Vandy Decommissions After 30 Years
The ship was named for Gen. Alexander Vandegrift, the 18th commandant of the Marine Corps and the first U.S. Marine to hold the rank of four-star general while on active duty. The 1st Marine Division was under command of Vandegrift during WWII where he led them to victory during the Battle of Guadalcanal, earning the Medal of Honor for his efforts.
Maj. Gen. Lawrence Nicholson, commander of the 1st Marine Division based at Camp Pendleton, was the keynote speaker during the somber decommissioning ceremony. The ship’s first commanding officer, retired Capt. Coneway, was also in attendance to speak about the ship’s accomplished history.
The ship returned from its final deployment last December to the U.S. 4th Fleet area of responsibility. As part of the counter-transnational organized crime mission Operation Martillo, USS Vandegrift patrolled the illicit trafficking routes in the waters off Central America, intercepting almost 20,000 pounds of cocaine.
USS Vandegrift is the 38th Oliver Hazard Perry class guided-missile frigate, and was commissioned on Nov. 24, 1984 in Seattle.