SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) received special recognition from California State Senator Brian W. Jones for outstanding community service at Noah Homes, October 10.
Senator Jones recognized Bonhomme Richard’s Sailors for their dedication to the betterment of their community and service to the residents of Noah Homes through outstanding volunteer efforts.
“We enjoy what we do and we don't do it for recognition, we do it because it’s our passion,” said Religious Programs Specialist 2nd Class Luis Fellipy Castro. “As nice as this recognition is, I think the major impact is really the lives that are affected.”
Sailors assigned to Bonhomme Richard volunteered at the special needs residency as one of many community relation (COMREL) events that the command routinely sponsors.
“It is great to know that Bonhomme Richard organizes a lot of COMREL events,” said Aviation Boatswain’s Mate Handling Airman Ifeanyi Areh. “Growing up, I didn’t get a lot of opportunities like this where I can help people.”
Areh is one of many Sailors who consistently volunteers for COMREL events. He has accumulated 100 volunteer hours since being assigned to the Bonhomme Richard six months ago.
“The purpose of COMRELs are for the command to show that we bring more to the community than just being out in the field and defending the country,” said Castro. “It allows us to build friendly relationships with the community.”
Bonhomme Richard averages 15 to 25 Sailors per event, who commit to give back to their community.
“Our Sailors understand that life is bigger than just them,” said U.S. Navy Lt. Jeffrey Birch, a chaplain aboard Bonhomme Richard. “They have got to serve something bigger than them by serving the ship and also serving the community, and strengthening the bonds between the Navy and our community.
Bonhomme Richard is in its homeport of San Diego.
For more news from USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6), visit www.navy.mil/local/lhd6/.