In this file photo, Sailors man the rails aboard USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG 108) as the ship arrives in Busan, Republic of Korea, in April. (U.S. Navy/MCC Wendy Wyman)

SAN DIEGO - The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG 108) will return to San Diego, Oct. 20, from an independent deployment to the Western Pacific.

Deployed since March, the ship and crew of more than 300 Sailors, assigned to Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 21, conducted various presence operations and goodwill activities with partner nations.

"I could not be more proud of our Sailors for the dedication, sacrifice, and passion that they demonstrated throughout our entire deployment," said Wayne E. Meyer's commanding officer, Cmdr. Randy J. Van Rossum. "They proudly served their Navy and are now returning to some well-deserved rest and relaxation with their friends and families."

Detachment three from the Blue Hawks of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 78 was embarked aboard Wayne E. Meyer.

The Blue Hawks flew more than 820 hours with two MH-60R aircraft in support of a wide range of missions including anti-submarine warfare, surface warfare, medical evacuations, and vertical replenishments, and participated in several international exercises.

"Our sailors have a lot to be proud of," said Lt. Cmdr. Christine Fix, the officer in charge of HSM-78 detachment three. "Their hard work and dedication throughout this deployment have allowed us to support the Wayne E. Meyer team in meeting every mission and operational tasking with two ready, mission capable aircraft and well-trained and professional aircrew. This has been a challenging and rewarding deployment for all of us."

HSM-78 was established March 1, 2012 at Naval Air Station North Island, Calif. as one of the Navy's newest MH-60R squadrons. HSM-78 is currently assigned to Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 2, attached to the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76).

The ship also participated in community service activities in every port of call, to include activities ranging from visiting international centers for the elderly to beautifying local parks. These activities involved more than 50 members of the command and helped garner cooperation and good relations between the U.S. Navy and partner nations.

Wayne E. Meyer is named after Rear Adm. Wayne E. Meyer., who is regarded as the "Father of Aegis." He retired from the United States Navy in 1985 as the deputy commander for weapons and combat systems with Naval Sea Systems Command, and ordnance officer of the Navy.

Wayne E. Meyer is homeported in San Diego and is part of Naval Surface Forces, U.S. Pacific Fleet and U.S. 3rd Fleet.

U.S. 3rd Fleet leads naval forces in the Eastern Pacific from the West Coast of North America to the international date line and provides the realistic, relevant training necessary for an effective global Navy.