Miss Hawaii visits Namesake Submarine

Story Number: NNS120517-38Release Date: 5/17/2012 9:38:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Ronald Gutridge, COMSUBPAC Public Affairs

PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii (NNS) -- The reigning Miss Hawaii visited Virginia-class fast attack submarine USS Hawaii (SSN 776) to show her support of her title namesake submarine, May 16, at the submarine piers aboard Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam.

During the tour Nicole Kealohilani Cheape had the opportunity to learn about daily submarine operations, dined with the crew on the mess decks, took photos with the crew and signed autographs.

"It is an extreme honor to visit our namesake submarine, and I am very grateful for what the Sailors do to protect our nation on a daily basis," said Cheape. "I have never been on a submarine before. I did not realize the amount of skill it takes to operate one and the amount of knowledge and pride of all the crew. It is truly an experience of a lifetime."

The crew of Hawaii was excited about having Cheape visiting their submarine.

"I think is great to have Miss Hawaii to take time out of her schedule and tour the submarine that she represents," said Machinist Mate 2nd Class (SS/DV) Kevin Dillon. "It was a real privilege meeting her and showing her what we do. I am glad she had a good time, and I hope she considers visiting us again."

Cheape, a native of Mililani and a graduate of the University of Hawaii at Manoa with a B.A. in film production, is the 63rd Miss Hawaii and will hold the title until the next competition that will be held in June.

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For more news from Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, visit www.navy.mil/local/subpac/.

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