USS Ronald Reagan returns to San Diego after more than a year in Washington state

1,092-foot vessel has 2,500 crew members

SAN DIEGO - The aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan -- and the dozens of cars belonging to its crew members -- returned to Naval Air Station North Island in Coronado Thursday afternoon, following 14 months of major maintenance in Bremerton, Wash.

The Navy said the 1,092-foot vessel and its crew of 2,500 spent more than a year at the Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility.

Sky10 footage of the carrier's arrival showed dozens of cars belonging to the crew members parked on its deck, giving it a ferry boat-like appearance.

"Completing an availability such as this ensures that Ronald Reagan will reach her 50-year life span," ship Commanding Officer Capt. Thom Burke said. "There's a lot of work and a lot of planning that goes into maintaining these combat vessels, and the last year was a major step in ensuring we're ready to successfully operate at sea when our country calls upon us."

Aircraft carriers generally undergo major maintenance every eight to 10 years. The Reagan was launched in 2001.

Many of the sailors brought their families with them to Washington state, but about 600 left their loved ones behind in San Diego.

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