USS Donald Cook

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USS Donald Cook
Donald Cook underway
United States
Name: USS Donald Cook
Namesake: Donald Cook
Ordered: 19 January 1993
Builder: Bath Iron Works, Bath, Maine
Laid down: 9 July 1996
Launched: 3 May 1997
Acquired: 21 August 1998
Commissioned: 4 December 1998
Homeport: Naval Station Rota
Motto: Faith Without Fear
Status: in active service, as of 2015
General characteristics
Class & type: Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
  • Light: approx. 6,765 tons
  • Full: approx. 8,900 tons
Length: 505 ft (154 m)
Beam: 66 ft (20 m)
Draft: 31 ft (9.4 m)
Propulsion: 4 General Electric LM2500-30 gas turbines, two shafts, 100,000 total shaft horsepower (75 MW)
Speed: >30 knots (56 km/h)
Sensors and
processing systems:
Electronic warfare
& decoys:
Aircraft carried: 1 × SH-60 Sea Hawk helicopter can be embarked

USS Donald Cook (DDG-75) is an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer in the United States Navy.

Named for Donald Cook, a Vietnam War prisoner of war who died in captivity, the destroyer was commissioned in 1998. It was one of the first U.S. warships to come to the aid of USS Cole after it was damaged by suicide bombers on 12 October 2000. In 2003, the ship fired Tomahawk missiles during Operation Iraqi Freedom.[1]

On 16 February 2012, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus announced Donald Cook will be one of four ships to be homeported at Naval Station Rota, Spain.[2]

Service history[edit]

On 24 February 2012, Donald Cook was awarded the 2011 Battle Efficiency "E" award.[3]

On 8 April 2014, U.S. military officials confirmed the deployment of Donald Cook to the Black Sea as part of the latest U.S. military effort to demonstrate support for Eastern European allies concerned about Russia's troop buildup along its border with Ukraine.[4]

On 12 April 2014, an unarmed Russian Su-24 "Fencer" fighter jet made twelve close-range passes of the USS Cook during a patrol of the western Black Sea.[5] According to a Pentagon spokesman, "The aircraft did not respond to multiple queries and warnings from Donald Cook, and the event ended without incident after approximately 90 minutes."[6] In an unfounded report on the event, state-run Voice of Russia falsely claimed that the Su-24 disabled the ship's Aegis combat systems and caused the demoralized resignations of 27 crew members.[7] Retired US Navy officer and Defense analyst Christopher Hammer described the event as the "standard harassment package" and "about as tame a flyby as you can get."[8]

On 14 April 2014, Donald Cook visited Constanta, Romania. The President of Romania, Traian Băsescu, toured the ship during the visit. Donald Cook then conducted various exercises in concert with the Romanian Navy before departing the Black Sea on 24 April, 2014.[9]

On 26 December 2014, for the second time, according to the US Navy, the destroyer entered the Black Sea in order to reassure and demonstrate US commitment to work closely with NATO allies.[10] Donald Cook participated in exercises with the Turkish Navy including an underway replenishment and other exercises with Yavuz-class frigate TCG Fatih on 28 December 2014. The ship visited Constanta, Romania on 30 December and Varna, Bulgaria on 8 January 2015. Donald Cook participated in exercises with Ukrainian Navy ship Hetman Sahaydachniy on 11 January 2015. Donald Cook departed the Black Sea on 14 January 2015.[11]


On 12 November 2009, the Missile Defense Agency announced that Donald Cook would be upgraded during fiscal 2012 to RIM-161 Standard Missile 3 (SM-3) capability in order to function as part of the Aegis Ballistic Missile Defense System.[12]

In popular culture[edit]

Donald Cook was featured in the "Super Fast Warship" episode of Build It Bigger.


  1. ^ "Command History Report 2003 from Commander USS Donald Cook to Director of Naval History, Department of the Navy" (PDF). 2004. 
  2. ^ "Navy Names Forward Deployed Ships to Rota, Spain" (Press release) (NNS120216-15). United States Navy. 16 February 2012. 
  3. ^ Garcia, Rosalie (1 March 2012). "Naval Surface Forces Announces 2011 Battle E Awardees". United States Navy. 
  4. ^ Starr, Barbara (8 April 2014). "U.S. Navy ship to arrive in Black Sea by Thursday". CNN. 
  5. ^ Ryan, Missy (14 April 2014). "Russian jet's passes near U.S. ship in Black Sea 'provocative' -Pentagon". Reuters. Retrieved 20 November 2015. 
  6. ^ Garamone, Jim (14 April 2014). "Russian Aircraft Flies Near U.S. Navy Ship in Black Sea". American Forces Press Service. Retrieved 20 November 2015. 
  7. ^ "Russian Su-24 scores off against-the American USS Donald Cook". Voice of Russia. 21 April 2014. 
  8. ^ Mulrine, Anna (15 April 2014). "Russian aircraft buzz US Navy destroyer: How big a deal?". Christian Science Monitor. 
  9. ^ "USS Donald Cook Departs Black Sea". 24 April 2014. 
  10. ^ "US Naval Forces Europe – Africa/US 6th fleet: USS Donald Cook to enter Black Sea". KyivPost. 26 December 2014. 
  11. ^ Schumacher, Daniel (14 January 2015). "USS Donald Cook Departs Black Sea". 
  12. ^ Ewing, Philip (12 November 2009). "MDA announces next 6 BMD ships". Navy Times. (subscription required (help)). 

Further reading[edit]

  • Sanders, Michael S. (1999). The Yard: Building a Destroyer at the Bath Iron Works. New York: HarperCollins. ISBN 0-06-019246-1.  (Describes the construction of Donald Cook at Bath Iron Works.)

External links[edit]