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Carrier Strike Group Five

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Carrier Strike Group Five

Carrier Strike Group Five
Carrier Strike Group Five crest
Active April 25, 1944 to date
Country United States of America
Branch United States Navy Seal United States Navy
Type Carrier Strike Group
Part of U.S. Seventh Fleet
Garrison/HQ Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Japan
Nickname George Washington Carrier Strike Group
Motto First to Fight
Engagements World War II
Korean War
Vietnam War
Operation Desert Storm
Operation Enduring Freedom
Operation Iraqi Freedom
Website Official Website
Commander Rear Admiral Mark Montgomery

Carrier Strike Group 5, (CSG 5 or CARSTRKGRU 5), is the U.S. Navy carrier strike group assigned to the United States Pacific Fleet and permanently forward deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet.


U.S. Navy Carrier Strike Groups are employed in a variety of roles across the complete spectrum of warfare of maintaining sea control and projecting air power ashore to humanitarian assistance and disaster response. CSG 5 is responsible for unit-level training, integrated training, and material readiness for the group’s ships and aviation squadrons. As the only continuously forward deployed carrier strike group, CSG-5 does not stand down when the strike group is in Yokosuka, but instead continues to maintain command responsibilities over deploying Carrier Strike Groups and independently deployed cruises, destroyers, and frigates that operate in the Seventh Fleet operating area. The commander and staff are also responsible for the higher level Task Force 70 duties throughout the year in addition to the CSG-5 duties. The composition of the strike group in immediate proximity of the George Washington varies throughout the year.[1][2]

The CSG 5 Commander also serves as Battle Force Seventh Fleet and Commander, Task Force (CTF 70) for 7th Fleet. In these responsibilities, CSG 5 serves as the Commander of all surface forces (carrier strike groups, independently deploying cruisers, destroyers and frigates) in the 7th Fleet area of responsibility. CTF 70 also serves as the Theater Surface Warfare Commander (TSUWC) and Theater Integrated Air Missile Defense Commander (TIAMDC) for Seventh Fleet.

The Strike Group Flagship is the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier Carrier Air Wing Five (CVW 5) and its nine squadrons. As of May 2014, CSG 5 includes two Ticonderoga-class cruisers, and, Destroyer Squadron Fifteen (CDS 15), which serves as the Sea Combat Commander and is responsible for seven assigned Arleigh Burke-class destroyers.

George Washington and the nine surface combatant ships operate out of [3]

Subordinate units


Insignia Name Class
USS George Washington (CVN-73) Nimitz-class aircraft carrier

Destroyer Squadron 15 consists of 7 ships

Insignia Name Class
USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG-54) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
USS John S. McCain (DDG-56) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
USS Stethem (DDG-63) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
USS Lassen (DDG-82) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
USS McCampbell (DDG-85) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer
USS Mustin (DDG-89) Arleigh Burke-class destroyer

Other ships

Insignia Name Class
USS Antietam (CG-54) Ticonderoga-class cruiser
USS Shiloh (CG-67) Ticonderoga-class cruiser

CVW 5 consists of 9 Squadrons[4]

Code Insignia Squadron Nickname Assigned Aircraft
VFA 27 Strike Fighter Squadron 27 Royal Maces F/A-18E Super Hornet
VFA 102 Strike Fighter Squadron 102 Diamondbacks F/A-18F Super Hornet
VFA 115 Strike Fighter Squadron 115 Eagles F/A-18E Super Hornet
VFA 195 Strike Fighter Squadron 195 Dambusters F/A-18E Super Hornet
VAW 115 Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 115 Liberty Bells E-2C Hawkeye 2000
VAQ 141 Electronic Attack Squadron 141 Shadowhawks EA-18G Growler
VRC 30 Fleet Logistics Support Squadron 30 Det. 5 Providers C-2A Greyhound
HSC 12 Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 12 Golden Falcons MH-60S Seahawk
HSM 77 Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 77 Saberhawks MH-60R Seahawk

Other Squadrons

Code Insignia Squadron Nickname Assigned Aircraft
HSM 51 Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 51 Warlords MH-60R Seahawk


Carrier Strike Group Five was originally established during World War II on April 25, 1944 by Rear Admiral Frank Wagner as Carrier Division Five when he assumed command aboard USS Wasp and USS Hornet in Pearl Harbor. Rear Admiral J.J. Clark succeeded Wagner and commanded the unit through 12 months of sustained combat operations in the Western Pacific and waters surrounding Japan, working for both Third Fleet (ADM William Halsey) and Fifth Fleet (ADM Raymond Spruance). This included participation in the First and Second Philippine Sea Battles and the Iwo Jima and Okinawa campaigns.

Korean War

During the Korean War, Rear Admiral G.R. Henderson commanded Carrier Division Five and served as Commander, Task Force (CTF) 70 and 77 aboard USS Princeton (CV 37). Carrier Division Five moved back and forth between Yokosuka, Japan and the Korean Theater, serving as CTF 70 or 77 on multiple occasions.

Vietnam War

Prior to the Vietnam War, the location of Carrier Division Five moved between several Pacific ports and utilized rotating carriers from the West coast of the U.S. as its flagship. During the Vietnam War, 12 different commanders led Carrier Division Five and Task Force 77 in numerous combat deployments to the Vietnam War zone. Beginning in 1964 Carrier Group Five was permanently deployed to the Western Pacific and dual-hatted CTF 70/77, homeported at Naval Air Station Cubi Point in the Philippines.

Carrier Division Five became Carrier Group Five on June 30, 1973, and in October, Carrier Group Five arrived in Yokosuka, Japan aboard USS Midway marking the first forward deployment of a complete Carrier Task Group in a Japanese port (the associated Air Wing, CVW-5, moved into Atsugi, Japan this same year). Carrier Group Five shifted its forward deployed location from Cubi Point, Republic of Philippines to Yokosuka in mid-1991. Midway remained in Yokosuka for 18 years and was relieved by USS Independence (CV 62) on September 11, 1991.

Afghanistan and Iraq

In the lead up to the Gulf War, Rear Admiral Daniel March, Commander, Carrier Group 5, became Commander, Task Force 154 (Battle Force Zulu), part of Naval Forces Central Command. The Task Force led four carriers (USS Midway (CV 41), USS Ranger (CV 61), USS America (CV 66), and USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) in the Arabian Sea/Persian Gulf during Operation Desert Storm.

On August 11, 1998, USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) relieved Independence as the Carrier Group Five flagship. After the terrorist attacks in New York City and Washington, DC, on September 11, 2001, the Kitty Hawk Battle Group was ordered to deploy to the Indian Ocean and was later involved in combat missions against the Taliban and Al Qaida in Afghanistan. The ships got underway again in January 2003 with orders to deploy to the Persian Gulf as part of the build-up of military forces in the area in preparation for the war against the regime of Saddam Hussein in Iraq. Kitty Hawk arrived on station late February/early March and from March 20 on, participated in air strikes against targets in Iraq as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

USS George Washington (CVN 73) relieved Kitty Hawk on September 25, 2008. Carrier Group Five was renamed Carrier Strike Group Five October 1, 2004.

Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief

In 2011, Carrier Strike Group 5 participated in two Humanitarian Assistance operations, Operation Tomodachi in Japan and support to Thailand during their worst flooding in 50 years.[3]

On November 11, 2013 George Washington Carrier Strike Group (GWCSG) was ordered to the Republic of the Philippines in response to Super Typhoon Haiyan/Yolanda. The strike group, commanded by Rear Adm. Mark Montgomery, was assigned as Joint Force Maritime Component Commander for the disaster relief which was named Operation Damayan, and the force was assigned to Joint Task Force 505, commanded by Marine Corps Lt. Gen. John E. Wissler. For Operation Damayan, the strike group included USS George Washington (CVN 73), six surface combatants, 23 helicopters from three squadrons, three Military Sealift Command ships and two amphibious ships all crewed by 8,000 sailors, The strike group concentrated its relief efforts on the islands of Leyte and Samar and the cities of Tacloban and Guiuan, delivering nearly 1,000,000 pounds of food, water and medical supplies and transporting more than 2,500 displaced personnel. Yolanda had reached speeds up to 195 miles per hour (mph), gusts up to 235 mph and landfall waves of 50 feet. According to the Philippine government’s national disaster risk reduction and management council, the super typhoon impacted more than 4.2 million people across 36 provinces in the Philippines.

Hull swap

On 14 January 2014, the U.S. Navy announced that the complex refueling and overhaul at Newport News Shipbuilding shipyard in Newport News, Virginia. Carrier Air Wing Five will continue to be assigned to Carrier Strike Group Five.[5]


Group commanders since 2000 have included:
  • Rear Admiral Robert Willard   (September 2000 – September 2001)[6][7]
  • Rear Admiral Steve Kunkel   (September 2001 – February 2003)[7][8]
  • Rear Admiral Matthew Moffit   (March 2003 – May 2003)[9]
  • Rear Admiral James Kelly   (July 2003 – July 2005)[10]
  • Rear Admiral Douglas McClain   (July 2005 – February 2007)[10][11]
  • Rear Admiral Richard Wren   (February 2007 – December 2008)[11][12]
  • Rear Admiral Kevin Donegan   (December 2008 – May 2010)[13]
  • Rear Admiral Dan Cloyd   (May 2010 – April 2011)[14]
  • Rear Admiral J. R. Haley   (April 2011 – January 2013)[15]
  • Rear Admiral Mark Montgomery   (January 2013 – October 2014)[16]
  • Rear Admiral John Alexander   (October 2014 – Present)[17]

Current force

Surface Combatants

Fixed-wing aircraft

Rotary wing aircraft


  1. ^ "Carrier Strike Group Five". Navy Data. U.S. Navy Outlets. 2013. Retrieved 30 December 2011. 
  2. ^ "The Carrier Strike Group". Navy Data. U.S. Navy. 2013. Retrieved 1 November 2013. 
  3. ^ a b "Carrier Strike Group 5". Navy Data. U.S. Navy. 2013. Retrieved 1 November 2013. 
  4. ^ "Carrier Air Wing Composition" (PDF). US Navy. Tailhook Association. Retrieved 30 December 2006. 
  5. ^ "Navy Aircraft Carrier Moves Underscore Pacific Rebalance Strategy". NNS140114-15. U.S. Pacific Fleet Public Affairs. January 14, 2014. Retrieved 2014-01-14. 
  6. ^ Journalist Daniel Bristol (7 June 2006). "Vitale Assumes Command of TRCSG". NNS060607-16. USS Theodore Roosevelt Public Affairs. Retrieved 2011-09-03. 
  7. ^ a b "Norfolk Carrier Strike Group 2 Gets A New Commander". U.S. Naval Academy Foundation. 18 September 2007. Retrieved 2011-09-03. 
  8. ^ "Flag Officer Assignment". News Release # 346-09. U.S. Department of Defense. 19 May 2009. Retrieved 2011-09-03. 
  9. ^ "Flag Officer Assignment". News Release # 158-09. U.S. Department of Defense. 11 March 2009. Retrieved 2011-09-03. 
  10. ^ a b "Carrier Strike Group 2 Welcomes New Commander". NNS100729-27. U.S. Navy. 29 July 2010. Retrieved 2010-08-26. 
  11. ^ a b "Rear Admiral Gregory M. Nosal". Command Info: Commander Carrier Strike Group Two. Carrier Strike Group Two. 2012. Retrieved 2012-03-22. 
  12. ^ Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Samantha Thorpe, USN (1 March 2013). "Carrier Strike Group 2 Holds Change of Command". NNS130301-19. USS George H.W. Bush Public Affairs. Retrieved 2013-03-01. 
  13. ^ "Flag Officer Assignment". News Release # 138-10. U.S. Department of Defense. 23 February 2010. Retrieved 2013-11-01. 
  14. ^ "Flag Officer Assignment". News Release # 00120810. U.S. Department of Defense. 8 December 2010. Retrieved 2013-11-01. 
  15. ^ "Flag Officer Announcements". News Release # 177-12. U.S. Department of Defense. 13 March 2012. Retrieved 2013-11-01. 
  16. ^ "United States Navy Biography". News Release # 613. U.S. Navy. 2 July 2013. Retrieved 2013-11-01. 
  17. ^ "Forward-Deployed Carrier Strike Group Welcomes New Commander". NNS141007-06. U.S. Navy. 7 October 2014. Retrieved 2014-10-09. 

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