Nine U.S. representatives from eight states toured the U.S. Navy’s forward deployed aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73) April 22 as part of a visit to naval ships, installations and tenant commands operating within Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Japan.
U.S. Rep. Eric Cantor, along with representatives from Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Texas, South Dakota, Illinois, Hawaii and California, briefly toured the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier to receive a general orientation of the ship and its operations and meet with Sailors from their respective states.
“It’s always one of the most gratifying experiences to come abroad and visit with Sailors,” said Cantor. “These young, bright Sailors are determined to stand up for America, and if it were not for our men and women in uniform, we couldn’t enjoy the kinds of freedom that we do at home.”
Upon arrival, the Congressmen were welcomed by Sailors from their respective states standing by in the ship’s hangar bay awaiting a chance to talk with their representatives.
“It’s a nice change of pace to meet someone who plays a vital role in military legislature back in the United States,” said Aviation Structural Mechanic Airman Kelsey Robbins. “It means a lot to see them the take time out of their schedule to visit us on our ship and show support for what we do.”
After speaking with the Sailors, the distinguished visitors toured the hangar bay, flight deck and navigation bridge before departing the ship.
George Washington and its embarked air wing, Carrier Air Wing 5, provide a combat-ready force that protects and defends the collective maritime interest of the U.S. and its allies and partners in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.
Press Release, April 24, 2014; Image: US Navy