After more than two decades in Hawaii, a guided-missile cruiser is on its way to a new home on the mainland.
USS Lake Erie departed Pearl Harbor Friday for its new homeport in San Diego, where it will replace USS John Paul Jones as a rotational Ballistic Missile Defense deployer.
“The sailors and families of Lake Erie extend a heartfelt aloha. We will miss the beauty of the Hawaiian island chain and, more importantly, the warm friendships we leave behind,” said Lake Erie Commanding Officer Capt. John S. Banigan.
Lake Erie was commissioned in Pearl Harbor on July 24, 1993. It was the first Navy ship in modern times to be commissioned in Hawaii since the commissioning of the USS Willamette in 1982.
In 2008, Lake Erie made international headlines when it used a tactical missile to intercept an orbiting satellite before it could re-enter the Earth’s atmosphere.