SINGAPORE (NNS) -- The George Washington Carrier Strike Group (GWCSG) arrived in Singapore for a goodwill port visit, June 26.
This marks the fifth visit to the "Lion City" since USS George Washington (CVN 73) relieved the now-decommissioned USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) as the U.S. Navy's forward-deployed aircraft carrier in 2008.
"This has always been a favorite port of mine and I'm sure the crew will share the same sentiments once they experience the rich culture this seafaring city has to offer," said Capt. Greg Fenton, George Washington's commanding officer. "I am excited to be here once again and we all look forward to fostering relationships and building new friendships with the welcoming people of Singapore."
During George Washington's visit, the ship's Morale, Welfare and Recreation's afloat recreation team arranged 14 tours and the ship's Command Religious Ministries department organized nine community relation (COMREL) projects.
"Our junior Sailors volunteer their free time to participate in these COMRELs," said Religious Programs Specialist 1st Class Brandon Reed from Seattle, Washington. "I look forward to interact with Singaporeans and for our Sailors to do something meaningful. Participating in COMRELs creates lasting impressions on the foreign nationals with whom our Sailors are able to meet, greet and create friendships with. I hope that the work we do will add to the rich Singaporean history."
Singapore's nickname "The Lion City" is derived from its Sanskrit name "singa" (lion) "pura" (city). The city has a rich historical record in the name of "Pu-luo-chung" or "island at the end of a peninsula" and "Temasek" or "Sea Town" dating back to 1298. Singapore is a den rich with murals and landmarks that tell an abundant chronicle Sailors will have an opportunity to see firsthand.
"I look forward to having breakfast with orangutans and going to Singapore's Universal Studios," said Culinary Specialist Seaman Apprentice Andrew Armstrong, from Latrobe, Pennsylvania. "I never thought I would be able to visit Singapore prior to enlisting in the Navy. It is good that we visit numerous ports because we are able to see their culture with our own eyes and we can give a true representation of American culture rather than what is perceived."
The GWCSG consists of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier George Washington and its embarked air wing, Carrier Air Wing 5; Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruisers USS Antietam (CG 54) and USS Shiloh (CG 67); and Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Kidd (DDG 100).
The GWCSG is on patrol in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations to support security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.