NAVAL STATION MAYPORT, Fla. – The USS Carney arrived Sunday at Naval Station Mayport after spending five years abroad.
The guided-missile destroyer was forward deployed to Rota, Spain, as part of Destroyer Squadron 60. While in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations, the ship played a vital role in strengthening U.S. relationships with NATO allies and regional partners.
The USS Carney’s homeport shifted. Its last stateside stay was in 2015 in Mayport. Now, the USS Roosevelt is in Rota and the USS Carney is back at Mayport.
“This is a huge accomplishment for Carney nation to return back to Mayport,” said U.S. Navy Cmdr. Chris Carroll.
Carroll said he’s proud to be home.
“Carney was busy, extremely busy, over the last five years, and it is really nice to come back home, to return these hard-working sailors back here so they can see their families and talk about all the wonderful things they were doing out there for their nation,” he said.
News4Jax cameras captured the moment Carroll was reunited with his family.
When asked whether the coronavirus affects these moments, Carroll said: “Well, the mission is the same. The homecoming is the same. Sailors want to get back with their families.”
Navy Quartermaster Kyra Buggs’ family waited patiently to see her. The family sent News4Jax video of the reunion.
“This was her first time leaving home, too,” Latarsha Thomas told News4Jax of the couple’s newborn daughter.
As for the USS Carney, after a two-week journey from Spain, the ship will transition into a maintenance phase pier side at Mayport.
“We are in the process of upgrading some of our combat systems so that we maintain our competitive advantage over our adversaries,” Carroll said. “So we will go through that maintenance avail, we will do our part and then head back out to sea once she is all done and do whatever our nation calls.”