WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The master chief petty officer of the Navy (MCPON) wrapped up his 18-day trip to the Western Pacific Sept. 2, where he visited various commands and talked with Sailors.
MCPON (SS/SW) Rick D. West made stops in Hawaii, Guam, Japan and Korea during his visit.
His first stop was Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickman where he toured and visited the crews of the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Chafee (DDG 90), the guided-missile cruiser USS Chosin (CG 65) and the Los Angeles-class fast-attack submarine USS Pasadena (SSN 752), as well as an impromptu visit to USS Hawaii (SSN 776). West also met with senior leadership and held an all-hands call at the Sharkey Theater.
While in Guam, West joined Sailors from Maritime Expeditionary Security Squadron 7 for an early morning physical training session and continued the day with a visit to the Fleet and Family Support Center. He also held all-hands calls for chief petty officers and E-6 and below personnel. Additionally, he visited with Sailors aboard the Los Angeles-class attack submarines USS Buffalo (SSN 715), USS City of Corpus (SSN 705), USS Houston (SSN 713), and the Ohio-class nuclear-powered fleet ballistic missile submarine USS Michigan (SSGN 727) and the Emory S. Land-class submarine tender USS Frank Cable (AS 40). Afterwards, MCPON visited Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 5 and Naval Special Warfare Unit 1 where he toured the commands and talked with Sailors.
West then flew to Japan and joined the area's chief petty officer selectees for their traditional hike to the highest and most famous mountain in Japan, Mt. Fuji. West said the climb was something he will always remember.
"It was really cool that MCPON was able to hike Fuji with us," said Chief (Select) Electronics Technician (SW) Patrick Davis, with Commander, Submarine Group 7. "He is the first MCPON I ever met and he was very approachable. It was an honor to meet him. At Fuji, we (Yokosuka chief petty officer selectees) presented him with a Japanese scroll doll signed by all the selectees."
West made a quick stop in Misawa, Japan, his first visit since taking office as MCPON, before meeting up with Vice Chief of Naval Operations (VCNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert, in the Republic of Korea. Together MCPON and VCNO toured the child development center and Fleet and Family Support Center before heading back to Yokosuka, Japan. There they held an all-hands call and answered questions covering topics such as manning, rate mergers, education, uniforms and the future of the Navy.
Before leaving Japan, MCPON toured the guided-missile destroyers USS Stethem (DDG 63), USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62), USS Lassen (DDG 82) and the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67).
"I am proud of all of you. Keep up the great work out here in FDNF (Forward Deployed Naval Forces)," said West.
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