USS Ouellet (FF-1077) - 1980s


The USS Ouellet started the 1980's with a joint exercise called RIMPAC in Feb 1980. In March of that year she headed east to conduct training and deployment work ups with the USS Ranger and Battle Group Echo. In September she deployed with Battle Group 'E' to the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Oman for the Iranian Crisis. Christmas of that year was spent in Diego Garcia. Ouellet began her third major overhaul in February 1985. She received extensive upgrades to her gun mount, received CIWS, and SNAP II computers. In 1986 Ouellet was again preparing for a Western Pacific deployment. Ouellet deployed for her eighth time in April 1987. Ouellet deployed with fellow Pearl Harbor Ships USS Worden (CG-18) and USS Leftwich to join the USS Constellation CV-64 battle group known as "Battle Group Delta". Ouellet spent time in Subic Bay, Philippines before transiting the Straights of Malacca on the way to Diego Garcia, BIOT. When the USS Stark got hit by an Iraqi Exocet missile in May 1987, The Constellation and the battle group deployed to the North Arabian Sea, while the Ouellet went south to have port visits in St Denis, Reunion Island - which was a historic visit of sorts as no American Navy ship made a port call there in over 100 years - then off to Port Victoria, Seychelles. Ouellet then joined the rest of the battle group in the North Arabian sea in support of Operation Ernest Will. Ouellet was detached from Battle Group Delta and proceeded with the USS Cochrane (DDG-21) with port visits to Phuket, Thailand and Singapore. Ouellet then detached from the Cochrane and proceeded to Subic Bay, RPI where she had a 3 week stay before the battle group caught up and proceeded home with her. She returned to Pearl Harbor on 6 October 1987.

Ouellet started out 1988 with a special operation coordinated by the Coast Guard to capture the CHRISTINA M, a cargo vessel laden with over 12 tons of marijuana. Instead of regular overhaul, Ouellet spent most of 1988 in a Ship's Restricted Availability repairing and upgrading most of her systems. Following extensive training, Ouellet made her ninth deployment in mid December 1988,which she headed to Sea of Japan and the North Pacific Ocean. She returned on 26 May 1989 to turn around and prepare to get underway again in September 1989 for "Pacific Exercises 89" (PAC EX 89).

Upon return to Pearl Harbor in November 1989 she went into dry dock, refloating in February 1990. After extensive preparations and an exhaustive inspection cycle, Ouellet departed on August 1990 to Central America in support of law enforcement operations.

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