BRISBANE, Australia (July 25, 2017) – Sailors, assigned to the forward-deployed Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Shiloh (CG 67), participated in a community relations (COMREL) project at the Aboriginal and Islander Independent Community School (Murri School), July 25.
The Sailors played basketball with the students and were treated to a traditional aboriginal dance.
"The Murri School was created in 1986, when Aboriginal Elders in the Brisbane community came together to start the school to give our children an opportunity to succeed in education as they saw the State system was letting our kids down," said Jeff Locke, community engagement officer of Murri School. "We share a lot in common with Native American culture, our reverence for the earth and the life upon it. I’m glad Shiloh Sailors had an opportunity to experience it with us."
The Murri School has approximately 240 students from southern Queensland aboriginal communities.
Shiloh’s Sailors spoke with some of the older students about career paths after graduation.
"I joined the U.S. Navy three months after graduating high school," said Senior Chief Culinary Specialist Joyell Ramos, of Annapolis, Maryland, while addressing the students. "Now I am a Senior Chief in the United States Navy. If you focus on your goals, nothing can stop you from achieving them."
Ramos’ talk with the students was especially meaningful to a few of the girls who intend to join the Royal Australian Defence Forces after graduation.
Community relation projects provide an opportunity for positive interaction between U.S. Sailors and the local people in the area the ship is visiting. Shiloh is on patrol with Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 5 in support of security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific.