USS GEORGE H.W. BUSH, At Sea (NNS) -- Commander, U.S. 5th Fleet, accompanied the Sailors of the nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77) as it transited the Strait of Hormuz Aug. 30.
Vice Adm. Mark Fox embarked the Navy's newest aircraft carrier, visited with crew members, and expressed his appreciation for their efforts in the region conducting maritime security operations and supporting Operations Enduring Freedom and New Dawn.
"The United States Navy exists to protect our national interests around the globe, and we have tremendous national interest in this part of the world," said Fox during an all-hands call. "Wherever this ship goes with her air wing and with the strike group, it shows American influence and concern about this region. You reassure our friends, and you deter our enemies."
Fox also used the opportunity to present awards to 10 enlisted Sailors and thank the crew for their performance during the first half of their deployment.
"You represent excellence," he said to the crew. "You don't just drift into having high performance airplanes, with well-maintained engines launching off of catapults and coming back and landing on a routine basis -- without amazing, incredible teamwork. You guys are my heroes."
The aircraft carrier is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility on its first operational deployment conducting maritime security operations and support missions as part of Operations Enduring Freedom and New Dawn.
For more news from USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn77/.