Navy Seaman Michael D. Shelton, son of Carleen Shelton of Rockledge, Fla., and William Shelton of Kingman, along with other sailors stationed aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman departed Naval Station Norfolk, Va., marking the start of the ship's eight- to nine-month deployment to the Arabian Gulf. Truman, along with the other components of the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, completed a training exercise in January prior to their originally scheduled February deployment, and also a sustainment exercise and fleet synthetic training exercise in June. The February deployment was delayed due to sequestration and the change of aircraft carrier presence requirements in the U.S. Central Command Area of Responsibility. The current deployment is part of an ongoing rotation of forward-deployed forces to support maritime security operations in the U.S. 6th and 5th Fleet areas of operations. These operations set the conditions for security and stability in the maritime environment and complement the counter-terrorism and security efforts of regional nations. They also deny international terrorists use of the maritime environment as a venue for attack or to transport personnel, weapons or other material. Truman is the flagship for carrier strike group. It can travel in excess of 30 knots and has a ship's company of approximately 3,000. With the embarked air wing and staffs, the number rises to about 5,000. The carrier strike group also consists of the USS Bulkeley, USS Gettysburg, USS Mason, USS San Jacinto), 1st Combined Destroyer Squadron staff and Carrier Air Wing 3. Shelton is a 2006 graduate of Kingman High School and joined the Navy in June 2012.