USS Oklahoma City submarine is retiring after 33 years

Commissioned for service in 1988, the USS Oklahoma City has been home to a 140-person crew and traveled around the globe, including to the Mediterranean, the Persian Gulf, the Eastern Pacific and its home port of Guam.

Its crew also has formed a relationship with its namesake over the decades. Carter said some of the commanders run in the annual Memorial Marathon honoring those lost in the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.

“Regardless of where they’ve been, where they are … keeping the relationship with our city has been so important to them,” Carter said. “We want to make sure that we’re doing the same thing for them.”

The USS Oklahoma City is part of the Los Angeles-class of submarines — built during the Cold War to hunt other submarines and surface ships — which are steadily retiring and being replaced with the Virginia class.

Commander Sean Welch told the Kitsap Sun in November he and others will miss the “688s,” which submarines of the class are often called.

“They’re just fun to drive,” Welch said.

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