USS PELELIU LHA 5
The contract to build LHA 5 was awarded on Nov 6, 1970, Peleliu's keel was laid on Nov. 12, 1976, and the ship was launched Nov. 11, 1978. USS Peleliu was christened Jan. 6, 1979, by Margaret Hayward, wife of former Chief of Naval Operations, Adm. Thomas B. Hayward. Commissioning took place in Pascagoula, Miss., at Ingalls Shipyard May 3, 1980.
LHA 5 is the first U.S. Navy ship to carry the name Peleliu, and the second ship named in honor of the World War II battles fought in the Palau Islands. The first ship was USS Palau (CVE 122), a Commencement Bay Class aircraft carrier, which served from 1946 until being decommissioned in 1954. The Peleliu is named in honor of the 3rd Amphibious Force's assault and capture of Peleliu Island in the fall of 1944.
The ship departed Ingalls Shipyard under command of Capt. T.P. Scott. Flight operations were frequently conducted and the ship logged its 500th landing on May 30, 1980.
On May 17th USS Peleliu arrived in Colon, Panama, to begin unrigging for the transit of the Panama Canal. She departed on May 20 and tied up in Balboa, Panama, (Pacific side of the canal) twelve hours later. After five days of rerigging in Balboa, the amphibious assault ship departed and entered her homewaters of the Pacific. She proceeded south from Panama and crossed the equator on the night of May 27th, which is the record for the shortest period between a ship's commissioning and "Crossing the Line."
On May 28 LHA 5 headed northerly enroute Mazatlan, Mexico, departing the Baja port on June 7th enroute San Diego, California. Most of the events the Peleliu and her crew participated in during this initial transit were "firsts" and the underway refueling with USNS Taluga was no exception, occurring on June 8th. She arrived at Naval Air Station, San Diego, on June 10th for a one-day stop prior to proceeding to Long Beach, Calif., her homeport.
In 1981 The amphibious assault ship completed its Post-Shakedown Availability and join the fleet as a fully operational unit of the Navy's Pacific Amphibious Force. The latter part of the year found the ship and her crew well trained having past numerous work up evaluations. The Engineering department passed their Operational Propulsion Plant Examination (OPPE) in 42--hours vice the normal 72 hours required, and REFTRA was successfully accomplished just prior to the holiday season. All efforts were directed toward preparing USS Peleliu for its first western Pacific/Indian Ocean deployment.
1982 marked Peleliu's first year as a fully operational unit of the Navy's Pacific Fleet Amphibious Force. In January, she was the flagship in a no-notice, non-combatant emergency evacuation exercise conducted off San Clemente Island, and on March 28 the ship got underway for its maiden deployment to the western Pacific and Indian Ocean.
USS Peleliu completed its second deployment on October 4, 1984. One month later she ship deployed to the northern Pacific Ocean to participate in an exercise held off the coast of Amchitka in the Aleutian Islands. LHA 5 conducted its 10,000th accident free landing during this northern Pacific exercise.
The first fleet firing of the RIM 116 RAM (Rolling Airframe Missile) occurred in October 1995 from USS Peleliu.
As of February 1996 the Peleliu ARG, consisted of USS Denver (LPD 9) and USS Anchorage (LSD 36) with 15th MEU, was operating in the Arabian Gulf in support of Operation Southern Watch enforcing U.N. sanctions against Iraq in conjunction with the USS Nimitz Battle Group.
By mid-1997 USS Nimitz Battle Group, USS Peleliu Amphibious Ready Group and the 13th MEU had completed Pacific Joint Task Force Exercise 97-2 (JTFEX 97-2) which certified each element as ready to deploy in the fall. USS Nimitz Battle Group and LHA 5 ARG replaced the USS Constellation Battle Group and USS Boxer ARG on a six-month deployment.
The amphibious assault ship deployed with USS Comstock (LSD 45), USS Juneau (LPD 10) and Marines of the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit to the Persian Gulf in August 28, 1997 and participated in exercise Eager Mace 98. In Sepember the ARG took part in Fleet Battle Experiment - Bravo's "Silent Fury" phase along with the Constellation Battle Group.
June 21, 1999 USS Peleliu ARG departed San Diego for a six-month deployment, with the 11th MEU, to the western Pacific and Arabian Gulf. During the deployment, the ships visited ports in Korea, Singapore, Indonesia, Australia, Thailand and the Arabian Gulf. In July 1999 U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Midget (WHEC 726) joined the LHA 5 Amphibious Ready Group for operations enroute to the Arabian Gulf. This was the first time since World War II that a Coast Guard cutter had joined a Navy amphibious group for real-world operations. During the deployment which concluded on December 21, COMPHIBRON One, as Commander of the USS Peleliu Amphibious Ready Group, participated in Operation Stabilise in East Timor, providing heavy lift and humanitarian assistance to an Australian-led coalition force. COMPHIBRON One also executed exercises Iron Magic '99 and Red Reef 10 in the Arabian Gulf.
USS Peleliu Amphibious Ready Group was deployed to the western Pacific, Indian Ocean, and Arabian Gulf from August 13, 2001 through March 4, 2002. Following the events of September 11th, LHA 5 ARG was a central support force for Operation Enduring Freedom. The amphibious assault ship was the first ship in the Global War on Terrorism to deploy Marines to the beach, and then fly over 200 miles to the desert country of Afghanistan.
Following its deployment she underwent a comprehensive overhaul at National Steel and Shipbuilding Corporation shipyard in San Diego. Peleliu's first milestone since pulling out of dry dock was successfully passing the light-off assessment (LOA) administered by Afloat Training Group (ATG) Pacific. LOA is an important process for a ship. Before a ship can light off, its engineering plant must be inspected by ATG to ensure that it is in proper condition for light off.
In 2002 it was announced that the Navy intended to deploy LHA 5 as the center of an Expeditionary Strike Group that would consist of cruisers, destroyers, frigates and submarines in addition to the normal number of amphibious vessels. The Peleliu ESG will be commanded by a rear admiral in an experiment to determine which of the two options works out best.
In April 2003 the "Gunbearers" of Helicopter Combat Support Squadron (HC) 11 put their newly acquired MH-60S Knighthawk helicopters through their paces while conducting daylight landing qualifications aboard USS Peleliu. This evolution marked the first time the Navy's newest helicopter landed on a Pacific Fleet naval ship.
In May, USS Peleliu took part in a Expeditionary Strike Group Exercise in which members of the crew and the strike group participated in a non-combatant evacuation operation (NEO). A NEO is the Navy and Marine Corps way of extracting civilians from a hostile environment.
August 22, USS Peleliu departed Naval Station San Diego for a surge deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
December 1, The Peleliu recently anchored at Bahrain-Bell Sitrah Anchoarge for a port call to Manama.
January 2, 2004 Fifteen individuals were detained and an estimated 2,800 pounds of hashish (approximately $11 million street value) were seized by U.S. and coalition maritime forces following the interception of a dhow Jan. 1 in the North Arabian Sea. Peleliu, Port Royal (CG 73) and Germantown (LSD 42) conducted the interception. Boarding teams discovered the hashish underneath blocks of ice and in hidden compartments. This interception is the third in two weeks by coalition maritime forces.
March 9, USS Peleliu, commanded by Capt. Pamela A. Markiewicz, returned to homeport from a six-and-a-half month deployment in support of the Global War on Terrorism.
April 22, The amphibious assault ship is currently in the Pacific Ocean conducting a series of testing to prepare for an upcoming Inspection Survey (INSURV).
November 23, USS Peleliu is currently underway in the Pacific Ocean conducting a "Friends and Family" day cruise.
January 26, 2005 LHA 5 is currently underway in the Pacific Ocean conducting routine trainings.
February 17, The San Diego-based ship is currently underway off the coast of southern California for training evolutions. Returned to San Diego on March 2.
June 15, The amphibious assault ship is currently off the coast of southern California conducting routine operations.
June 27, USS Peleliu is currently off the coast of Oahu, Hawaii, conducting infantry and amphibious trainings at Marine Corps Training Area Bellows.
June 28, LHA 5 conducted amphibious training on the beaches of Pacific Missile Range Facility, on the island of Kauai, Hawaii. Inport Naval Station Pearl Harbor on June 30.
July 15, USS Peleliu embarked the 3rd Assault Amphibious Battalion, 1st Marine Divisione, to return to their home base after completing amphibious training on and off the coast of Hawaii on July 12.
July 20, LHA 5 is currently underway off the coast of Camp Pendleton for ammo onload with the USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6).
August 4, The Peleliu is currently underway in the SOCAL Op. Area for deck landing qualifications.
September 8, USS Peleliu returned to Naval Station San Diego after a four-day underway for routine training. Underway again from Sept. 14-18.
November 18, Four ships and about 3,500 Sailors and Marines of USS Peleliu Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) 3 successfully completed their ESG Integration Exercise (ESGINT), with the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), off the coast of southern California. Completed Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX) on Dec. 16.
January 13, 2006 The Peleliu departed homeport for Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFEX), the third of three at-sea training evolutions designed to prepare the strike group for its scheduled western Pacific deployment.
February 15, USS Peleliu ESG departed San Diego for a scheduled deployment in support of the Global War on Terrorism.
March 4, USS Pasadena (SSN 752) participated in an Undersea Warfare Exercise (USWEX) with the USS Peleliu ESG-3 near Hawaii, from Feb. 21-24. During pre-deployment training in January, USS Asheville (SSN 758) joined the ESG 3 ships for 13 days off the coast of southern California.
April 8, LHA 5 ESG entered the Arabian Gulf to relieve USS Nassau (LHA 4) ESG, on station in the 5th Fleet AoR.
April 27, The amphibious assault ship departed Manama, Bahrain, after a four-day port visit.
July 9, USS Peleliu Expeditionary Strike Group concluded operations in the U.S. Navy's 5th Fleet. COMPHIBRON 3's flagship completed more than 5,337 flight deck evolutions while in the region, with more than 585 hours in support of OIF. From Peleliu's deck, AV-8B Harriers assigned to Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron (HMM) 166 (Reinforced) also flew 268 missions into Iraq in support of ground units engaged in OIF - oftentimes flying more than 2,400 miles in one day.
August 5, The Peleliu arrived in Naval Station Pearl Harbor for the final port visit before returning to San Diego.
August 16, USS Peleliu, commanded by Capt. Ed Rhoades, returned to homeport after a six-month deployment.
April 3, 2007 The amphibious assault ship is currently underway off the coast of southern California preparing for its upcoming humanitarian deployment in support of Pacific Partnership.
May 23, USS Peleliu departed San Diego to assists in a humanitarian and civic-action mission to several nations in Southeast Asia and Oceania called "Pacific Partnership". The deployment is being coordinated with several nations and, like the recent hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) deployment, will carry out in cooperation with several non-government relief organizations.
May 29, The Peleliu pulled into Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, for a brief port visit. Inport Manila, Philippines, from June 18-2?.
July 21, USS Peleliu is currently in port of Da Nang, Vietnam, for a ten-day port visit to render humanitarian assistance in support of Pacific Partnership 2007.
August 1, LHA 5 recently departed Singapore after a four-day port call.
August 9, The amphibious assault ship is currently anchored off the coast of Madang, Papua New Guinea.
September 6, USS Peleliu departed Majuro, Republic of the Marshall Islands, completing a four-month humanitarian assistance mission to Southeast Asia and Oceania, consisting of a variety of medical, construction and engineering projects. Inport Pearl Harbor from Sept. 12-14.
September 20, USS Peleliu returned to Naval Base San Diego after a four-month underway period in support of Pacific Partnership.
October 30, LHA 5 is currently underway conducting routine operations off the coast of southern California.
February 20, 2008 USS Peleliu departed San Diego for a two-week underway period, after completing a three-month Planned Maintenance Availability (PMA). Sailors and Marines aboard the "Iron Nickel" will conduct ammunition onload, engineering testing, combat systems and damage control training and flight operations. A three-day port visit to Puerto Vallarta, Mexico, is also scheduled.
March 13, The Peleliu Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG) 3 is currently underway for Amphibious Squadron (PHIBRON)/Marine Expeditionary Unit Integration Training (PMINT), with the 15th MEU. Underway for Marine Air Ground Task Force training exercises from April 9-16
May 4, USS Peleliu ESG departed San Diego for a scheduled deployment in support of the global war on terrorism.
May 30, Six local mariners from the Philippines were rescued from a sinking vessel by U.S. Navy personnel, as ships from the Peleliu ESG transited the Strait of Balabac.
June 25, LHA 5 is currently underway in the Arabian Gulf supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom.
August 27, The amphibious assault ship is currently underway in the Red Sea conducting Maritime Security Operations (MSO).
October 10, USS Peleliu, along with USS Halsey (DDG 97), arrived in Sydney, Australia, for a scheduled port visit.
October 25, LHA 5 pulled into Naval Station Pearl Harbor for a brief port call to embark friends and family members for a Tiger Cruise.
November 4, USS Peleliu returned to homeport after a six-month deployment in the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet Areas of Responsibility.
January 22, 2009 The Peleliu became the first LHA-class amphibious assault ship to receive the new expeditionary fighting vehicle (EFV) in its welldeck during trials off the coast of Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif.
March 24, USS Peleliu entered the dry-dock at NASSCO shipyards as part of her four-month Drydocking Planned Maintenance Availability (DPMA), that commenced on March 4. The three main evolutions that will take place are the MV-22 modification, local area network upgrade to Fiber Optical Gigabit Ethernet LAN and hull preservation.
September 4, Capt. David A. Schnell relieved Capt. Marcus A. Hitchcock as CO of the Peleliu during a change-of-command ceremony aboard the ship.
October 10, LHA 5 returned to San Diego after a four-day sea trials off the coast of southern California.
October 29, USS Peleliu is currently assisting with recovery operations following the collision of a U.S. Marine Corps AH-1 Super Cobra helicopter and a U.S. Coast Guard C-130 Hercules aircraft, near San Clemente Island, at 0710 p.m. on Oct. 26.
November 6, The amphibious assault ship is currently onloading ammunition off the coast of Camp Pendlton, Calif.
November 19, The Peleliu is underway off the coast of San Diego conducting engineering certifications.
February 15, 2010 USS Peleliu is currently underway in the SOCAL Op. Area conducting AV-8B Harrier Deck Landing Qualifications. LHA 5 successfully completed the Board of Inspection and Survey (INSURV) assessment on Feb. 5.
February 22, The Peleliu ARG is currently participating in initial integration exercise, with the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), off the coast of southern California.
March 19, The three ships are currently conducting Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX) in preparation for an upcomig deployment.
April 17, USS Peleliu Amphibious Ready Group is currently underway for a Certification Exercise (CERTEX).
May 22, USS Peleliu departed homeport for a scheduled Middle East deployment after two-day delay because of a mechanical problem.
June 5, The amphibious assault ship pulled into Apra Harbor, Guam, for a routine port call.
June 20, USS Peleliu, along with USS Pearl Harbor (LSD 52), arrived off the coast of Dili, Timor-Leste, to participate in exercise Crocodilo, a series of civil programs and training exercises with the Timor Leste and Australian militaries.
June 27, LHA 5 arrived in Darwin, Australia, for a scheduled port visit.
August 12, The first CH-53E Super Stallion helicopters were launched from the flight deck of the Peleliu, off the coast of Carachi, as part of the continued U.S. humanitarian assistance to Pakistan in support of flood relief from a recent monsoon.
August 15, Capt. David A. Schnell was relieved of command by Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. Navy 5th Fleet, Vice Adm. Mark I. Fox, due to "loss of confidence" in his ability to command. The decision to relieve Schnell comes as a result of an investigation into allegations that he acted in an unprofessional manner toward several crew members that was inappropriate, improper and unduly familiar. Capt. Mark E. Cedrun assumed temporary command of USS Peleliu.
October 8, The Peleliu pulled into Jebel Ali, United Arab Emirates, for upkeep.
October 31, LHA 5 completed its humanitarian assistance off the coast of Pakistan after the last two CH-46E "Sea Knight" helicopters from HMM-165 (Reinforced) landed to the flight deck. The ship transported over 5 million tonnes of food and relief supplies, and had rescued more than 9,000 people.
November 4, USS Peleliu entered the Indian waters off the Mumbai harbour to secure the coastline ahead of U.S. President Barack Obama’s visit on Saturday.
November 13, The Peleliu anchored off the coast of Phuket, Thailand, for a three-day port call.
November 22, The amphibious assault ship pulled into Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines, for a routine port visit.
December 9, LHA 5 ARG arrived in Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam for a brief port port call to refuel, onload supplies and embark family and friends for a "Tiger Cruise".
December 18, USS Peleliu ARG returned to Naval Base San Diego after a seven-month deployment in the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet Areas of Responsibility.
March 16, 2011 The Peleliu is currently conducting an ammunition offload and transfer, off the coast of southern California, with the USS Makin Island (LHD 8).
June 8, General Dynamics NASSCO was awarded an $18 million modification to previously awarded contract for the USS Peleliu Phased Maintenance Availability (PMA). The work is expected to be completed by October 2011 and includes the planning and execution of depot-level maintenance, alterations, and modifications that will update and improve the ship’s military and technical capabilities.
December 13, USS Peleliu departed San Diego for sea trials off the coast of southern California.
February 1, 2012 A MV-22 Osprey, assigned to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VMM) 166, for the first time conducted flight operations aboard the LHA 5. The amphibious assault ship is currently underway for flight deck certifications.
February 7, The Peleliu departed homeport to participate in a bilateral annual exercise Iron Fist 2012, off the coast of San Clemente Island, between U.S. military forces and the Japan Self-Defense Force, Feb. 7-13.
April 27, USS Peleliu departed Naval Base San Diego in preparation for engineering certifications.
May 31, USS Peleliu ARG departed San Diego to participate in a three-week Amphibious Squadron (PHIBRON) 3/Marine Expeditionary Unit Integration Training (PMINT), with the 15th MEU, in the SOCAL Op. Area.
June 22, Capt. John D. Deehr relieved Capt. James T. Cox as CO of the Peleliu during a change-of-command ceremony aboard the ship at sea.
June 25, The Peleliu Amphibious Ready Group departed homeport for Group Sail operations.
July 18, USS Peleliu ARG departed Naval Base San Diego for a three-week Composite Training Unit Exercise (COMPTUEX).
August 28, LHA 5 ARG completed a two-week Certification Exercise (CERTEX) off the coast of southern California.
August 29, The amphibious assault ship departed Naval Base San Diego for a Friends and Family Day Cruise.
September 17, USS Peleliu departed San Diego for a scheduled deployment in the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet Areas of Responsibility (AoR).
September 24, The Peleliu pulled into Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, for a brief port call.
October 6, Two AV-8B Harriers, assigned to Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron (HMM) 364 Rein, made an unscheduled landing on the island of Palau due to inclement weather.
October 10, USS Peleliu ARG arrived off the coast of Dili, Timor-Leste, to participate in a joint training exercise Crocodilo 2012, from Oct. 10-16.
October 22, The Peleliu anchored off the coast of Phuket, Thailand, for a goodwill port visit. Arrived in Central Command on Oct. 30.
November 8, LHA 5 Amphibious Ready Group recently anchored off the coast of Kuwait Naval Base for a two-week bilateral amphibious exercise Eager Mace 13-1, between the U.S. and Kuwait Armed Forces.
December 20, Capt. Shawn W. Lobree relieved Capt. Capt. Mark T. Sakaguchi as Commodore, Amphibious Squadron (PHIBRON) 3, during a change-of-command ceremony aboard the Peleliu.
December 27, USS Peleliu recently anchored in the port of Salalah, Oman, for a routine port call to refuel.
February 22, 2013 The Peleliu arrived at Aqaba Naval Base, Jordan, for a routine port call to conduct agricultural counter-measure washdowns of all embarked equipment.
March 25, USS Peleliu pulled into Jebel Ali, United Arab Emirates, for a four-day visit to Dubai. The ARG returned to the 7th Fleet on April 4.
April 15, The Peleliu moored at Ocean Terminal in Hong Kong for a four-day port visit.
May 3, The amphibious assault ship arrived in Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam for a three-day port call.
May 14, USS Peleliu returned to Naval Base San Diego after an eight-month deployment.
June 14, LHA 5 departed San Diego to participate in a multinational amphibious exercise Dawn Blitz 2013 off the coast of southern California.
From July 15-19, the Peleliu was underway for ammo offload off the coast of Camp Pendleton, Calif., in preparation for a six-month Phased Maintenance Availability (PMA); Commenced availability on Aug. 14.
December 6, Capt. Paul C. Spedero, Jr., relieved Capt. John D. Deehr as CO of the USS Peleliu during a change-of-command ceremony on board the USS Midway Museum.