By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Matthew Riggs
SOUTH CHINA SEA – The U.S. Navy’s forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73) hosted Malaysian distinguished visitors for a tour of the ship at sea, June 24.
The 22 distinguished visitors, including Mr. Datuk Abd Rahim Bakri, Malaysain deputy defense minister and Rear Adm. Dato’ Pahlawan Mior Rosdi, assistant chief of staff, operating and excersises, Royal Malaysian navy, embarked George Washington to learn about the ship’s capabilities and operations.
“On behalf of the 5,500 Sailors, chiefs and officers combined that comprise the crew, welcome to George Washington. It truly is an honor to have all of you on board our ship today,” said Capt. Greg Fenton, George Washington’s commanding officer.
The guests were taken around the ship to view flight operations, and to learn about aircraft embarked aboard the ship.
“It really gives our Malaysian friends insight into working with the United States Navy,” said Capt. James McReynolds, U.S. Embassy Malaysia, defense attaché. “Being able to come aboard the ship, and see flight operations and experience the hard work that’s going on an aircraft carrier 24/7 is an eye opening experience. You can talk to people about it and show them photos and movies, but it’s hard to really understand until they actually see what’s going on.”
The tour helped various aspects of Malaysian military and government see and understand the operations of a forward-deployed Nimitz-class aircraft carrier.
“This visit was important for us because it allows us to be more aware of the George Washington’s capabilities and what it can do,” said Mior Rosdi. “We can better understand how and where we can help each other when we need to.”
The Malaysian guests all voiced their brief, but memorable visit to George Washington.
“I enjoyed watching the aircraft launch and land,” said Mior Rosdi. “It’s fascinating to see the readiness of the ship and its crew all working together as a team to launch and recover aircraft. It was quite impressive to see it all in action.”