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YOKOSUKA, Japan - The Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Columbia (SSN 771) arrived in Yokosuka, May 4, for a routine visit during its deployment to region.
The visit strengthens the already positive alliance between the U.S. and Japan through the crew's interaction with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force. It also demonstrates the U.S. Navy's commitment to regional stability and security in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations.
"Our continued presence in the Pacific is part of our commitment to our allies and partners," said Cmdr. David Edgerton, commanding officer. "We continue to learn from each to bolster our core competencies in the undersea environment. Our visit to Yokosuka will allow us to interact with our operational commander and with our Japanese counterparts. Having completed most of our six months deployment, the crew continues to operate at the highest level of readiness and proficiency. Columbia remains ready for all availability period."
With a crew of approximately 150, Columbia will conduct a multitude of missions and maintain proficiency of the latest capabilities of the submarine fleet.
"The crew of Columbia is excited to experience the Japanese culture and further relationships with this key ally of strategic importance," said Senior Chief Electronic Technician Jason Karns, chief of the boat. "In addition, our time in Yokosuka will provide time for our crew to communicate with loved ones at home."
Measuring more than 360 feet long and weighing more than 6,000 tons when submerged, Columbia is one of the stealthiest submarines in the world. This submarine is capable of executing anti-submarine warfare, anti-surface warfare, strike, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance.
"I'm looking forward to enjoying some fresh sushi and amazing ramen and some fresh air," said Sonar Technician Submarines 2nd Class Christopher Scott Mullen. "I'm also looking forward to talking to my family, it's always exiting to hear their reactions when I get to call and tell them I'm in a different part of the world."
Columbia is homeported in Pearl Harbor, currently on a six-month deployment to the Indo-Pacific.