NEW YORK (NNS) -- New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio hosted a breakfast and press conference honoring Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen at Gracie Mansion, May 22.
The event paid homage to the hard work and dedication of the sea services and also served as an official welcome to those aboard the three U.S. Navy and two U.S. Coast Guard ships attending Fleet Week New York (FWNY).
"This is an incredible opportunity for visiting service members to get to know this extraordinary city," said de Blasio. "We appreciate their presence here deeply and we hope the diversity and variety of New York City offers a nice break from the hard work they do."
Also in attendance, the Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus shared his excitement for the return of FWNY and highlighted the importance of Americans getting to know sea service members on a personal level to better understand the nature of their important jobs.
"I am very happy that Fleet Week is back," said Mabus. "The reason that Fleet Week is so crucial is that the American people don't get to see very often how talented and skilled our Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen are, and how challenging their jobs can be. Fleet Week gives service members the opportunity to get to know the people they are protecting and vice versa."
The Mayor also offered praise to the response of the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard to hurricane Sandy in 2012.
"Our armed services were there for us during that grave natural disaster," said de Blasio. "In a time of great need, the sea services played a crucial role in rescue and support efforts in Sandy's aftermath. New Yorkers love Fleet Week because we get to show our appreciation to the people we respect so much, the men and women of our armed services, while they enjoy our city."
FWNY, now in its 26th year, is the city's time-honored celebration of the sea services. The weeklong celebration is an unparalleled opportunity for the citizens of New York and the surrounding tri-state area to meet Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen, as well as witness firsthand the latest capabilities of today's maritime services.
For up-to-date information on Fleet Week New York events, visit the official Fleet Week New York website at www.fleetweeknewyork.com, "Like" www.facebook.com/FleetWeekNewYork, or "Follow" www.twitter.com/FleetWeekNYC.
For more news from Commander, Navy Region Mid Atlantic, visit www.navy.mil/local/cnrma/.