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San Antonio Crew Visits Namesake

Navy News Service

Story Number: NNS170502-21
Release Date: 5/2/2017 10:54:00 AM

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jessica Gomez, USS San Antonio (LPD 17) Public Affairs

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (NNS) -- Seven Sailors from the amphibious transport dock ship, including the Executive Officer, Capt. Edgardo Moreno and Command Master Chief Terry Wylie, spent seven days there visiting elementary schools, high schools and Navy Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps students, being interviewed and participating in Fiesta San Antonio events throughout the week.

"I have enjoyed talking about our ship and crew, as well as our recent deployment, with the citizens of San Antonio," said Moreno. "Our command's motto is 'Never Retreat, Never Surrender.' This motto honors the great city of San Antonio."

The Sailors began their trip with high school visits to share their experiences and answer questions about their ship and the Navy. They visited with more than 150 students from Winston Churchill, Southwest and Memorial high schools.

"It was great talking to the high school students this week," said Aviation Boatswain's Mate 1st Class Shawn Johnson, a Sailor assigned to San Antonio. "The students had loads of questions. We had a great time sharing our sea stories with them and what it means to be a Sailor."

Later in the week, the Sailors visited Carl Wanke Elementary to read to kindergarten and first grade classes.

"It was so awesome that Sailors from a ship named after our great city visited with our students at our school," said Annalisa Brockhouse, a first grade teacher at Wanke. "I think it is important, not only for our students, but our community to be able to put a face with the people who are defending our country."

The Sailors took to the basketball court and were honored before a Spurs NBA playoff game and participated all week in events of Fiesta San Antonio, better known as "Fiesta," the city's signature, annual event held across 11 days in April. What started in 1891 as a one-parade event to honor the memory of the heroes of the Alamo and the Battle of San Jacinto, has evolved into a celebration of this city's rich culture.

"We've had so much fun participating in the parades and learning about the important events that are remembered during Fiesta," said Johnson. "This city has welcomed us with open arms and made us feel like rock stars wherever we have gone during the festivities."

On April 24, the Sailors took part in Navy Day at the Alamo, where Moreno was the keynote speaker and administered the oath of enlistment to more than 15 future Sailors.

"Other than the taking the oath at MEPS (Military Entrance Processing Station), this was the only time we would take the oath before we become real Sailors," said Brandon Lee, a future Sailor from San Antonio. "What an honor it was to be sworn in by the captain and in front of so many important leaders in the Navy."

"It was an honor to give the keynote speech at this great event in this great city and so exciting to swear-in these future Sailors," said Moreno. "As USS San Antonio enters its 11th year of service, we will carry forward this city's long tradition of service to America. Viva Fiesta!"

The Navy's Community Outreach Plan endeavors to enhance public awareness and greater understanding of Navy missions, personnel and recruiting efforts through substantive annual visits and ongoing communications between visits.

The San Antonio is the first ship in the fleet to be named after this city, the second largest in the state. She was christened July 19, 2003 by Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas.

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