The guided-missile destroyer USS Howard is scheduled to return to its San Diego home port from a seven-month deployment today.
The vessel and its crew of 300 took part in exercises off South Korea, served with the aircraft carrier USS George Washington, conducted anti-submarine operations and what the Navy calls "theater security cooperation events."
The deployment, which started Dec. 2, included a four-day visit to Manila in the Philippines.
"Howard represented the nation in the Seventh Fleet during exercises and operations while strengthening relationships with our allies and regional partners," said Cmdr. John Fay, the commanding officer. "It's satisfying to think of the successes we enjoyed and great to return home to family and friends."
The destroyer is named in honor of Marine Corps 1st Sgt. Jimmie E. Howard, a combat veteran of both Korea and Vietnam who was awarded the Medal of Honor, Silver Star and three Purple Hearts during his 27 years of service.
Following his retirement in 1972, he worked at a San Diego Veterans Affairs office and was an assistant football coach at Point Loma High School. He died in 1993 and is buried at Fort Rosecrans National Cemetery.