Freedom-class LCS begins first deployment with 6th Fleet

By Audrey Decker / May 6, 2022 at 9:53 AM

A Freedom-class Littoral Combat Ship, the Sioux City (LCS-11), has deployed with U.S. 6th Fleet in support of allies and partners -- a first for the region.

The ship will operate in Europe and Africa, but the Navy did not give a specific location.

The deployment will give the Navy an opportunity to operate the LCS where it has never operated before, the service said yesterday.

“Sioux City’s deployment allows us to integrate the LCS’ unique operational capability into our already diverse fleet. The agility of Littoral Combat Ships allows them to operate in both near-shore and open-ocean environments, enhancing our ability to provide security and stability across the European theater,” Vice Adm. Gene Black, commander of U.S. 6th Fleet, said in the press release.

A detachment of two MH-60S Seahawk helicopters from the Sea Knights of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 22 supports the deployment, the Navy said.

In its fiscal year 2023 budget request, the Navy is decommissioning nine LCS -- all of which are the monohull Freedom variant.