The USS Pearl Harbor stopped in its namesake port this weekend as it concluded a Pacific deployment—its last for awhile as the ship prepares for a round of repairs and upgrades.
The Harpers Ferry-class dock landing ship was participating in the 18th iteration of the Navy's Pacific Partnership, a series of annual deployments focused on humanitarian operations and disaster response. It was in Pearl Harbor for a supply and refueling stop after completing the deployment, but departed Tuesday for its home port in San Diego.
Capt. Claudine Caluori led the deployment, which saw 1, 500 service members from eight countries sailing aboard the Navy's USS Pearl Harbor and USS Jackson, as well as the South Korean navy's ROK Cheon Ja Bong and the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force's JS Shimokita. Caluori described it as unlike other missions she has led at sea.
“Normally we're out patrolling, we're out doing exercises with our partners and allies, ” she said. “But this was just an incredible mission to … get on a personal level with folks and at the same time really go and learn from each other.”
The Pacific Partnership has its roots in the U.S. response to the aftermath of the deadly December 2004 tsunami that devastated parts of South and Southeast Asia, during which the U.S. mobilized military assets and personnel to support the relief effort. Since 2006 the Navy has deployed medical personnel, engineers and…