Java Sea — The submarine tender USS Emory S. Land (AS 39) successfully completed a vertical replenishment (VERTREP) and refueling at sea with the Lewis and Clark-class dry cargo ship USNS Amelia Earhart (T-AKE-6) Dec. 29.
Amelia Earhart moved alongside Emory S. Land and transported more than 30 pallets between the two vessels via helicopter and provided the submarine tender with 100,000 gallons of fuel.
The evolution was a means to demonstrate the crew's ability to effectively conduct a VERTREP and refueling at sea.
"Many Sailors aboard Emory S. Land are here on one year orders," said Capt. Mark A. Prokopius, commanding officer of Emory S. Land. "This was an opportunity for those who haven't been part of an at-sea-replenishment to see how it's done."
The replenishment was a joint effort by Sailors and Military Sealift Command (MSC) civilian mariners assigned to Emory S. Land.
"This is very unique for this ship," said Boatswain's Mate 1st Class Jason Wommack. "This is a ship that is full of submariners and the ship only does it once a year, which makes the crew a little apprehensive."
"Fortunately for us, we have very well trained MSC crew on board and a very competent boatswain who is familiar with the evolution and has been able to take the reins and make everyone excited about it," said Wommack.
Rodney Rice, MSC Boatswain on Emory S. Land, has participated in many underway-replenishments on the ship and stresses their importance to the Navy's mission.
Emory S. Land is a forward deployed expeditionary submarine tender on an extended deployment conducting coordinated tended moorings and afloat maintenance in the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet areas of operations.