NORFOLK (NNS) -- The Honorable Thomas B. Modly, Acting Secretary of the Navy, visited the crew of USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78) Nov. 26 in his first visit to the fleet as Acting Secretary.
Modly spent time in different work centers across the ship to meet with Sailors and be personally briefed on the successes of the completion of Ford’s post-shakedown availability (PSA) and recent independent steaming exercise (ISE).
During the ISE, Ford doubled its previous traveling record by sailing more than 7,000 nautical miles, completing more than 1,000 cycles of the advanced weapons elevators (AWE) in all sea states, and performing over 200 simulated advanced arresting gear (AAG) arrestments (pull-outs) and 20 dispatches of lower stage 5 elevators in all sea states.
Additionally, Secretary Modly held an all-hands call, where he addressed the crew and read the names of the fall petty officer advancement results. Seventy-seven Ford Sailors were advanced to the ranks of petty officer first, second and third class.
“You’re all here and you’re all standing in uniform because someone at some point in your life convinced you that it was an honorable thing to do,” said Modly. “I am really grateful for that.”
Modly thanked the crew for the work they do defending the country.
“When I get out and meet with Sailors and Marines I’m convinced that people still believe that it’s an honorable thing to do because the country is good — and it’s worth defending,” he remarked. “So, I want to thank you for your service. It’s something you will never forget and something you will never regret.”
Modly finished the all-hands call leading Ford Sailors with “we must, we will, we are” with the crew responding “Warship 78!”
Gerald R. Ford is a first-in-class aircraft carrier and the first new aircraft carrier designed in more than 40 years. Ford is currently in port after successfully completing independent steaming exercise seven.
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For more news from USS Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn78/.