By Jeanette Steele | 2:54 p.m. Sept. 8, 2015
Another step in historic carrier swap
The aircraft carrier George Washington left San Diego Bay on Tuesday morning after a roughly month long visit.
The ship was supposed to leave Friday but was delayed by last-minute repairs.
The carrier takes with it 1,400 San Diego sailors who are members of the “Three Presidents Crew” – a group who will sail on three aircraft carriers in the space of six months during a historic carrier port swap being conducting this year.
The flattop was stationed in Yokosuka, Japan, from 2008 until recently. Now the ship heads around the tip of South America to Virginia, where it will enter a four-year refueling of its nuclear core.
On the way, the GW will take part in a training exercise called Southern Seas 2015.
The destroyers Chafee from Pearl Harbor and McFaul from Norfolk, Va., will accompany the carrier.
“The crew of USS George Washington is grateful to San Diego for welcoming us to your beautiful city, and we are very excited to be a part of Southern Seas 2015,” said Capt. Timothy Kuehhas, commanding officer.
“Our journey around South America is one that few aircraft carriers get to experience, and we are eager to work with our partner nations.”
Next up in the carrier roulette: The Theodore Roosevelt is scheduled to arrive in San Diego in the fall to make the city its new home port.