4,000 Sailors and Marines return to Norfolk following 7 month deployment

NORFOLK, Va. - The Bataan Amphibious Ready Group (BAT ARG) returned to Naval Station Norfolk and Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story Saturday after a seven month deployment.

While deployed, the BAT ARG/24 MEU team, aboard USS Bataan (LHD 5), USS Mesa Verde (LPD 19) and USS Carter Hall (LSD 50), conducted maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet areas of operation, according to Naval Station Norfolk.

"We had Marines, Sailors, and ships deployed across the 5th and 6th Fleet areas of operation, provided support to European, Africa, and Central Commands, and supported named operations in Syria, Yemen, and Libya. These young men and women executed their missions with professionalism and excellence. They have a lot to be proud of and are certainly excited to be coming home in the wake of such success," said Col. Ryan Rideout, commander, 24th MEU.

The ARG traveled a total of 110,000 nautical miles, conducted more than 4,000 flight hours, and completed 40 replenishment-at-sea during the deployment.

"We are extremely proud of what our Sailors and Marines have accomplished during this deployment," said Capt. Larry LeGree, commodore, Amphibious Squadron Eight (PHIBRON 8). "We are all ready to return home to our loved ones and looking forward to some well-deserved time off."