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USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) Departs From Guam

24 June 2024

From Petty Officer 3rd Class Eric Stanton

SANTA RITA, Guam — The U.S. Navy’s only forward-deployed aircraft carrier, USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), departed Naval Base Guam following a scheduled three-day port visit, June 22.

Ronald Reagan arrived in Guam on June 19, following its participation in Valiant Shield 2024, a multinational, joint field training exercise focused on integration between U.S. and allied forces in a multi-domain environment. The carrier was joined in Guam by the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Robert Smalls (CG 62).

“We extend our gratitude to the people of Guam for their welcome and their hospitality during our visit. Each time we return, we grow closer,” said Capt. Daryle Cardone, Ronald Reagan’s commanding officer. “I’m glad the crew had the opportunity to engage with the local community, in addition to experiencing all the beautiful sights, history, and culture Guam has to offer.”

The ship’s command religious ministries department (CRMD) and Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) teams provided several opportunities for Sailors to learn about the country, offering guided tours and chances to volunteer in the local communities.

One of the volunteer opportunities organized by the ship’s CRMD involved Sailors visiting Manuel Ulloa Lujan Elementary School. They were able to interact with students at the school and share their experiences in the Navy.

“I hope we’re able to have some impact, and they listen to what we have to say,” said Logistics Specialist 1st Class Josue Reyna, assigned to the Saberhawks of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 77, embarked aboard USS Ronald Reagan. “We talked about our different backgrounds and what each of us does on the ship. We all have different jobs, but each one is important.”

The Sailors’ stories helped the students learn more about the military on the island, and it opened up a window into each individual service member’s life.

“[This volunteer opportunity] was really important and it helped show that we can be who we want to be and we give back to the community, helping everybody see who we are as individuals,” said Yeoman 3rd Class Layla Scott, assigned to the USS Robert Smalls.

According to Mariquita Fegurgur, the summer school coordinator, the Sailors visit was a rare opportunity for the students to interact with military personnel.

“It’s important that [the children] know that you have an impact on all their lives,” said Fegurgur. “They have to understand that Guam is important to the world, especially the U.S. You come here, and you’re giving part of what you do to our community.”

The Ronald Reagan Carrier Strike Group, including USS Robert Smalls and the embarked Carrier Air Wing 5 and staff members of Destroyer Squadron 15, are forward-deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations. U.S. 7th Fleet is the Navy's largest forward-deployed numbered fleet, and routinely interacts and operates with allies and partners in preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific region.

  
 

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