Sailors aboard the U.S. Navy’s forward-deployed Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS McCampbell (DDG 85) had a lot of ice to battle before pulling into Otaru, Japan, on February 3.
The warm welcome the sailors received was an appreciated contrast to the conditions at sea they previously experienced.
During the four days McCampbell spent in port, the ship hosted tours for distinguished visitors and participated in sporting events with local residents. Sailors also, volunteered at the Otaru Snow Light Path Festival.
“We sincerely appreciated the hospitality and warm welcome we received,” said Cmdr. Ed Angelinas, commanding officer of McCampbell. “We are grateful for the opportunity to experience the local culture and participate in the festivals with the people of Otaru.”
Once the ship moored in port, McCampbell leadership attended welcome meetings hosted by the Honorable Hideaki Morii, mayor of Otaru, Hiroyuki Yamaguchi, chief of Otaru Police Department, Hideaki Yamamoto, chairperson of Otaru Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and Capt. Kenji Moribe, commander, Otaru Coast Guard Office.
The warm welcome continued when the sailors were invited to a Welcome Reception hosted by the Otaru Japan Self-Defense Force Supporters Association.
“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in Otaru and Sapporo,” said Logistics Specialist 1st Class Ambrosio Maddagan, from Honolulu, Hawaii. “I will not forget the amazing sights and I hope to come back with my family.”