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7th Fleet, Strike Group Commanders Visit Essex

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070928-21
Release Date: 9/28/2007 4:07:00 PM

By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class (SW) Mark Alvarez, USS Essex Public Affairs

SASEBO, Japan (NNS) -- Vice Adm. Doug Crowder, commander, U.S. 7th Fleet (C7F), and Rear Adm. Carol Pottenger, commander, U.S. Amphibious Force 7th Fleet visited USS Essex (LHD 2), Sept. 26, to meet with Essex's leadership and hold a question-and-answer session with department heads and senior enlisted leaders.

Some of the issues, questions and suggestions discussed were concerning future manning, integrated training with multi-national forces, and U.S. naval presence in the Western Pacific.

“The forward-deployed naval forces, such as those based here in Sasebo, play an important role in maintaining maritime security. And maritime security is a critical underpinning to today’s global economy, and thus, our prosperity,” said Crowder. “So make no mistake, you are all part of a critical mission in this area of responsibility.”

Throughout the visit, Crowder emphasized the operational necessity of the forward-deployed amphibious force and also spoke about the importance of mentoring and developing Sailors into future leaders.

Essex Sailors were excited to see C7F and ESG 7 aboard their ship and were curious to find out what they had to say.

“It made us feel good to see the admirals come out to visit the ship,” said Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Fuels) Airman Timothy Wilcox. “This is the first time I have seen a three-star admiral.”

C7F is embarked in the command and control ship USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19), which is forward-deployed to Yokosuka.

Task Force 76 is headquartered at White Beach Naval Facility, Okinawa, Japan, with an operating detachment in Sasebo, Japan.

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