In this file photo, USS Sampson (DDG 102) arrives in Guadalcanal Aug. 6 to take part in the island's commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the World War II battle there. (U.S. Navy photo)

SAN DIEGO - The guided-missile destroyer USS Sampson (DDG 102) is scheduled to return to San Diego Aug. 31 after a six-month independent deployment to the Western Pacific and U.S. Central Command areas of responsibility.

Sampson, commanded by Cmdr. Dwayne D. Ducommun, operated with partner nations in Southeast Asia during Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training (CARAT) exercises, Suez Canal escort operations, as well as assignments with the aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73). Sampson also took part in the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Guadalcanal celebration.

"I am very proud of the body of work and the effort of this crew for the last six months," Ducommun said. "As with every deployment, the highlight is returning home today to happy loving friends and families and a grateful nation. We are truly fortunate and look forward to our next challenge."

Sampson is the fourth U.S. destroyer named after Rear Admiral William Thomas Sampson, whose naval service lasted from 1857 until 1902, including command of the North Atlantic Station during the Spanish-American War in 1898.

Third Fleet leads naval forces in the Eastern Pacific from the West Coast of North America to the international date line and is responsible for providing realistic, relevant training necessary for an effective global Navy.