CG 61 | USS MONTEREY
USS MONTEREY was built at Bath Iron Works, launched on 23 October 1988, conducted her first sea trials in November, 1989, and was commissioned in Mayport, Florida on 16 June 1990. It is the fourth ship to bear the name MONTEREY in the U.S. Fleet.
USS MONTEREY returned in January 1994 from a six month deployment to the Mediterranean Sea and Indian Ocean with the USS AMERICA joint task Group (JTG). While deployed, JTG ships supported a variety of national, NATO and United Nations missions, including participation in Operations Deny Flight, Provide Promise and Sharp Guard in the Adriatic Sea off Bosnia-Herzegovina, Southern Watch in the Red Sea, and UNOSOM II (Continue Hope) in the Indian Ocean off the coast of Somalia. The ships of the JTG also participated in the bi-lateral U.S./Spanish exercise Poopdeck 94, off the coast of Spain in mid-January, before conducting visits to various Spanish ports. Poopdeck is an annual bi-lateral exercise in which aircraft and ships of Task Force 60 test the air defenses of Spain while defending against offensive strikes led by Spanish aircraft directed at Task Force 60 ships. Inclement weather precluded full airwing participation in the exercise, and most air operations were canceled for Poopdeck '94. USS MONTEREY provided duties as escort during the exercise.
USS MONTEREY departed its homeport of Mayport, FL, on August 25, 1996, to relieve USS MISSISSIPPI (CGN 40) in the Adriatic Sea as the U.S. cruiser responsible for air surveillance off the coast of Bosnia. Once in the Adriatic, MONTEREY assumed the duties of Redcrown, where it was responsible for all air surveillance and aircraft control in the Adriatic Sea in direct support of NATO operations Deny Flight and Sharp Guard. During the six-month deployment, MONTEREY also had roles in operations Provide Promise, Southern Watch, Decisive Edge, and Decisive Endeavor in the Mediterranean and Adriatic Seas and the Arabian Gulf. MONTEREY also participated in Exercise Infinite Courage, and the multinational exercises Bright Star and Final Courage.
While en route to a post-exercise port visit, MONTEREY responded to a distress call from an Austrian sailing vessel; one of whose crew members had suffered a severe head injury that required immediate medical attention. MONTEREY's next mission was to escort USS AMERICA to the Arabian Gulf in support of Operation Southern Watch and enforcement of U.N. sanctions against Iraq. Shortly thereafter, AMERICA and MONTEREY were recalled back to the Adriatic Sea to support Operation Joint Endeavor and NATO troop insertions into Bosnia-Herzegovina as the Dayton Peace Accords went into effect.
During the transit, MONTEREY answered another distress call by a U.S. sailing vessel, which was being fired upon by Eritrea and Yemen forces during their conflict over disputed islands in the Red Sea. MONTEREY also joined forces with a the Russian RNS ADMIRAL KUZNETSOV (CV 063) battle group for two days of exercises January 21-22, 1996. The ships made port calls at Trieste, Ancona and Naples, Italy; Corfu, Souda Bay, Crete, Greece; and Antalya, Turkey, before returning home on February 24, 1996.
USS MONTEREY arrived at its new home port of Norfolk on May 10, 1996 as part of the Atlantic Fleet's reorganization of its forces. The guided missile cruiser then began an 11-month maintenance overhaul on June 19 at Newport News Shipbuilding and Drydock Inc. in Newport News, VA.
USS MONTEREY served as the U.S. Flagship for U.S. Navy units participating in the Atlantic phase of the UNITAS 2001, which was hosted by the Uruguayan Navy. UNITAS 2001 focused on high-tech surface, air and under-sea naval training exercises designed to train the force in multinational coalition operations, improve force interoperability and demonstrate hemispheric defense. The exercises were based on realistic world scenarios requiring the participating ships to operate as a combined multi-national task force.
USS MONTEREY took part from January 12 through February 4, 1998, in Joint Task Force Exercise 98-1 as part of the USS JOHN C. STENNIS (CVN 74) Carrier Battle Group (CVBG). This exercise, which included participation by more than 30,000 service members from all branches of the armed forces, was designed to meet the requirements for quality, realistic, intensive training to fully prepare U.S. forces for joint operations. The JOHN C. STENNIS CVBG and WASP ARG were to depart for a scheduled six-month deployment the following month, and the JTFEX was to serve as the final certification on their readiness to deploy. This was to be the first deployment for JOHN C. STENNIS.
USS MONTEREY deployed as part of the JFK Battle Group to the Arabian Gulf in 1999.
As part of the USS GEORGE WASHINGTON (CVN 73) Carrier Battle Group (CVBG), and in response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, USS MONTEREY set sail in support of defense and humanitarian efforts off the coast of New York.
The coat of arms is emblazoned upon a white oval enclosed by a blue
collar edged on the outside with gold rope and inscribed with the words
USS MONTEREY above and CG61 below in gold letters.