NORFOLK -- Nearly 6,500 sailors from the USS Harry S. Truman Strike Group are expected home Sunday, the Navy announced Wednesday.
The Truman's eight month deployment is marked with history. The strike group left Norfolk April 11. The carrier, air wing and several ships that comprise the strike group returned home in mid-July, becoming the first such group to take part in a new defense strategy introduced by Defense Secretary Jim Mattis -- called dynamic force employment -- meant to shake up the predictability of how the military operates for U.S. adversaries. The group departed again August 28 after what leaders called a working port visit.
The departure came just days after Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson visited Norfolk for the official re-establishment of the Navy's Second Fleet, whose responsibility extends from the U.S. Eastern Seaboard to the northern coast of Russia. The re-establishment of the Second Fleet is a check on emerging threats from Russia and China.
Truman again made history in October when it became the first U.S. aircraft carrier in nearly three decades to enter the Arctic Circle as part of a massive NATO exercise, Trident Junction.
The ship spent part of its first three months deployed to the Navy's Sixth Fleet area of operations, from which it struck the Islamic State in Syria.
Ships and aircraft that are returning include Truman, the nine squadrons of Carrier Air Wing One, the guided-missile cruisers USS Normandy and the guided missile destroyers USS Forrest Sherman and Arleigh Burke.
This article is written by Courtney Mabeus from The Virginian-Pilot and was legally licensed via the Tribune Content Agency through the NewsCred publisher network. Please direct all licensing questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.