Seen off West Seattle: Aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan

First we got a note from Amanda asking which aircraft carrier is passing West Seattle right now; while we tried to find out, without even asking the question publicly, we received the photo above from Thom, who identified it as CVN-76, the carrier USS Ronald Reagan. We last featured it here in January 2012 as it arrived for what was described at the time as a year of maintenance.

ADDED 4:57 PM: Amanda also shared a photo. We haven’t figured out yet what the Ronald Reagan is heading out for – but we did find a bit of information saying the USS John C Stennis is due back in Bremerton later this month, so we’ll be watching for that sighting off Alki and Beach Drive.

39 Replies to "Seen off West Seattle: Aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan"

  • Jeb Duke March 9, 2013 (5:13 pm)

    The Navy will announce when it wants to, where the USS Ronald Reagan is heading, otherwise it is none of our business to know. Remember the slogan in World War 2 that said, “Loose lips sink ships”.

    • WSB March 9, 2013 (5:28 pm)

      Few secrets any more – ships such as the Ronald Reagan have Facebook pages and Twitter accounts as well as websites. I’m just looking around to verify that this isn’t deployment, which I’m pretty sure it isn’t; the farewells are usually well-publicized events with TV on hand, etc. The carriers that are at Bremerton often head out for trials/training large and small.

  • Megan March 9, 2013 (5:59 pm)

    Regardless of what they’re doing; it’s a private matter. I personally know the schedule because my husband is on that ship, but it’s imperative that people keep their information to themselves. Words and rumors travel quickly and it would be devastating if our enemies knew where our military was at all times. It makes us vulnerable. So please be intelligent and if you know what is going on, keep it to yourself. Civilians aren’t told the schedule for a reason, let’s keep it that way and keep our sailors safe.

  • 3 March 9, 2013 (6:47 pm)

    Seriously people? If its such a freaking secret how about arrive at night not the nicest day so far this year cruising past Alki with 4,000 people watching. I was there and saw the sailors standing on deck it was an awesome site. Sounds like someone is aware of something going down. Good luck with your campaign to keep it ‘secret’ in the information age. I’m sure our ‘enemies’ are well aware of where this aircraft carrier is.

  • JanS March 9, 2013 (7:50 pm)

    Wow..give TR credit….no need to be nasty about it.

  • Shannon March 9, 2013 (7:52 pm)

    The Reagan has been in Bremerton for significant repairs for over a year. It is based out of San Diego on temporary reassignment to Bermerton for the duration of the work. Likely taking her out for a spin as part of the final stages of work.

  • rb March 9, 2013 (8:10 pm)

    On the USS Regan website it says that it was scheduled for a homeport change to San Diego. Dont think it was supposed to be private due to the fact its on a public navy website.

  • ~~HockeyWitch~~ March 9, 2013 (10:27 pm)

    I was thinking the same thing JanS. And I totally agree with 3. Didn’t seem like a secret mission sailing passed everyone in eye site of the water on a bright blue skied, sunny day. Chill people.. CHILL!

  • Kristin March 9, 2013 (11:47 pm)

    Guys…this isn’t a big deal. The movements of the ship and its schedule really isn’t for the whole world to know. However, due to it being in Bremerton for maintenance and repairs, it’s obvious that people will see it when it transits out to do whatever they need to do. It’s the Reagan and its an amazing ship (not as great as the Stennis–but my other half is on it, so itll do) with an amazing crew. Not many people get to see an aircraft carrier, so if you get to, enjoy it. They’re pretty amazing. I was stationed on the Stennis and I remember always loving passing by Seattle and seeing people on the ferries waving and taking pictures. Leave it at that. You’ll know when they’re leaving for good and after that, even though they do have facebook, you won’t ever hear about where they are, if they don’t want the whole world to know. When it gets serious, the only time you will see it is going out and coming in. For now, just enjoy the sight on such a beautiful day and wish them safe training and a safe return.

  • Surfchick March 9, 2013 (11:52 pm)

    HockeyWitch, if you had a loved one aboard a ship, you would feel much differently. There is a reason that if we, as a military spouse, know any plans for a ship, we are under strict instructions to keep that information secret. Have a little respect for the people who put their lives on the line for you.

  • Rick March 10, 2013 (4:18 am)

    Soooo…just where do you hide an aircraft carrier? And how?

  • Joey March 10, 2013 (9:55 am)

    The more relevant question is how do you FIND one roaming the worlds oceans if you are North Korea, Iran or Syria. The answer is, you don’t, unless somebody tells you.

    This isn’t all about China and Russia anymore.

  • Lilly March 10, 2013 (10:34 am)

    This is one the main reasons why I dislike being stationed on the left coast…such disrespect from the locals. In the kind of world we live in today…there is no need to get upset because we want to keep our loved ones safe! This is important to us, and if they navy wanted you to know, then yes, they would release it on their FB page, or send out a public message.

    I’ll “chill” when they ALL come home!

  • Commander's Daughter March 10, 2013 (12:17 pm)

    Jeesh Lily, perhaps it’s your attitude that gets you no respect. It’s a two way street.

  • JanS March 10, 2013 (12:20 pm)

    Lilly…this has nothing to do with a war in Afghanistan. I, too, hope that they come home – soon is not enough, how about now, But…the aircraft carrier we are talking about was in Puget Sound, bright daylight, sailors lined up on deck. Now, that’s not secretive. It has been stated that when the work is done here, they are headed out to their home base of SanDiego. That was said on the gov’t. website, not on here. Please don’t assume that because we live on the left coast that you are not supported. Generalizations get you nowhere. Many of us do not wear our flag on our sleeves, but,wow, don’t knock us unless you know us.

  • spg March 10, 2013 (12:36 pm)

    No offense but the people are the ones that pay for the military. Were not back in the days of World War 2. And any enemy that was a serious threat would be able to find out where the USS Ronald Reagan is if it is port. That is the important aspect of this whole thing. If it was at sea only someone on board is going to give away its position. If someone on here was a sailor commenting on the ships capabilities and future plans I could understand some resentment, but the rest of these arguments are foolish.

  • Becky March 10, 2013 (2:14 pm)

    My son is serving on that awesome ship. Please don’t start rumors about turmoil. There is a reason for confidentiality within the service just as there is a reason for no gossiping at work. Act on the positive side, that all shipmates will make their destination safely, wherever the destination may be.

    Sensationalism creates unsafe positions for our military.

  • Kristin March 10, 2013 (2:17 pm)

    We are not back in the days of WW2? You’re right. We are in the days of 9/11. Regardless of maintenance or repair, deployments, or just training, you’ll know what the crew and government WANT you to know. How do you hide an aircraft carrier? Where’s the Stennis right now? The only way you’ll know is if some kid onboard lets it slip. And that goes back to WW2. Loose lips sink ships? Except now, it’s not just listening to some tapping to intercept a code. Now there are emails, phones, satellites that connect a sailor or marine to their loved one. End the bickering. Those of you who saw the ship, it was awesome wasn’t it? It won’t be the last time you see one coming through there because A NAVAL STATION IS AROUND THE CORNER. And as amazing as those ships are, they’re not invisible unless they’re in a BIG OPEN SEA. And the only people who get to see it then, are the unfortunate individuals that wish to come to close or watch it on their screens because they ARE the enemy and they DO fear it. Enjoy the view, especially if you’re on a ferry. I was on a carrier and the highlight of my deployment was coming home and seeing how many people were happy we came back. That was a feeling I will never forget. Please stop the bickering about schedules and how badly they are hiding…use commen sense please, I beg you. And stop making this an ordeal when it’s not. They’re simply spinning screws right now.

  • Give it up March 10, 2013 (5:16 pm)

    Why are the people on this string getting chastised like children for their comments re: this ship coming into Seattle? No one here is intent on sacrificing anything. You act like since we saw the ship we are on the beach calling Kim Jong Un and saying ‘hey the ship is here.’ Don’t assume we all wanted to know what it was doing or that we don’t care about the military or safety. Slightly ridiculous. Has nothing to do with the West Coast either. It’s common sense. Sounds like your fear really lies with loose lips on your own end. The chiding ‘you’ll know when they want you to know’ and ‘you are jusy civilians’ attitude is really ridiculous and stale. And maybe you need to re-look at 9-11. Just sayin’.

  • Kristin March 10, 2013 (5:38 pm)

    Dude nobody is putting anyone down. It’s views from two different sides. And I pretty much said that the loose lips bit would be from someone on the ship. Nobody is blaming anyone…but when people are saying that its not too much of a secret when people can see it pass by…no shit…there’s a base over there. That’s all I’m saying. When people say its not so secret when they have Facebook profiles for the command, yeah–I know, I follow them. Again, only point is for everyone not to freak out or think too much of it, you really won’t know too much about the ships movement when it needs to be secretive. And that’s nothing personal to civilians, it’s just how it has to be because not everyone understands how much having the whole world know the movement actually jeopardizes those onboard. I don’t think you or anyone can articulate my tone by reading this, but in case you think you can, I assure you I’m not putting anyone down or pointing fingers. As an actual member of the military and one who was in a carrier, I’m simply explaining what people saw and that seeing them wasn’t a big deal. That clear it up a little or should we keep going in circles about something that should just be observational and leave it at that. It was an awesome day to see that from the shore…

  • Kristin March 10, 2013 (5:40 pm)

    I hardly think anyone here needs to re-think 9/11 either. That’s all I take offense to. I was there, I remember it, and I joined the military because of it. You reevaluate the events from that day on and do your own thing, please don’t tell me to do the same. It impacted everyone in different ways, lets just say that when it comes to a ships movement and schedule, it’s directly influenced by what happened that day.

  • anti-obstruction March 10, 2013 (6:39 pm)

    Why, oh why, isn’t there a “Like” feature on this commentary thread???
    Privacy, anonymity, discretion, secrets, confidentiality—what quaint notions in 2013 and all our ensuing years.

  • NavyWife March 10, 2013 (7:51 pm)

    I am a Navy wife and my husband is on a Carrier. OPSEC is very important in our life. HOWEVER if it has been posted on an official Navy website it is ok to talk about it. This includes the ships facebook page as long as it is the official one and not a spouse or family one.

    Lilly you were way out of line. Quoting you here: “This is one the main reasons why I dislike being stationed on the left coast…such disrespect from the locals.” end of your quote.
    The people of the USA do care about the miltiary. Granted the Government does not care but the public does care.
    We have been stationed on both coasts and personally the West Coast is much better than the East Coast.
    It is understandable that when people see a carrier or any Navy ship it is a big deal and they want to know which one it is so they can say that they had seen one. It is an amazing site to see a carrier. I still love seeing them coming and going after 19 years. If it is leaving or coming into the base is not a big secret. Cant hide it. But where it is going then yes you can hide that.

    As for the Stennis they do not have a return date at this time. However it will not be coming home by the end of this month. That is wishful thinking. It was also a rumor some months back.

  • Lilly March 11, 2013 (12:12 am)

    Haha! I am not at all out of line. Having to answer to my school-aged children as to why there are students who have no respect for our servicemember(s) is certainly disrespectful! Add to that all the “colorful” signage in front of people’s houses or around town, the comments that I have read from blogs/article, etc. and I am the one out of line? Hardly! Trust me, it doesn’t end there. We have also been stationed in many parts of the world, and this area by far is more critical of the military than any other duty station we have been to. Did I say that they couldn’t discuss what was already public? Nope, sure didn’t. Is watching a carrier an amazing sight? Indeed. I watched it myself. But when I see people mocking the concern that others feel, when they are just reinforcing what they are taught about OPSEC…yes I take offense to that! The comments here got way off topic. Instead of admiring the beauty of a departing carrier, I see people making light of a situation when others are just pointing out the concern of revealing too much information.

  • Todd March 11, 2013 (9:00 pm)

    2 years ago these sailors were subject to high levels of radiation in Japan, Many got sick and some are going to die from there exposure to the Tepco reactor meltdowns that were concealed from the public. My heart goes out to them and their families

  • James March 11, 2013 (9:14 pm)

    And sometimes the military wants the world to know that a submarine or aircraft carrier is leaving base. It makes the world safer if the bad guys know you might show up in their back yard. Think satellites…

  • Jim March 11, 2013 (11:26 pm)

    the radiation levels got so bad while the USSRR was in Japan that many panicked and tried to get off the ship=others quicly got sick and many tried to commit suicide-many are now in critical condition-YES WE DO HAVE THE RIGHT TO KNOW

  • Josh March 11, 2013 (11:28 pm)

    Cool ship! Oh, uh, that’s it.

  • AnonymousGyu March 12, 2013 (9:31 am)

    My guess is she’s going to Pearl… and who knows… maybe off to destroy N. Korea if it attacks the South.

  • Indianola Eyes March 12, 2013 (6:26 pm)

    She just passed here heading south back to Bremerton. Beautiful sight, for sure. Go look again if you have a chance.

  • Navy Mom March 13, 2013 (8:42 am)

    my son is on the Reagan, We have not been in communication. I assume he is fine, just not allowed to communicate. So please keep me posted as to sightings! thank you!

    • WSB March 13, 2013 (9:37 am)

      Navy Mom – a carrier supposedly was sighted in the misty early evening yesterday according to a couple readers. Don’t know if it was the Reagan – since the weather was so murky, it was nothing like the day of this story, when it turned up in the afternoon weekend sunshine and so many saw it. Thank you to all those who serve, including your son and the loved ones of those who have taken the time to comment here, and to you family members for your support of those who are protecting us.

  • Navy Mom II March 14, 2013 (3:10 pm)

    Navy Mom, The USS RR is now back in port in Bremerton. It took a little spin for a few days after a long nap. Hopefully you will hear from your son soon. Thank you WSB for your kind words. It is truely appreciated.

  • MC2 Black March 14, 2013 (7:17 pm)

    So USS Ronald Reagan was conducting sea trials! We love This community, but we really do miss San Diego. We are almost ready to head down to our home port.

  • Nicole March 18, 2013 (9:36 am)

    I think it was the speculation of where she was going and what she was doing that got people worked up more so than actually seeing her leave. Like NavyWife said, you can’t keep it a secret when a ship comes and goes, but you can keep her mission and her destination a secret. There are satellites and websites that track the ships, and they can speculate, but even they don’t know where any ship is going ’til it gets there.

    On another note, I wholeheartedly disagree that the locals don’t respect the military. When the Stennis left this past summer, I watched her pull out of port from Port Orchard and then drove to Manchester to watch her pass Seattle. The number of people not only in both places but along the road between them was astonishing, and everyone I spoke with expressed their appreciation for the crew as well as the families. We’ve been here several years, and I’ve never heard of anyone being treated with anything but courtesy and respect.

  • Bruce March 18, 2013 (3:38 pm)

    Anyone know if they were able to successfully decontaminate the ship?

    I already know the answer to this, and feel very sorry for the sailors now serving on it.

    US sailors sue Japan’s TEPCO for post-quake radiation exposure

  • Denise March 19, 2013 (7:38 pm)

    She’s on her way home after a year in Bremerton for maintenance and repairs. She’ll be here Thursday evening at Coronado in beautiful San Diego. Not a secret. Just saw it on the news. I ‘ve seen her come and go many times and it always makes me cry. God bless our military and God bless America! God speed our beloved 76! We love you!

  • Denise March 21, 2013 (5:29 pm)

    SHE’S BACK!!!! Just arrived in San Diego a little over an hour ago. What a glorious ship! So very proud to have such a spectacular and awesome sight in our own wonderful city. ⚓🇺🇸Thank you all for your service to our amazing country. WELCOME HOME 76❤

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