USS JAMES E. WILLIAMS, At Sea (NNS) -- The "Cooks From the Valley" organization treated Sailors aboard guided-missile destroyer USS James E. Williams (DDG 95) to more than 400 pounds of Prime-USDA, New York steaks, July 4.
Walter Fisher, a member of "Cooks From the Valley," arrived aboard James E. Williams to offer his thanks and express his appreciation for the crew.
For Fisher, the trip was about both celebrating Independence Day as well as bringing a touch of home to the Sailors deployed aboard James E. Williams.
"This truly is just a token of appreciation, but it's a relatively small token of appreciation for all that they do," said Fisher. "So, we try to bring a little bit of home [to them] since [they] can't go home."
The steaks are brought ready for shipment to Naval Air Station Lemoore, and were loaded into military transport aircraft, flown with the members of "Cooks from the Valley" and then delivered to service members abroad.
"It's unbelievable the amount of coordination it takes to put this together," said Fisher. "From the time you purchase steaks, fly them half way around the world and coordinate with all the ships... it is extreme."
Wearing a Williams' ball-cap and apron over sturdy work-jeans, Fisher single-handedly grilled more than 300 steaks for the crew amidst the heavy listing and pitching of the ship as it transited the Arabian Sea.
"I don't live that far from the coast in California, and I was hanging out the past couple of months hoping that you'd come by and I'd buy you a steak, but you never showed," said Fisher jokingly to Sailors. "So I tracked you down over here, and now I'll feed you over here."
"Cooks from the Valley" is an organization comprised of philanthropic professionals who purchase high-grade steak out-of-pocket, travel to wherever military personnel are located, fire up the grill and prepare meals for service members free-of-charge.
James E. Williams is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility conducting maritime security operations, theater security cooperation efforts and supporting missions as part of Operation Enduring Freedom.
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