1990 Command Narrative

07 July 1991
By Direction
Commanding Officer, USS WADDELL (DDG 24)


Command Composition and Organization - USS WADDELL began 1990 assigned to Destroyer Squadron 13.  On 01 March 1990, WADDELL was assigned to Destroyer Squadron 13.  On 01 March 1990, WADDELL was reassigned to Destroyer Squadron 33.  WADDELL remained a permanent member of COMDESRON 33 throughout 1990.  WADDELL's Commanding Officer throughout 1990 was Commander Robert E. Smith, USN.  WADDELL is permanently homeported in San Diego, California.

On 01 January 1990, WADDELL was in a holiday leave/upkeep period making preparations for upcoming Law Enforcement Operations (LEO) and Middle East Force Exercises (MEFEX).  On 19 Jasnuary 1990, WADDELL was underway enroute to her LEO OPAREA off the coast of Baja California.  Many vessels of interest were interrogated and several were boarded by the assigned Coast Guard Law Enforcement Detachment (LEDET).

On 01 February 1990, WADDELL returned to San Diego for the weekend and was underway again from 04-08 February 1990 for Middle East Force Exercise (MEFEX) 90-2, during which WADDELL and USS CROMMELIN (FFG-37) participated as Orange Forces against USS VANDEGRIFT (FFG-48) and USS REID (FFG-30) as Blue Forces.  Embarked in WADDELL for MEFEX 90-2 was COMDESRON 13.  On 05 February 1990, WADDELL participated with USS VANDEGRIFT and USS REID in an AAW-11-SF, Anti-Ship Missile Defense (FIRING) Exercise.  WADDELL expended one SM-1 MR missile in a successful acquisition and destruction of a BQM-34S target drone, simulating a Silkworm missile.  On 08 February 1990, WADDELL returned to port for the evening and was underway once again from 09-12 February 1990 for planeguarding duties with the USS INDEPENDENCE (CV-62).  The ship remained inport from 13 February - 11 March 1990.

During FIREX-1, 12-14 March 1990, WADDELL completed a two day Naval Gun Fire Support (NGFS) qualification in addition to providing spotter services for U.S. Marines training on San Clemente Island.  WADDELL returned to San Diego 14 March 1990 for a two week period in order to make preparations for MEFEX 90-3 and the second LEO of 1990.  During MEFEX 90-3, 27-29 March 1990, COMDESRON 23 commended WADDELL on her NGFS capabilities after a successful gun firing exercise.  WADDELL returned to San Diego Harbor on 29 March 1990 to disembark COMDESRON 23 and his staff and then returned to sea later that evening for the SOCAL OP AREA to begin LEO.  Once again, WADDELL, with a LEDET from San Diego, was off the coast of Baja, California aggressively patrolling the assigned OP AREA from 30 March - 12 April 1990.

After Completing two weeks of a successful LEO, WADDELL deserved a little rest and relaxation.  WADDELL spent Easter weekend, for her first port visit of 1990, in Mazatlan, Mexico, 13-16 April 1990.  The entire crew enjoyed their visit to Mazatlan but on 17 April 1990, WADDELL was ready to go home to sunny San Diego.  WADDELL returned to San Diego on 19 April 1990 for a week to make final preparations for Kernel Usher 90-1.  Kernel Usher 90-1, 27 April - 09 May 1990, proved to be one of WADDELL's highlights in 1990.  Commander, Naval Surface Force Pacific commended WADDELL for "superb preparation and a job well done.  WADDELL has set the standard for Naval Gun Fire Support".  During Kernel Usher 90-1, WADDELL provided over 400 rounds of NGFS with "model accuracy and timeliness."  WADDELL returned to San Diego on 09 May 1990 for a brief stay at home before getting underway for MEFEX 90-4, 14-18 May 1990.  During MEFEX 90-4, COMDESRON 7 embarked as OCE in WADDELL.  After MEFEX 90-4, WADDELL remained inport making preparations for the upcoming Inspection and Survey (INSURV).

The month of June 1990 marked a climax for WADDELL's hard work and productivity during the first six months of 1990.  During the week of 04-08 June 1990, the Board of Inspection and Survey, Pacific team embarked in WADDELL and noted the following:  "The ship was found fit for further service."  "The ship's preparation and support for the UMI was excellent."  "The MK 68 GFCS was generally in excellent material condition."  "The deck equipment was in above average condition, in particular the boat davits."  The remaining portion of the month of June was spent inport as WADDELL entered a Planned Maintenance Availiability (PMA:  06 June - 10 August 1990) to correct and repair deficiencies found by the Board of Inspection and Survey and also to make preparations for the scheduled deployment in August.

The month of July was again spent inport San Diego, California grooming all weapons and communications equipment for the upcoming deployment to Central America.  The PMA period was also a good opportunity for WADDELL to send crewmembers to various Navy technical schools.

A change in the deployment schedule caused WADDELL to remain inport for the month of August with the exception of two brief underway periods.  On 14 August 1990, WADDELL was underway enroute to Seal Beach, California for a major weapons onload.  On 15 August 1990, WADDELL onloaded a full complement of projectiles, missiles, and small arms ammunition.  WADDELL completed the onload late that afternoon and got underway enroute to SOCAL OPAREA, specifically San Clemente Island.  On 16 August 1990, WADDELL spent the day off San Clemente Island for a NGFS requalification, achieving an outstanding score of 103.  WADDELL returned to San Diego in the evening of 16 August 1990 but got underway the next morning for a dependents cruise.  The ship remained inport from 18 August - 16 September 1990 for a pre-deployment leave and upkeep period.

The next underway period prior to deployment was a one day sea trial, 17 September 1990, to ensure all WADDELL's systems were fully operational and fine tuned for deployment.  WADDELL returned to port later that evening and had one more day inport to bid farewell to their loved ones before deploying on 19 September 1990 for Counter Narcotic, Detection and Monitoring Operations in the Eastern Pacific.  On 29 September 1990, WADDELL outchopped from the Pacific Fleet and chopped into the Atlantic Fleet and wasted no time getting initiated into the new task group organization with a superb display of air tracking, track correlation, and track hand off procedures.  WADDELL had once again presented an outstanding first impression to her superiors.

WADDELL spent the majority of October aggressively patrolling her assigned operational area against all suspected surface and air targets of interest with the highlight occurring on 14 October 1990.  WADDELL was a key player in a major counter narcotics operations which involved a number of DOD, U.S. law enforcement agencies and foreign authorities and was highly commended by the Task Group Commander.  WADDELL was not only a major asset for her air tracking prowess but led the Task Group in vessel boardings.  On 26 October 1990, WADDELL entered Rodman, Panama for a well deserved 5 day port visit.  Although travel was limited to certain areas in Panama due to recent political unrest, WADDELL crewmemebers made the most of their liberty and thoroughly enjoyed the port visit.  On 31 October 1990, WADDELL was underway again on orders to continue patrolling the Eastern Pacific against drug traffickers.

On 12 November 1990, WADDELL assumed the duties as Task Unit Commander for the Eastern Pacific in recognition of her proven performance, despite the fact that WADDELL was not the senior ship assigned to the area.  In addition to assuming duties as CTU 4.1.2, WADDELL assumed control of all air assets in the Eastern Pacific.  On 22 November 1990, WADDELL relinquished duties as CTU 4.1.2 to USS CROMMELIN (FFG-37) in preparation for WADDELL's transit of the Panama Canal.  On 24 November, WADDELL entered the Caribbean Sea enroute to Saint Thomas, Virgin Islands for a 5 day port visit.  The transit to the Virgin Islands was an historic event for the Warship, as it marked the WADDELL's first voyage through the Panama Canal and in the Caribbean Sea.  The port visit in Saint Thomas, 28 November - 03 December 1990, was a highlight of their tours for many crewmembers of WADDELL.

On 03 December 1990, WADDELL departed the Virgin Islands and began her long transit back to San Diego.  On 07 December 1990, WADDELL once again passed through the Panama Canal, spent the night in Rodman, Panama and refueled the following morning.  On 12 December 1990, USS KIRK (FF-1087) relieved WADDELL on station and WADDELL then out chopped from CTG 4.1.  WADDELL departed the South Eastern Pacific leaving behind an outstanding reputation and superb record of accomplishment.  The following are a few comments from Rear Admiral Lynch, Commander Task Group 4.1:  "The aggressive and innovative performance of WADDELL during three months of counter Narcotics Operations has been outstanding.  Your response to complex tasking, rapid adaptation to Caribbean Operations and superb control of assigned air assets all combined to provide a significant role in the war against illegal narcotics trafficking."  Rear Admiral William P. Leahy, Commander Joint Task Force Five, also commented that WADDELL's "approach to Counter Narcotics Operations has been outstanding.  Your air detection/monitoring activities provided a significant contribution to the interdiction of approximately 10.5 tons of cocaine at a clandestine airfield in Mexico."  On 21 December 1990, WADDELL arrived in San Diego greeted by a huge crowd of loved ones waiting on the pier.  A well deserved post deployment and holiday leave period through mid-January 1991.

Chronology - 1990

01-18 January Inport - San Diego, California
19 Jan - 01 February Underway - SOCAL OP AREA (Law Enforcement Operations)
02-03 February Inport - San Diego, California
04-08 February Underway - SOCAL OP AREA (MEFEX 90-2)
09-12 February Underway - SOCAL OP AREA )Planeguarding for USS INDEPENDENCE
13 Feb - 11 March Inport - San Diego, California
12-14 March Underway - SOCAL OP AREA (FIREX I and Spotter Services)
15-26 March Inport - San Diego, California
27-29 March Underway - SOCAL OP AREA (MEFEX 90-3)
30 Mar-12 April Underway -SOCAL OP AREA (Law Enforcement Operations)
13-16 April Inport - Mazatlan, Mexico (Port Visit)
17-19 April Underway - Enroute to San Diego, California
20-26 April Inport - San Diego, California
27 Apr-09 May Underway - SOCAL OP AREA (Kernal Usher 90-1)
10-13 May Inport - San Diego, California
14-18 May Underway -SOCAL OP AREA (MEFEX 90-4)
19 May-03 June Inport -San Diego, California
04-08 June Inport -San Diego, California (INSURV)
09 June-13 August Inport -San Diego, California (PRAV)
14 August Underway -Enroute to Seal Beach, California
15 August Inport -Seal Beach, California (Weapons Onload)
15-16 August Underway - SOCAL OP AREA (NGFS Requalification)
17 August Underway -SOCAL OP AREA (Dependent's Cruise)
18 Aug-16 September Inport -San Diego, California (Leave/Upkeep)
17 September Underway -SOCAL OP AREA (Sea Trials)
18 September Inport -San Diego, California
19Sept-25 October Underway -Deployment (Counter Narcotics Operations)
26-30 October Inport -Rodman, Panama (Port Visit)
31 Oct-27 November Underway -Eastern Pacific Ocean (Counter-Narcotics Operations)
28 Nov-02 December Inport -Saint Thomas, Virgin Islands (port Visit)
03-20 December Underway -Enroute to San Diego, California
21-31 December Inport -San Diego, California (Post Deployment/Holiday Leave Period)