Last USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) Deployment

Not long ago the JFK was put out to pasture, and now the last of the conventionally-powered supercarriers is on her last deployment:

USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) departs Truman Bay, Fleet Activates Yokosuka, Japan, on her summer deployment. Kitty Hawk is the Navy’s only overseas-based aircraft carrier and operates from Yokosuka, Japan. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Stephen Rowe.

The Kitty Hawk is the oldest ship in the fleet, a title she inherited when USS Independence (CV 62) was decommissioned in 1998. Normally, only the oldest ship in the Navy gets to fly the First Navy Jack, but in 2002 all ships were ordered to fly the Jack for the duration of the War on Terror.

Murdoc doesn’t know what the next-oldest ship in the fleet is, but he’s sure a reader does. Let us know in the comments section.

More Kitty Hawk coverage by Pinch over at Defense Tech.


  1. Shipmates, Well…. Far be it from me to criticise a serving sailor, but our young seaman has his facts wrong. USS Constitution is the oldest ship in the fleet, being in continuous service for the better part of 200 years. That singular fact is driven into the skull of every new recruit, and to every visitor at her berth in Boston. Kittyhawk may be the oldest carrier afloat, but Constitution is the oldest commissioned Navy vessel in the fleet. For what it’s worth… Respects,

  2. Ya know, the moment I saw the words ‘oldest ship afloat’ I just knew someone was going to mention the Constitution.

  3. Oldest ship? What about all those sub tenders. I remember seeing some 40-50 year old ships on active duty in the 80’s.

  4. Brian: The old tenders were Decom’d or transfered to USNS… I was talking birdfarms. Not wooden sailing vessels or commisioned vessels setting on the bottom… One of the gators will be oldest active serving (vice cerimonial) vessel when KH and ‘E’ goes.

  5. The USS Constitution puts all current ships to shame. She served active duty for some 95 years – never boarded, never defeated, and kicked more ass then current ship afloat. Personally, one of the most beautiful sights in the world must be the USS Constitution under full sail. Now that is a sight I would travel round the world to see….