From U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa/U.S 6th Fleet Public Affairs
ROTA, Spain (NNS) -- The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) departed Naval Station Rota, Spain, on July 22 to begin her third forward-deployed patrol in support of ballistic missile defense of Europe and demonstrate the U.S. commitment to collective defense of allies and partners under Operation Atlantic Resolve.
Donald Cook's forward presence in the Mediterranean and Black Seas, and the ship's participation in theater exercises and port visits with allies and partners will contribute to NATO's overarching efforts toward regional stability.
"These ships in Rota are always ready. They're on a ready for sea notice all the time. It says something about the resilience of the crew, and we're out, ready to meet the mission." - Cmdr. Charles Hampton, USS Donald Cook commanding officer
Donald Cook's second patrol, completed this past April, included underway engagements with French, Ukrainian and Turkish naval forces, as well as port visits to Romania, Bulgaria and Israel.
On its first forward deployed patrol, from March to July 2014, Donald Cook's patrol also included engagements during port visits in Constanta, Romania, where the crew hosted Romanian President Traian Bsescu.
U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied, joint, and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.