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BHR Wraps Up Fleet Week Stay

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS061013-01
Release Date: 10/13/2006 10:53:00 AM

By Mass Communications Specialist 2nd Class (SW/AW) Jenniffer Rivera and Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Dustin Mapson, USS Bonhomme Richard Public Affairs

SAN FRANCISCO (NNS) -- Sailors and Marines of USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) (BHR) sailed away from San Francisco Oct. 11, marking the end of San Francisco Fleet Week 2006.

Founded in 1981, Fleet Week is a five-day celebration of the sea services and a show of appreciation from the city of San Francisco.

During Fleet Week 2006, BHR participated in a host of events, including a parade of ships upon arrival in the San Francisco Bay. The ship also took part in community service projects throughout the Bay Area and hosted nearly 3,000 people for tours Oct. 8. The multi-purpose amphibious assault ship, home ported at Naval Station San Diego, also hosted 500 visitors at Commander, 3rd Fleet’s Fleet Week reception Oct. 9.

For BHR Commanding Officer, Capt. Steve Green, Fleet Week is a great opportunity for Sailors and Marines to see how much the city of San Francisco appreciates their service.

“Being invited to San Francisco is great,” said Green. “I believe it is a great sign of how meaningful our service is and that we are appreciated.”

San Francisco was known as a Navy town when Naval Air Station Alameda and Treasure Island Naval Station were active Navy bases. Those facilities closed in the 1990s, however, and for Greg Brazil, president of the Oakland Navy League, this was an opportunity for the Bay Area to show they still care.

“For many years, we haven’t had active duty here,” said Brazil. “It is important to show the thousands that support the Navy who you are and what you do.”

The many events of Fleet Week were a great opportunity for the public to get to know the Navy, but also a great chance for many of the Navy/Marine Corps team aboard BHR to show off their ship to loved ones.

“It’s great to experience Fleet Week with family and friends,” said Marine Corps Maj. Michael Hommel, BHR’s air operations officer. “I enjoyed giving them tours because it opens their eyes on what we do on a daily basis.”

For San Francisco native Michael Thompson, who served a combined 10 years in the Army and Marine Corps, fleet week was a chance for veterans to get back amongst active duty service members.

“I enjoy the camaraderie between veterans and active duty that I have gotten the chance to experience during Fleet Week,” said Thompson.

The many different events on the waterfront and around the San Francisco area afforded Sailors and Marines a chance to show exactly who they are and what they do for a living.

“Fleet Week brings good Navy awareness,” said Musician Third Class Vincent Moody of the Navy Band Southwest. “Most people only know the Navy through what they see on TV, when there is so much more.”

Other ships that participated in Fleet Week are the USS Princeton (CG 59), USS Nimitz (CVN 68), USS Higgins (DDG 76), USS Chafee (DDG 90), USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53) and USCG Steadfast.



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