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News Stories

USS Oak Hill Departs Brest, France

by USS Wasp Public Affairs
03 June 2024

The Harper’s Ferry-class amphibious landing dock USS Oak Hill (LSD 51) departed Brest, France after a scheduled four-day port visit, June 3, 2024.

Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment.
BREST, France (June 3, 2024) Lance Cpl. Warembourg, assigned to the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC), provides security from the bridge wing of Harper’s Ferry-class amphibious landing dock USS Oak Hill (LSD 51) while the ship’s Sailors perform sea and anchor detail on the fo’c’sle during Oak Hill’s departure from Brest, France, June 3, 2024. Oak Hill is conducting operations in U.S. Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Justin Kemble)
Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment.
240603-N-FV545-1160
BREST, France (June 3, 2024) Lance Cpl. Warembourg, assigned to the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC), provides security from the bridge wing of Harper’s Ferry-class amphibious landing dock USS Oak Hill (LSD 51) while the ship’s Sailors perform sea and anchor detail on the fo’c’sle during Oak Hill’s departure from Brest, France, June 3, 2024. Oak Hill is conducting operations in U.S. Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Justin Kemble)
VIRIN: 240603-N-FV545-1160

Oak Hill Sailors and Marines, as well as the embarked 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC) and Sailors assigned to Beach Masters Unit (BMU) 2 visited with French Navy counterparts assigned to amphibious assault ship FS Mistral (L9013) while in Brest. Together, U.S. and French forces planned and participated in a variety of events celebrating the 80th anniversary of the D-Day landings and Operation Overlord, the decisive World War II campaign that brought Allied troops ashore in nearby Normandy.

Cmdr. Jason Nowell, Oak Hill’s commanding officer, visited the Mistral to meet Capt. Olivier Roussille, Mistral’s commanding officer, for a concept of operations (CONOPS) brief about the D-Day celebration.

Oak Hill is conducting operations in U.S. Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment.
BREST, France (June 3, 2024) Sailors assigned to the Harper’s Ferry-class amphibious landing dock USS Oak Hill (LSD 51) heave a line attached to a tug boat during sea and anchor detail on the fo’c’sle during the ship’s departure from Brest, France, June 3, 2024. Oak Hill is conducting operations in U.S. Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Justin Kemble)
Oak Hill is conducting operations in U.S. Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment.
240603-N-FV545-1124
BREST, France (June 3, 2024) Sailors assigned to the Harper’s Ferry-class amphibious landing dock USS Oak Hill (LSD 51) heave a line attached to a tug boat during sea and anchor detail on the fo’c’sle during the ship’s departure from Brest, France, June 3, 2024. Oak Hill is conducting operations in U.S. Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Justin Kemble)
VIRIN: 240603-N-FV545-1124

“I worked alongside Roussille and our staffs to coordinate all of the events our ships are executing,” said Nowell. “We all have the same goals, safely and smartly executing our evolutions to commemorate and honor the 80th anniversary of the Allied landings in Normandy. It’s important we work together for this event. Our demonstrations ensure people don’t just read about these brave historic events in books—they see and experience it.  Equally important, we continue to strengthen our partnership with France.”

The events Sailors and Marines will participate in during the D-Day celebration at Normandy include ceremony, landing craft, utility (LCU) demonstrations, and a commemorative hike.

Tours for French and U.S. Sailors and Marines were conducted aboard both Oak Hill and Mistral. In addition to these tours, the Mistral crew hosted a high-intensity interval training competition aboard the French ship, allowing not only for a friendly test of strength, but also creating bonds and strengthening relations between countries.

“I don’t think I’ll have a chance like this again,” said Information Specialist 2nd Class Bretburton Clark, one of Oak Hill’s competitors. “The course was fun, but it destroyed us. Teaming up with [the French Navy,] I got to talk to them and make friends with them. I learned so much about their culture.”

France is a long-standing NATO ally of the United States, dating back to NATO’s inception in 1949. The celebration provided a chance to further strengthen the U.S.’s relationship with France, while allowing the Sailors and Marines to memorialize World War II and a cultural exchange.

Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment.
BREST, France (June 3, 2024) Boatswains Mate 3rd Class Cheyanne Armenta, assigned to the Harper’s Ferry-class amphibious landing dock USS Oak Hill (LSD 51), conducts a time check over the 1MC in the pilot house during sea and anchor detail aboard Oak Hill prior to the ship’s departure from Brest, France, June 3, 2024. Oak Hill is conducting operations in U.S. Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Justin Kemble)
Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment.
240603-N-FV545-1064
BREST, France (June 3, 2024) Boatswains Mate 3rd Class Cheyanne Armenta, assigned to the Harper’s Ferry-class amphibious landing dock USS Oak Hill (LSD 51), conducts a time check over the 1MC in the pilot house during sea and anchor detail aboard Oak Hill prior to the ship’s departure from Brest, France, June 3, 2024. Oak Hill is conducting operations in U.S. Naval Forces Europe area of operations as part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (WSP ARG)-24th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) Special Operations Capable (SOC). The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) support high-end warfighting exercises while demonstrating speed and agility operating in a dynamic security environment. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Justin Kemble)
VIRIN: 240603-N-FV545-1064
 

D-Day was an amphibious and airborne assault on the beaches of Normandy during World War II conducted by United States, United Kingdom and other Allied forces to liberate France from Nazi-Germany control on June 6, 1944.

Oak Hill deployed from Norfolk, Virginia, May 22, and have conducted training, exercises, and operations to support maritime stability and security in defense of U.S., Allied, and partner interests.

Oak Hill is part of the Wasp Amphibious Readiness Group (WSP ARG)-24th MEU (SOC), operating in the Atlantic Ocean.

The WSP ARG-24th MEU (SOC) is comprised of its flagship namesake, the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD 1), San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock ship USS New York (LPD 21), Oak Hill, and the embarked 24th MEU (SOC).

The 24th MEU (SOC) is a Marine Air-Ground Task Force (MAGTF) with a command element, Aviation Combat Element (Medium Marine Tiltrotor Squadron 365 (Reinforced), Ground Combat Element (Battalion Landing Team 1/8), and Logistics Combat Element (Combat Logistics Battalion 24).

For more than 80 years, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-U.S. Naval Forces Africa (NAVEUR-NAVAF) has forged strategic relationships with our Allies and partners, leveraging a foundation of shared values to preserve security and stability.


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