LCS 18
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The Charleston (LCS 18) is the ninth ship in the Independence-class littoral combat ships and the sixth ship in the U.S. Navy named in honor of the city of Charleston, South Carolina.

June 28, 2016 The keel authentication ceremony for the LCS 18 was held at the Austal USA shipyard in Mobile, Ala.

August 26, 2017 The Pre-Commissioning Unit (PCU) Charleston was christened during a 10 a.m. CST ceremony at Austal USA shipyard in Mobile, Alabama. Mrs. Charlotte Riley, the wife of former Mayor of Charleston Joe Riley, served as sponsor of the ship. Cmdr. Christopher K. Brusca (LCS Crew 216) is the prospective commanding officer.

September 13, PCU Charleston exited the assembly bay #5 at Austal's facility for the first time and was transported down river, while sitting on a deck barge, to BAE Systems Southeast Shipyard's floating dry-dock; Launched on Sept. 14.

April ?, 2018 The Charleston entered the floating dry-dock at the World Marine of Alabama shipyard in Mobile.

May 1, LCS 18 recently undocked and moored at combined wharf on Austal USA shipyard; Moved to Vessel Completion Yard, at the northern tip of Pinto Island, on May ?.

June 14, PCU Charleston departed Mobile for the first time to conduct Builder's sea trials in the Gulf of Mexico; Moored at Vessel Completion Yard on June 16; Day-long underway for acceptance trials with the INSURV on July 27.

August 31, U.S. Navy accepted delivery of the future USS Charleston during a short ceremony aboard the ship; Commenced Crew Move Aboard (CMA) process on Nov. 10.

February 17, 2019 PCU Charleston (Crew 216) departed Mobile, Ala., for the last time en route to its namesake city; Moored at Wharf D2 on Naval Station Mayport, Fla., from Feb. 20-22.

February 24, LCS 18 moored at Berth 1, Columbus Street Terminal in Port of Charleston, S.C., for an eight-day visit in preparation for its commissioning ceremony.

March 2, USS Charleston was commissioned during a 10 a.m. EDT ceremony at Charleston, South Carolina.

March 6, The Charleston moored at Pier 13N on Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story, Virginia; Underway on March 2?.

April 6, The littoral combat ship moored at Pier 16 in Port of Cristobal, Panama, for an overnight stop to refuel; Transited the Panama Canal southbound on April 7; Moored at Berth 3, Multipurpose Terminal in Port of Mazatlan, Mexico, from April 13-15.

April 19, USS Charleston made a brief stop at Navy Fuel Farm (NFF), on Naval Base Point Loma, before moored at Berth 6, Pier 1 in its homeport of Naval Base San Diego for the first time; Underway off the coast of San Diego from May 23-24 and May 28-29.

June 17, The Charleston moored at North Mole Pier on Naval Base San Diego after a week-long underway for Career Orientation Training for Midshipmen (CORTRAMID) summer cruise.

June 27, USS Charleston moored at Berth 1/2, Broadway Pier in downtown San Diego; Held an "Open House" from June 28-30; Moored at North Mole Pier on July 1; Underway again from July 8-11.

July 18, The Charleston moored at Berth 5, Pier 13 on Naval Base San Diego after a day-long underway off the coast of southern California.

August 1, The Charleston moored at North Mole Pier on Naval Base San Diego after a one-day underway in the SOCAL Op. Area; Underway again on Aug. 12; Conducted Surface Ship Radiated Noise Measurement (SSRNM) testing, off the northeast coast of San Clemente Island, on Aug. 14; Returned home on Aug. 15.

August 30, LCS 18 moored at Berth 6, Pier 6 on Naval Base San Diego after a two-day underway in the SOCAL Op. Area; Underway for Final Contract Trials (FCT) with the INSURV from Sept. 18-19; Brief underway on Sept. 25; Moored at NFF for a brief stop to refuel before underway again on Oct. 4.

October 7, USS Charleston moored at Pier 35 South in San Francisco, Calif., for a four-day port visit to participate in the 39th annual Fleet Week celebration; Participated in a Parade of Ships on Oct. 11.

October 14, The Charleston moored at Berth 6, Pier 6 on Naval Base San Diego; Moored at NFF for a brief stop to refuel on Oct. 24; Underway on Oct. 25.

October 30, Austal USA, Mobile, Ala., was awarded $21,5 million for cost-plus fixed-fee task order N69316-20-F-4000 against previously awarded basic ordering agreement (N00024-19-G-2318) for the USS Charleston's Post Shakedown Availability (PSA). Work will be performed in Seattle, Wash., and is expected to be completed by September 2020.

November 1, USS Charleston moored at Pier M2 on Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam, Hawaii, for a five-day port call before underway at the Pacific Missile Range Facility (PMRF) Barking Sands Op. Area, off the western coast of Kauai; Moored at Pier M2 again from Nov. 12-13; Returned home on Nov. 19.

December 6, USS Charleston moored at Berth 6, Pier 6 on Naval Base San Diego after a four-day underway in the SOCAL Op. Area.

December 6, Cmdr. James H. Hoey relieved Cmdr. Christopher K. Brusca as CO of the LCS Crew 216 (Blue) during a change-of-command ceremony on board the Charleston.

January 8, 2020 USS Charleston moored at Bravo Pier, NAS North Island for a brief stop to offload ammunition; Underway en route to Seattle on Feb. 3; Moored pierside at Vigor Shipyards on Feb. 7.