USS Vicksburg (CG-69) in the Atlantic Ocean in 2004.
|Namesake:||Battle of Vicksburg|
|Ordered:||25 February 1988|
|Builder:||Ingalls Shipbuilding, Pascagoula, Mississippi|
|Laid down:||30 May 1990|
|Launched:||7 September 1991|
|Acquired:||21 September 1992|
|Commissioned:||14 November 1992|
|Motto:||"Key to Victory"|
|Status:||SLEP (Service Life Extension Program)|
|Class and type:||Ticonderoga-class cruiser|
|Displacement:||Approx. 9,600 long tons (9,800 t) full load|
|Length:||567 feet (173 m)|
|Beam:||55 feet (16.8 meters)|
|Draft:||34 feet (10.2 meters)|
|Speed:||32.5 knots (60 km/h; 37.4 mph)|
|Complement:||30 officers and 300 enlisted|
|Sensors and |
|Aircraft carried:||2 × Sikorsky SH-60B or MH-60R Seahawk LAMPS III helicopters.|
USS Vicksburg (CG-69) is a Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruiser serving in the United States Navy. She is named for both the land Battle of Vicksburg fought during the American Civil War, and the city of Vicksburg, Mississippi.
Vicksburg was built by Ingalls Shipbuilding, at Pascagoula, Mississippi. Her keel was laid down on 30 May 1990, and she was launched on 7 September 1991. Vicksburg was sponsored by Tricia Lott, wife of United States Senator, Trent Lott. On 12 October 1991, Mrs. Lott christened CG-69 as Vicksburg. She was commissioned on 14 November 1992.
With her guided missiles and rapid-fire cannons, Vicksburg is capable of facing threats in the air, on the sea, ashore, and underneath the sea. She is also capable of carrying two SH-60 Sea Hawk Light Airborne Multi-Purpose System (LAMPS III) helicopters.
Vicksburg was originally named Port Royal, but was changed during construction. She is the only Ticonderoga-class vessel to have a formal name change. CG-73 was later named Port Royal.
The previous Vicksburg was a Cleveland-class light cruiser during and after World War II. Vicksburg's crest has two stars on the streamer in the eagle's beak representing the two battle stars awarded to her predecessor.
On her maiden cruise, Vicksburg was assigned to the USS Saratoga battle group, which was stationed off the coast of Montenegro. Vicksburg participated in Operation Deny Flight and Operation Provide Promise, serving as an airspace command and control platform. In May 1994, Vicksburg participated in NATO's "Dynamic Impact 94" exercise in the western Mediterranean, and in August 1994 Vicksburg joined Operation Able Vigil, helping to intercept Cuban migrants crossing the Florida Straits.
In March 2003, she was assigned to Naval Surface Group Two. On 16 February 2007, Vicksburg was awarded the 2006 Battle "E" award. . She was part of Carrier Strike Group Twelve, which was led until December 2012 by USS Enterprise (CVN-65).
The U.S. Navy was planning to retire Vicksburg along with eight other Ticonderoga class cruisers in fiscal year 2013 in line with U.S. Defense Department budget reductions. The ship was scheduled to be decommissioned on 31 March 2013. Language inserted into the FY13 House of Representatives Defense Bill retains Vicksburg and two other of her sister ships that were slated for decommissioning. Retaining the ships in the active fleet was not supported by the United States Secretary of Defense, and final outcome will be determined by the final FY13 Defense Bill negotiated with the United States Senate. Vicksburg and two other Ticonderoga-class cruisers were retained under the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013.
In 2014, the cruiser participated in Joint Warrior 14-2, a United Kingdom-led multinational exercise in British coastal waters. The training was designed to provide allied forces a multiwarfare environment to prepare for global operations. On 4 December 2014, Vicksburg departed Naval Station Mayport to relieve USS Leyte Gulf (CG-55) as the Standing NATO Maritime Group 2 flagship and to support theater security cooperation efforts in Europe.