MAYPORT, Fla. -- John Ingemi started his career in the Navy on this ship. 30-years later he is the last sailor to step off the USS Klakring. "I was the first messenger of the watch when the ship was commissioned," said Ingemi.
Dozens of sailors lined the dock at NAS Mayport to say good-bye to the guided-missile frigate on Friday The USS Klakring completed more than 22 deployments and has sailed more than 3.2 million miles worldwide.
"It brought out a lot of memories. We truly were a band of brothers. We went into harms way as children and came out as men," said Ingemi.
"At some point we have to retire the old and bring in the new," said USS Klakring Commanding Officer, Bert Hodge.
Two weeks ago the USS Underwood was also retired at Mayport. The Navy plans to decommission all 11 of their frigates by 2015.
"Even though the ships may be old and the technology may be obsolete, but the sailors that man these ships are still state of the art. They always have been, and they find ways to accomplish the mission always," said Captain Paul Flood.
It marks the end of an era for the men and woman who served on board. "We were honored to man the rails one last time," said Ingemi.
"It's just sad to see it go," said Hodge. And they all honorably gave their final salute to what was once their home away from home.
Three more ships are set to arrive in Mayport. The USS New York will be the first to dock later this year.