ODESA, Ukraine (NNS) -- The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Carney (DDG 64) departed Odesa, Ukraine, July 9, 2019, after completing a scheduled port visit as part of exercise Sea Breeze 2019.
While in port, Sailors assigned to Carney were able to train alongside partner navies while taking part in visit, board, search, and seizure drills, and command and control simulations at the Ukrainian Naval Training Center where they participated in both fire-fighting and pipe-patching exercises in the Ukrainian Navy’s survivability training building. As part of a competitive team-building activity, they were also able to play in a soccer tournament with five countries.
“It was an amazing experience getting able to interact and play (soccer) with foreign partners,” said Damage Controlman Fireman Mateo Lopez, from Los Lunes, New Mexico. “Not only was it fun but it was great for team building and camaraderie as well.”
Sea Breeze is an annual Ukraine and U.S. co-hosted multinational maritime exercise held in the Black Sea and is designed to enhance interoperability of participating nations to strengthen maritime security and stability within the region.
“We are extremely grateful for the opportunity that exercise Sea Breeze has provided our Sailors to be able to interact and train with partner navies,” said Command Master Chief David Marcus, senior enlisted leader aboard the Carney.
“It is essential for us to be out here with our allies and friends so that we may sharpen our skills to stand ready at a moment’s notice.”
Carney entered the Black Sea June 29, 2019, to strengthen interoperability with NATO allies and partners and demonstrate the collective resolve to security in the Black Sea region. Carney is the fifth U.S. naval vessel to operate in the Black Sea this year.
The U.S. Navy routinely operates in the Black Sea consistent with international law, as well as with the Montreux Convention.
U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.
For more news from Navy Public Affairs Support Element Det. Europe, visit www.navy.mil/local/NPASEDE/.