USS James E. Williams

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USS James E. Williams (DDG-95)
A grey ship on the seas.
USS James E. Williams (DDG-95) conducting operations in the Red Sea in 2009.
History
United States
Name: USS James E. Williams
Namesake: James E. Williams
Ordered: 6 March 1998
Builder: Ingalls Shipbuilding
Laid down: 15 July 2002
Launched: 25 June 2003
Commissioned: 11 December 2004
Motto: Lead from the Front
Status: in active service
Badge: USS James E. Williams DDG-95 Crest.png
General characteristics
Class and type: Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
Displacement: 9200 tons
Length: 509 ft 6 in (155.30 m)
Beam: 66 ft (20 m)
Draft: 31 ft (9.4 m)
Propulsion: 4 × General Electric LM2500-30 gas turbines, 2 shafts, 100,000 shp (75 MW)
Speed: >30 kn (56 km/h; 35 mph)
Range: 4,400 nmi (8,100 km; 5,100 mi) at 20 kn (37 km/h; 23 mph)
Complement: 32 officers and 348 enlisted
Armament:
Aircraft carried: 2 × SH-60 Sea Hawk helicopters

USS James E. Williams (DDG-95) is an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer in the United States Navy. The ship was named for Chief Petty Officer James Eliott Williams (1930–1999), a River Patrol Boat commander and Medal of Honor recipient from the Vietnam War who is considered to be the most decorated enlisted man in Navy history.

Overview[edit]

History[edit]

USS James E. Williams was laid down on 15 July 2002 by the Northrop Grumman Ship Systems at Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, Mississippi and launched on 25 June 2003, sponsored by Elaine Weaver Williams, Chief Petty Officer Williams' widow. On 11 December 2004, James E. Williams was commissioned in Charleston, South Carolina, Commander Philip Warren Vance in command.

On 2 May 2006, James E. Williams deployed on its maiden deployment as part of the Global War on Terrorism Surface Strike Group (GWOT SSG) 06-2. James E. Williams, along with the amphibious transport dock Trenton and guided-missile cruiser Hue City, joined the Global War on Terrorism Surface Strike Group (GWOT SSG) 06-2 overseas on 18 April.[1] On 17 October 2006, James E. Williams completed its first deployment conducting anti-piracy operations off the coast of Somalia as part of the maritime security operations.

James E. Williams deployed again on 9 July 2007 as a part of the Enterprise Carrier Strike Group. The strike group consisted of the aircraft carrier Enterprise, the destroyers Forrest Sherman, Arleigh Burke and Stout; the guided-missile cruiser Gettysburg; and the fast-attack submarine Philadelphia, and also the fast combat support ship USNS Supply.[2] On the morning of 30 October 2007, Combined Maritime Forces Headquarters, based in Bahrain, received a call from the International Maritime Bureau, located in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, providing the status of the North Korean cargo vessel Dai Hong Dan, which had been taken over 29 October by Somali pirates. The ship was approximately 60 nautical miles (110 km) northeast of Mogadishu, Somalia. At that time, James E. Williams was about 50 nautical miles (93 km) from the vessel and sent a helicopter to investigate the situation. The destroyer arrived in the vicinity of the Korean ship midday local time and contacted the pirates via bridge-to-bridge radio, ordering them to give up their weapons. At that point, the Korean crew had confronted the Somali pirates, regained control of the ship and began communicating with James E. Williams, requesting medical assistance. The crew said the pirates had been in control of the bridge, but the crew had retained control of the steering and engineering spaces. The crew of James E. Williams provided care and assistance for approximately 12 hours to crew members and Somali pirates aboard Dai Hong Dan. Six pirates were captured and one was killed. The pirates remained aboard Dai Hong Dan.[3] In November 2007, James E. Williams aided the crew of the Taiwanese ship, M/V Ching Fong Hwa 168. After the Somali pirates returned to shore, the destroyer escorted the Taiwanese ship out of Somali waters and provided needed supplies and medical assistance.[4]

On 19 December 2007, she returned from her second deployment to the Fifth Fleet AOR in support of Operations Iraqi and Enduring Freedom.

On 20 April 2009, James E. Williams left on her 3rd deployment in 3 years, deploying to the sixth and fifth Fleet areas of operations from Naval Station Norfolk as the lead element of the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group. James E. Williams conducted maritime security operations in the Mediterranean Sea and Persian Gulf regions, and work with international maritime forces to ensure security and awareness in the maritime domain.[5] She returned to her homeport at Naval Station Norfolk on 19 October 2009.[6]

Controversies[edit]

  • In December 2009, 1½ months after the ship returned to Norfolk from a six-month cruise to the Mediterranean and Arabian seas, nine crewmembers were given non-judicial punishment for fraternization. Five of the nine were male chief petty officers while the other four were female junior enlisted sailors. The chiefs involved were being processed for separation from the Navy. In addition, the ship's skipper, Commander Paul Marquis, and top enlisted sailor, Command Master Chief Timothy Youell, were relieved of their positions and reassigned to shore-based administrative duties. Neither Marquis nor Youell were implicated in the fraternization cases or alleged sexual assault. Their failures are ones of leadership. Furthermore, one other crew member faced criminal charges for sexual assault. Marquis' Executive Officer CDR Daniel Sunvold, who was serving as executive officer on James E. Williams, was reassigned to the same position on the destroyer Bainbridge. He was not implicated in any of the allegations.[7][8] In December 2009 CDR T.J. Linardi took command as Commanding Officer.[citation needed]
  • In September 2014, it was announced the Commanding Officer, CDR Curtis Calloway, and Command Master Chief of James E. Williams were replaced pending an investigation into the command climate. At the time, James E. Williams was about midway through an eight-month deployment.[9] At that time, CAPT Anthony L. Simmons, from the staff of Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 2, assumed command.[10]

Ports visited[edit]

During the 2014-2015 Deployment, James E. Williams made port calls to Rota, Spain; Djibouti, Djibouti; Port Victoria, Seychelles; and Port Louis, Mauritius.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ McLaurin, PHAN Mandy. "USS James E. Williams Crew Prepares For Maiden Voyage". Navy News Service. Retrieved 17 September 2014. 
  2. ^ Green, MC3 James H. (8 July 2007). ""Big E" Deploys". Retrieved 17 September 2014. 
  3. ^ "USS James E. Williams Assists Crew of Pirated Vessel". Navy News Service. 31 October 2007. Retrieved 17 September 2014. 
  4. ^ Martinez, Luis (5 November 2007). "U.S. Navy Triumphs Over Pirates on the High Seas". blogs.abcnews.com. 
  5. ^ "USS James E. Williams deploys". WAVY-TV 10. 2009-04-20. Archived from the original on 2009-10-04. 
  6. ^ Crouch, Lori (2009-10-19). "USS James E. Williams returns home". WAVY-TV 10. Archived from the original on 2011-07-27. 
  7. ^ Wiltrout, Kate (5 December 2009). "Destroyer CO, Master Chief Removed Over Fraternization Cases". Norfolk Virginian-Pilot. 
  8. ^ "CO,CMC,5 CPO's Fired On USS James E. Williams". Navy Times. 2009-12-04. 
  9. ^ Larter, David (16 September 2014). "Destroyer Williams' commanding officer, CMC and former XO reassigned amid investigation". Navy Times. Retrieved 17 September 2014. 
  10. ^ "Simmons Assumes Command of USS James E. Williams". US Fleet Forces Command. 16 September 2014. 
  11. ^ USS James E. Williams history

External links[edit]