Amphibious dock landing ship USS Whidbey Island (LSD 41) pulled into Augusta Bay, Sicily for a scheduled port visit July 11.
The stop offers Whidbey Island the opportunity to resupply, and is the first foreign port visit for the ship’s Sailors and embarked Marines from the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU).
“This is the first foreign liberty port that Whidbey Island has seen in five years. It’s a great opportunity for our crew.” – Cmdr. Ethan Rule, USS Whidbey Island commanding officer.
While in port, Sailors and Marines will have a number of sightseeing and cultural excursions offered through Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR).
Partnerships with NATO allies and European partners allow a U.S. naval presence and strengthen the shared goals of maintaining safety and security of the world’s oceans and sea lanes.
Whidbey Island, along with Commander, Amphibious Squadron 6, amphibious transport dock ship USS San Antonio (LPD 17), amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD 1) and the embarked 22nd MEU, comprise the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group (ARG).
The Wasp ARG is currently deployed to support maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations.