Story by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class David A. Cox

SOUTH CHINA SEA – Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. John M. Richardson visited USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), June 5-6.

While aboard, Richardson flew in an E-2C Hawkeye assigned to the Golden Hawks of Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 112, toured the ship and addressed the crew through John C. Stennis’ closed circuit television.

“Everywhere I go right now people are talking to me and asking me about the South China Sea,” said Richardson. “So much of the world’s trade travels through this ocean, one third of the total trade of the world. Everybody is concerned about the stability, the peacefulness and prosperity of this region, as I talk to them I know that things are going to be okay because we have the John C. Stennis Strike Group on station here in the South China Sea.”

Richardson praised the crew for their efforts in projecting the importance of the Navy’s core values of honor, courage and commitment.

“When they talk about regional security, when they talk about stability, when they talk about maintaining the peace, when they talk about understanding the strategic implications of this part of the world, they’re talking about you,” said Richardson.

Later in the evening, Richardson re-enlisted 21 Sailors in the ship’s forecastle.

Navy Counselor 1st Class Robert Boese, from Hutchinson, Kansas, said it was a great opportunity being reenlisted by the CNO.

“I appreciated the fact he gave us this chance,” said Boese. “He’s not someone you get to interact with on a daily basis in the Navy.”

Providing a ready force supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific, John C. Stennis is operating as part of the Great Green Fleet on a regularly scheduled 7th Fleet deployment.

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