The guided-missile destroyer USS Spruance (DDG 111) departs Naval Base San Diego Oct. 16 on its maiden deployment to the Western Pacific region. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Rosalie Garcia)

SAN DIEGO - The guided-missile destroyer USS Spruance (DDG 111) departed Naval Base San Diego Oct. 16 on its maiden deployment to the Western Pacific region.

Spruance is a multi-mission ship designed to operate independently or with an associated strike group. While deployed, Spruance will conduct Theater Security Cooperation and maritime presence operations with partner nations.

"It is with great pride that we set sail after four years of hard work and effort to bring this ship to life," said Cmdr. George Kessler, Spruance commanding officer. "Although, it is with a heavy heart that we leave family, friends, and loved ones, I can think of no group of men and women with whom I would rather go to sea."

Spruance is the latest in the line of Arleigh Burke-class destroyers and was named in honor of Adm. Raymond A. Spruance, commander of Task Force 16 at the Battle of Midway in WWII, and leader of many of the pivotal naval battles that won the war in the Pacific. The ship helps provide deterrence, promote peace and security and preserve freedom of the seas when deployed.