Story by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jackson G. Brown

SEATTLE – The Commanding Officer of USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) threw out the ceremonial first pitch before a Major League Baseball (MLB) game featuring the Seattle Mariners against the Texas Rangers, May 5.

Capt. Greg Huffman took the mound in front of 26,983 fans before the game at Safeco Field, home of the Seattle Mariners, throwing the first pitch to Capt. Scott Miller, John C. Stennis’ executive officer.

Cheering them on were more than 400 John C. Stennis Sailors, friends and families who were attending the game as part of “John C. Stennis Family Night,” organized by the ship’s Morale, Welfare, and Recreation department (MWR) and hosted by the Mariners.

“We have a great relationship with the Mariners, and it’s great to have them host John C. Stennis Night here,” said Huffman. “It’s a great opportunity for the Sailors to come out and enjoy some beautiful weather and the people of Seattle.”

The Seattle Mariners, established in 1977, are the only MLB team in the Pacific Northwest region, which has a significant naval presence. John C. Stennis, home ported in Bremerton, Washington, is one of two Nimitz-class aircraft carriers stationed in the region.

“We have a close relationship with the city of Bremerton, the city of Seattle, and all the sports teams down here.” said Huffman on the ties John C. Stennis has on the community.

The John C. Stennis Sailors in attendance took advantage of the opportunity to enjoy the game with a discounted ticket package thanks to the ship’s MWR.

“I think it’s great that MWR looks out for Sailors and provides us with an opportunity to go to these games,” said Logistics Specialist 3rd Class Kevin Mizgalski, from New York. “These [games] are some good ways to relax and take a load off.”

In the middle of a high-tempo Planned Incremental Availability (PIA) period at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility, MWR events like John C. Stennis Family Night at SAFECO Field are a welcome break for Sailors who are looking to decompress after a busy week in the “yards.”

John C. Stennis is conducting a PIA at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility, during which the ship is undergoing scheduled maintenance and upgrades.

For more news on John C. Stennis, visit http://www.stennis.navy.mil or follow along on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/stennis74.

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