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.