BUSAN, Republic of Korea (NNS) -- Sailors assigned to USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), embarked Carrier Air Wing Fourteen (CVW) 14, Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 7, and Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 7 were treated to a special concert March 23 as the band, Bad Moon, rocked the hangar bay while performing for the crew during a port visit to Busan, Republic of Korea.
The concert, sponsored by the United Service Organization (USO) and Ronald Reagan’s Morale Welfare and Recreation (MWR) Division, was the first concert held on board Ronald Reagan during the current deployment.
“We wanted to give Sailors a variety of options for things to do on liberty in Busan,” said Christy Eschenbacher, Ronald Reagan’s MWR director. “We also wanted to provide a little entertainment for the duty section and those who decided not to leave the ship.”
Sailors aboard Ronald Reagan who attended the event said they appreciated the work that went into putting on the concert for the crew.
“This is the best band we’ve ever had aboard the ship,” said Damage Control Fireman Nicholas Cook, a native of Grass Valley, Calif., who just happened to have duty the day of the concert. “It’s a big boost in morale for the crew and a chance to relax.”
Members of the band said this was the first time they had performed aboard a Navy ship.
“We appreciate what you guys do out here,” said Bad Moon lead singer and manger James “JT” Tanner. “Because of you, we can do what we do.”
Tanner, who retired from the U.S. Air Force after serving 20 years, said he joined the military when Ronald Reagan was president and playing a concert on board an aircraft named after him was quite an honor.
“I voted for Ronald Reagan and he is one of my favorite presidents,” said Tanner. “The people loved that man, and he was good to us [the military]. When we found out the ship was coming to Korea, playing on board was something we just had to do.”
Ronald Reagan’s port visit to Busan is in conjunction with the Ronald Reagan Strike Group’s participation in Exercise Reception, Staging, Onward Movement and Integration/Foal Eagle (RSOI/FE) 2007.
Exercise RSOI/FE 07 is a scheduled combined/joint exercise conducted annually involving forces from both the United States and the Republic of Korea. RSOI/FE 07 is designed to provide training in the various aspects of reception, staging, onward movement, and integration as well as focusing on rear area security and sustainment operations.
The exercise demonstrates U.S. commitment to the ROK/U. S. alliance and enhances combat readiness of ROK and U.S. supporting forces through combined and joint training.
Ronald Reagan was commissioned in July, 2003, making it the ninth and newest Nimitz-class nuclear-powered aircraft carrier. The ship is named after the 40th U.S. president, and carries the motto of “Peace through Strength,” a recurrent theme during the Reagan presidency.
The Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group departed San Diego on Jan. 27.
For related news, visit the USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) Navy NewsStand page at www.news.navy.mil/local/cvn76/.