Friday, October 09, 2009

Carr Sailors Return Home from Deployment

By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class John Suits, Navy Public Affairs Support Element-East

NORFOLK, Va. (NNS) -- Sailors aboard the Oliver Hazard Perry-class guided-missile frigate USS Carr (FFG 52) returned to Naval Station Norfolk, Va., Oct. 7, after a six-month deployment in support of counter-narcotics trafficking and theater security cooperation objectives in the 4th Fleet Area of Responsibility (AOR).

Friends and family members braved the cold and windy climate holding up signs and banners to welcome their Sailors back home after a lengthy deployment.

"I've never seen an event like this before," said Carolyn Hill, a native of Dallas and mother of Lt. j.g. Scott Hill, who is assigned to engineering department aboard Carr. "I'm proud of his service and the fact that he carries on a tradition of service like his dad, who was a CT [Cryptologic Technician] for the Navy."

Carr Sailors got a chance to visit six different ports, including Peru, Costa Rica, Curacao, Columbia, Panama, Aruba and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

Carr and her Sailors were instrumental in the prevention of smuggling of over $40 million in drugs and deterred illegal activities during their deployment.

"The great thing about our Navy is we always prepare our ships and Sailors well," said Cmdr. Eric Ver Hage, Carr's commanding officer. "We went on deployment ready to go, accomplished the mission with class and got everybody home safe and sound."

For some Sailors aboard Carr this marked their first deployment and felt proud about the contributions they made.

"It's good to be home," said Information Systems Technician Seaman (SW) Wayne Faltin, from Lyndenhurst, N.Y. "Words can't explain how I feel because this was a good cruise. This was my first deployment and there was a lot of excitement, anxiety and work done to accomplish the mission."

Carr Sailors take time off to celebrate their homecoming, new beginnings approach for the crew as they prepare for another deployment.

"Today, the cycle starts anew," said Ver Hage. "We begin a new phase in the ship's life, welcome new Sailors coming aboard [for the first time] and deploy 16 months from now."