Beach exercise

Beach exercise

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

The last voyage



We are camped along the river on the Naval Station in Mayport, FL.  This is a great location if you want to be at the ocean and watch the military and commercial traffic as it goes by.  It also a good stop on our way to the Good Sam Rally in Daytona.  We have found many times during our travels that when we stop in a location without any special reason other than it is a good place to stop, we discover that there is a special event that we did not know about taking place there. Today was one of those occasions.  

It started when I noticed that all four of the powerful Navy tractor tugs were leaving the harbor and waiting in the river entrance channel.  I grabbed the camera and joined others close to the waterfront.  I discovered that very shortly the USS Enterprise (CVN-65) was about to enter the harbor.  Now this would be a big thrill for me at any time, but this was a special arrival, as it was part of her last voyage as a commissioned US Navy vessel.  She is the longest naval vessel in the world and the second oldest US Naval vessel in service.  The three masted Frigate USS Constitution being the oldest. Sadly, she is destined for the scrap pile at the end of her service.  When decommissioned she will have served over 51 years.

The history of the USS Enterprise includes much of our naval activities for the last fifty years.  It was a real privilege to observe part of her last voyage into history.




















16 comments:

Wanderin' said...

We love watching the navy ships. If you see our grandson sailing by, wave! His ship has been known to cruise along that coast at times!

Margie and Roger said...

Where are you parking at the rally? We are in the LazyDays section, off site. I think we are #131.

Sue Bidniak said...

spectacular photos of the navy ship!!..talk about being in the right place at the right time!!

E Squared and Mui said...

What a neat "special occasion" -- I wonder what we'll see when we're there in December?

Karen and Al said...

How lucky you were to be there. It's sad the Enterprise is being scrapped though.

Janna and Mike said...

I agree with Sue--talk about being in the right place at the right time! Awesome!

Gail Houle said...

How very cool! We have friends that stay there all the time. I think it's their favorite park!

JerryC said...

The Big E. How sad she's headed for the scrap heap after such an outstanding record of service. Too bad no one wanted her for a museum or such.

Kenny And Angela's Adventure said...

What a neat site to see.Great pictures thanks.

Bob said...

Happy that you were there at the right time, but it's always a sad day when a ship is decommissioned.
A truly amazing piece of American history.

Paul and Marsha Weaver OCT. 17, 2009 said...

OUTSTANDING photos. What a thrilled to see the USS Enterprise pass by.

Peter + Beatrix said...

Wow, what a monster. Very impressive!

Elaine said...

wow talk about good timing...!!! wonderful pics..

Luci & Loree said...

What a neat thing to get to see! I saw her in '66-67, sometime there- in San Diego

Paul and Marti Dahl said...

Boy I wish I could have seen that, thanks for the pictures.

Odd that she still has most of her airplanes on deck they usually fly off before entering harbor.

You can say the taxpayers got their monies worth out of this ship, 51 years.

Just sad that she will be scrapped, just like her predecessor, the WWII era Enterprise.

Hopefully they carry the name to a newly built carrier.

Rick Doyle said...

Terrific photos of the Enterprise, Chuck. To me, this ship has always represented the 'aircraft carrier'.

It's sad to see it's being decommissioned now. I hope they build and name a new USS Enterprise some time.