Monday, August 30, 2010

Kearsarge Group, Marines to Provide Pakistan Relief

Norfolk August 30, 2010 - The Kearsarge Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and the 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) deployed Aug. 27 from Norfolk to support U.S. humanitarian assistance in Pakistan.

The Kearsarge group is made up of Amphibious Squadron 4, 26th MEU, the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge (LHD 3), the amphibious dock landing ship USS Carter Hall (LSD 50) and the amphibious platform dock ship USS Ponce (LPD 15). The deployment of the Kearsarge ARG was moved up; it originally was scheduled to deploy in late September 2010.

"USS Kearsarge, USS Carter Hall and USS Ponce have exceeded my expectations in every aspect and are fully able to accomplish any mission that we might be assigned," said Capt. Larry Grippin, Kearsarge ARG's commander. "We are all grateful for the opportunity to flex the disaster relief capability of this Navy/Marine Corps team. This mission shows that the U.S. military is truly a global force for good."

The Kearsarge group will work with the Pakistan government to provide logistical support, emergency transportation and supplies to aid flood relief efforts.

"The crew enthusiastically accelerated their deployment preparations," said Capt. Baxter Goodly, the commanding officer of Kearsarge. "Even though we're deploying early, the crew is eager and proud to be heading over to help the people of Pakistan."

After their humanitarian mission to Pakistan is complete, the Kearsarge ARG and the 26th MEU will continue with their original mission.

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