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Homeland Security

President Bush Returns to Iwo Jima

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS050916-03
Release Date: 9/16/2005 8:34:00 AM

By Journalist 1st Class (SW) Mike Jones, USS Iwo Jima Public Affairs

NEW ORLEANS (NNS) -- President George W. Bush made another stop aboard USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7) Sept. 15 following a tour of the Gulf Coast region, where relief and recovery efforts in the wake of Hurricane Katrina are ongoing.

Iwo Jima Commanding Officer Capt. Richard S. Callas, Executive Officer Capt. Michael Walley and Command Master Chief CMDCM (SW/AW) Jim Cox were among several dignitaries who greeted Bush on the multipurpose amphibious assault ship’s flight deck after Marine One touched down.

The President departed and received a motorcade tour of downtown New Orleans, where relief and recovery efforts continue. He then addressed the nation live from the city’s Jackson Square.

Bush returned to LHD 7 following the national address and took time to meet members of the crew and pause for photos.

“That was an awesome experience,” said Hull Technician (HT) 3rd Class Michael Rose. “It felt really good to see our commander-in-chief come over and meet us.” Rose was among several Iwo HTs and Damage Controlmen who spent the day helping to dewater local hospital facilities in downtown New Orleans.

“It was exciting,” added Information Systems Technician 2nd Class (SW) Kristina Montgomery. “This is definitely an experience I’ll never forget.”

Bush returned to the flight deck and departed Iwo Jima following the event.

Iwo Jima departed Norfolk Aug. 31 to join relief and recovery efforts in the Gulf of Mexico following devastation in the wake of Hurricane Katrina.

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