "Navy to let ousted captain of Yokosuka-based ship to get 'honorable' retirement", Stars and Stripes, 8 January 2012.
- Rabiroff, John. "U.S. military delivers 40 tons of supplies to hardest-hit areas," Stars and Stripes (US). 17 March 2011.
- "11 ships to be decommissioned in fiscal 2013 - Navy News | News from Afghanistan & Iraq". Navy Times. Retrieved 31 October 2012.
- "US Navy to retain four Ticonderoga-class cruisers in service". Naval-Technology.com. 28 September 2012, and National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013, p. 5.
- Navy decides not to scrap SD warship by Gary Robbins, U-T San Diego, April 15, 2013.
- Thayer, Carl (17 December 2013). "USS Cowpens Incident Reveals Strategic Mistrust Between U.S. and China". thediplomat.com. The Diplomat. Retrieved 17 December 2013.
- Carter, Liz (16 December 2013). "Chinese Admiral to U.S. Navy: 'We Will Block You'". foreignpolicy.com. Foreign Policy. Retrieved 16 December 2013.
- Ramirez, Luis (16 December 2013). "Pentagon Downplays Near-Collision in South China Sea". voanews.com. Voice of America. Retrieved 17 December 2013.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to USS Cowpens (CG-63).|
- USS Cowpens official web site
- navysite.de: USS Cowpens
- Yokosuka Naval Base Community Website
- USS Cowpens News
- USS Cowpens Veterans site
On the lighter side: Is the Cowpens cursed? A psychic weighs in.