Tuesday, July 28, 2009

USS Russell Deploys to Support Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training 2009

By Lt.j.g. Douglas Marks, USS Russell Public Affairs

PEARL HARBOR (NNS) -- Family and friends said goodbye to more than 250 officers and crew members of the Pearl Harbor-based guided-missile destroyer, USS Russell (DDG 59) July 27.

Russell, commanded by Cmdr. Rodney M. Patton, is scheduled for a three-month deployment to Southeast Asia in support of Cooperation Afloat Readiness and Training 2009. While deployed, the crew will train with numerous Southeast Asian navies to foster relations in support of the global war on terrorism.

"This deployment should be both educational and fun not only because we are going to make a lot of port visits, but because we are going to train with other navies whom have different skill sets than us," said Ensign Sean McDonnell, Russell's combat information center officer. "Hopefully, we will be able to have sailors go to other navies' ships and see their daily operations while some of their sailors visit our ship," he said.

Russell, along with Destroyer Squadron 31 and multinational forces, will conduct seamanship events, helicopter operations and visit, boarding, search and seizure operations, and various maritime exercises. The ship is scheduled to return in late October.