USS Pasadena (SSN 752) arrives at Naval Base Point Loma, March 30. (U.S. Navy/MC1 Derek Stroop)

SAN DIEGO - The Los Angeles-Class fast attack submarine USS Pasadena (SSN 752) returned to her homeport in San Diego, March 30. Family and friends gathered pierside at Naval Base Point Loma to greet the crew as they returned from a six-month deployment to the Western Pacific region.

According to Cmdr. Ken Douglas, Pasadena's commanding officer, the submarine steamed more than 40,000 miles, completed two major missions vital to national security and operated forward with several partner nations to advance security interests in the Western Pacific region.

Douglas also described some of his personal experiences from the deployment.

"The completion of this deployment was the highlight of my 24-year naval career," said Douglas. "I could not be more proud of the crew and their performance. In the words of our forward deployed commander, Pasadena rose to every challenge and expertly completed multiple demanding submarine missions, excelling across all fronts."

Douglas added that a major goal during the deployment was training junior Sailors and getting them submarine warfare qualified. Out of a crew of 150 Sailors, 52 experienced their first deployment and 26 successfully qualified to wear the submarine warfare insignia during this time.

"It honestly feels pretty amazing," said Machinist Mate (Weapons) Fireman Jalen Wilson. "Getting my dolphins makes me feel like I am part of the Pasadena family now."

Over the course of the deployment, Pasadena enjoyed port visits to Japan, Guam and the Marshall Islands. This gave the crew a chance to experience the lifestyles and cultures of places located around the world. For some Sailors, it was their first time deploying on a submarine.

"I feel I have grown more mature as a person," said Electronics Technician (Submarines) 3rd Class Brian Martinez. "It's going to help me make rank in the future and help me be a better worker." While Douglas commended the accomplishments of his crew, he also highlighted the support his Sailors received from home during their deployment.

"My Sailors and I would like to thank all of our families and friends, as well as the local community, for their support throughout the past six months," said Douglas. "Sailors spend many long, lonely days at sea, and submarine Sailors even more so, with little to no communication with the outside world for many weeks and months at a time. The support of those back home is what kept us going during those times and allowed us to enjoy the successes we did."

Pasadena was commissioned in July 1991. Throughout its proud 20-year history, Pasadena has deployed to and conducted operations in every part of the Pacific Ocean, from the west coast of North and South America to Australia and the Persian Gulf.