HERMITAGE CHRONOLOGY 1 MARCH 1969 to 1 MARCH 1970


1.  1 March - The ship prepared to move to Newport News for a three month overhaul, followed by drydocking in Baltimore, Maryland.

2.  12 March - 18 July - HERMITAGE underwent a four-month yard overhaul, receiving preservation and modernization from Horne Brothers Shipyard facilities in Newport News, Virginia and Maryland Shipbuilding and Drydocking Corporation in Baltimore, Maryland. 

3.  18 July - Underway for sea trials and transit to homeport, Little Creek, Virginia.

4.  24 July - Arrived Little Creek, Virginia.

5.  11 August- Departed Little Creek, Virginia for Refresher Training.

6.  16 August - Arrived at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, for three weeks Refresher Training.

7.  12 September - Underway for Little Creek, Virginia after completing Refresher Training.

8.  16 September - Arrived at Little Creek, Virginia.

9.  19 September - Change-of-Command Ceremony, in which Captain Wesley L. McDonald, USN relieved Captain Donald R. Jex, USN.  Ceremony was held aboard ship at Little Creek, Virginia.

10.  3 October - Commence ACTU training.

11.  24 October - AOTU training completed.

12.  17 November - Underway for gunnery exercises off the Virginia Capes.  Returned to homeport 26 November 1969.  

13.  5 February - Departed Little Creek for participation in OPERATION SPRINGBOARD and OPERATION/FIREX 70.

14.  1 March - HERMITAGE deployed to Caribbean participating in OPERATION SPRINGBOARD.

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NARRATIVE

Upon completion of "FIREX-69", HERMITAGE made preparations to move to Newport News, Virginia to begin a scheduled yard overhaul period.  The period established was four months in length and involved preservation and modernization in Newport News, Virginia and Baltimore, Maryland.

On 18 July 1969, HERMITAGE got underway from Baltimore, Maryland to commence an abbreviated period of sea trials.  Sea trials were conducted until 24 July, when HERMITAGE returned to her home port of Little Creek, Virginia.

One month after completion of the yard overhaul, HERMITAGE departed for the waters off Cuba to conduct "Refresher Training".  The rigorous training received by the crew of HERMITAGE during this three weeks exposure greatly enhanced the capability of the ship to meet its assigned commitments.  "Refresher Training" was climaxed with the successful completion of the final battle problem.  Immediately thereafter, HERMITAGE was underway for her home port of Little Creek, Virginia, arriving on 16 September 1969.

Three days after arriving in Little Creek, 19 September 1969, a Change-of-Command Ceremony was held at which Captain Wesley L. McDonald, USN, relieved Captain Donald R. Jex, USN, as Commanding Officer of HERMITAGE.

Less than one month after the Change-of-Command Ceremony, HERMITAGE entered into a second phase of readiness training.  From 3 October 1969 through 234 October 1969 shipriders from the Amphibious Operational Training Unit were embarked.  With the assistance of this training unit. HERMITAGE practiced her amphibious assault procedures.

The holiday season was spent in home port.  On 5 February 1970, after two and one-half months in port, HERMITAGE got underway to participate in OPERATION SPRINGBOARD.  The operational time afforded all units participating in SPRINGBOARD was invaluable as ti allowed HERMITAGE to successfully conduct almost all exercises essential to ensure maximum readiness.


From scrapbook compiled by Michael Sheehy. Courtesy of C.J. and Julene DeHart.


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