January 18th, 2007 12:27 EST
U.S. Navy Decoms Trenton, Transfers to Indian Navy
NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- The amphibious transport dock ship USS Trenton (LPD 14), was decommissioned Jan. 17 in a ceremony at Naval Station Norfolk. Immediately following the decommissioning, Trenton was recommissioned and transferred to the Indian Navy, bearing the name INS Jalashwa.
The event marks the first time a U.S. Navy vessel has been transferred to the Indian navy.
“Trenton will continue to serve all the free nations of the world, just as she served the United States, as we expand ‘the 1,000-ship navy,’” said Rear Adm. Garry Hall, Commander, Amphibious Group 2.
In recent months, the crew of Trenton has been working alongside Indian sailors, training them to operate the ship efficiently and safely.
The commanding officer of Jalashwa, Indian Navy Capt. B.S. Ahluwalia, expressed his gratitude to the crew of Trenton, and praised their professionalism.
“Today’s transfer is a significant event in the growing relationship between our two countries and our two navies,” said Ahluwalia.
Commissioned in March 1971, Trenton took part in numerous humanitarian operations, including the evacuations of American civilians from Liberia in 1996 and from Lebanon in 2006. In addition, in 1991, Trenton was responsible for evacuating the U.S. and Soviet ambassadors and 193 foreign nationals from Somalia.
During Trenton’s final deployment, the ship took part in maritime security operations off the Somali coast of eastern Africa.
Trenton’s commanding officer, Cmdr. Samuel Norton, spoke proudly and fondly of his crew and time aboard the ship, saying that without such an outstanding crew, Trenton would not have been the same.
“It’s people that have made Trenton what she is today, and its people that will keep the memory of Trenton alive,” Norton said.
Trenton employed a crew of approximately 415 Sailors and could embark nearly 1,000 Marines.
The ship was a member of the Austin-class amphibious transport dock ship. The ship is 570 feet in length and displaces approximately 17,000 tons when fully loaded. The Austin-class currently is being replaced by the newer, more-modern San Antonio-class LPD.