History of USS Nimitz
USS Nimitz (CVN-68) is an aircraft carrier of the United States Navy, and the lead ship of her class. One of the largest warships in the world, she was laid down, launched, and commissioned as CVAN-68, "aircraft carrier, attack, nuclear powered", but she was later redesignated as CVN-68, "aircraft carrier, multi-mission, nuclear-powered", on 30 June 1975, as part of a fleet-wide realignment that year.
The ship was named after World War II Pacific fleet commander Chester W. Nimitz, USN, (1885–1966), who was the Navy's third fleet admiral. Nimitz had her homeport at Naval Station Norfolk until 1987, when she was relocated to Naval Station Bremerton in Washington (now part of Naval Base Kitsap). Following her Refueling and Complex Overhaul in 2001, her home port was changed to Naval Air Station North Island in San Diego County, California. The home port of Nimitz was again moved to Naval Station Everett in Washington in 2012.
In January 2015, Nimitz changed home port from Everett back to Naval Base Kitsap. With the inactivation of USS Enterprise in 2012 and decommissioning in 2017, Nimitz is now the oldest U.S. aircraft carrier in service, and the oldest serving aircraft carrier in the world.
British Phantoms on Deck, 1975
In 1975 during here shake down cruise, USS Nimitz welcomed onboard 3 British Phantoms from 892 Naval Air Squadron based at Leuchers. This would be the last time that British Phantoms operated from a US Navy Carrier and the first time from a nuclear US power carried.
Exert from Royal Navy 892 Squadron Book, kindly provided by the Fleet Air Arm Museum
"Week Commencing Sunday 7th September,
This week 3 aircraft were deployed to the USS Nimitz for 4 days along with a party of engineers with Lt Palmer. The aim was to operate with VMFA 333 and to participate in exercise Nimex on Wednesday and Thursday before disembarking Thursday afternoon.
The aircraft left Leuchars Monday afternoon, led by the CO, and were all recovered by 1800. On Tuesday VID's were flown developiung into 2 v 2 ACM and, using the tactics practised last week against the Hunter in the Squadron proved to have advantage overall. On Wednesday during exercise Nimex the Squadron flew CAP, complementing the Shamrocks, and provided defence of the ship under the control of USS South Carolina. On the last day 013 had a serious engine problem necessitating an engine change which could not be carried out on the ship. The decision to lighter the aircraft from Nimitz to Lee on Solent was taken and completed by Saturday night. Thursday also saw CAP being flown, in the south western approaches, during the morning not only by the detachment but also by 2 aircraft from Leuchars who had made use of Victor tankers. A great deal of flying was completed from Nimitz and it was mainly due to the very long hours worked by the engineering party keeping the servicable rate very high."