Sailors aboard USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) participated in a prayer and remembrance service in the ship’s foc’sle Sept. 9, commemorating the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks.
Approximately 100 Sailors attended the service to show their support for America, honor lost heroes, and to give thanks for the lives that were spared that day.
“My uncle worked about two blocks away from the World Trade Center,” said Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Fueling) 3rd Class Robert Villafane. “He was late for work on the day of the attacks. I think that might have saved his life.”
Cmdr. Cameron H. Fish, the ship’s command chaplain, and Lt. Joel DeGraeve, command chaplain for Carrier Air Wing (CVW) Eight, hosted the non-denominational prayer service so that Sailors could come together to remember the events of 9/11.
“We felt it was important to try and get the crew together to pray and remember as a unit, especially since it’s the 10th anniversary,” said Fish.
Sailors like Aviation Ordnanceman Airman (AW) Maurice D. Rogers-Ashe and Rear Adm. Nora W. Tyson, commander Carrier Strike Group (CSG) Two, united to sing “God Bless America” and reflect on the events of Sept. 11, 2001.
“I came to show my respect and honor those who have lost family and loved ones,” said RogersAshe.
Participants watched a video displaying photos of service members, firefighters, and civilians that were lost that day as excerpts from former president George W. Bush’s speech played in the background.
“I think it helps Sailors understand why they’re here,” said DeGraeve, “It helps them understand why we serve in the military.”
George H.W. Bush is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility on its first operational deployment conducting maritime security operations and support missions as part of Operations Enduring Freedom and New Dawn.
Source: navy, September 13, 2011;