BUSAN, Republic of Korea (NNS) -- USS George Washington (CVN 73) arrived in Busan, Republic of Korea (ROK) July 21 for a port visit to promote goodwill and ambassadorship to the United States' longstanding ally.
Greeted by ROK sailors and a musical performance from a ROK navy band, GW is making its first port visit of its 2010 Western Pacific summer patrol and its second visit to Busan. The carrier last visited the ROK port in October 2008.
"On behalf of the 5,500 Sailors of the George Washington and the Carrier Air Wing Five team, we thank you for your hospitality and friendship," said GW Commanding Officer Capt. David A. Lausman to representatives of the ROK navy who were pierside when GW pulled into port.
After the official welcoming party departed, Lausman hosted a news conference for more than 75 local, regional and international journalists and then escorted them on a tour of the ship which included a stop in the hangar bay and an elevator ride to the flight deck.
"We are proud to show you our ship and introduce you to the fine young Sailors of the United States Navy," said Lausman. "The United States maintains a robust presence in the Asia-Pacific region and we are committed to your nation."
In the coming days, GW will open the 97,000 ton aircraft carrier for tours and host a reception for distinguished ROK guests.
"The GW team is very happy to be visiting Busan and having the chance to spend time on this beautiful navy base, and we look forward to the opportunity to learn from each other," said Lausman.
During the visit, GW Sailors will participate in eleven different community service projects, meet and interact with local citizens, experience local customs and traditions and enjoy recreational activities offered in Busan.
The GW is the Navy's only forward deployed air carrier and is stationed at Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka in Yokosuka, Japan. It is currently on its summer patrol ensuring security and stability in the Western Pacific.
For more news from USS George Washington, visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn73/.