USS RONALD REAGAN, At sea (NNS) -- Sen. John Ensign, R-Nevada, embarked USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), the Navy's newest nuclear-powered aircraft carrier, Dec. 12-13 as the ship participated in simulated combat scenarios during Joint Task Force Exercise (JTFEX) 06-2.
Ensign's visit was part of the Navy's distinguished visitor program, which helps government officials, business executives, community and educational leaders learn more about carrier aircraft operations. The senator received an extensive tour of the ship and watched flight operations, all the while learning more about the procedures of the mobile combat airport and the Sailors who operate it.
"Being out here and seeing the Sailors do their jobs is something every senator should do," said Ensign. "Every time I'm around our military I thank God for the folks in uniform. They are truly amazing."
Reagan Sailors from the state of Nevada were also invited to join the senator for breakfast on the mess decks. For those who attended, the event proved to be a rare and exciting opportunity to meet their senator.
"I feel honored to be sitting down with one of my senators," said Storekeeper Seaman Joseph Birchill, a native of Carson City, Nev. "It's a nice reminder that our work does not go unnoticed and that we are making a difference in our world today."
For related news, visit the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) Navy NewsStand page at www.news.navy.mil/local/cvn76/.