On July 28, 2011, 34 students from the Army and Navy Academy in Carlsbad, CA were welcomed aboard USS USS Stockdale (DDG 106) for lunch and a tour of the ship. The students were participants in the military academy’s summer leadership training program. Stan Stockdale, son of the ship’s namesake and Vice President of Institutional Advancement at the Army-Navy Academy, arranged the visit. Mr. Stockdale joined the students on board along with the president of the academy, retired Army Brigadier General Stephen Bliss, and other staff members from the academy.
Upon arrival, the cadets enjoyed a tour of the ship from members of the crew. The tour encompassed key areas on the ship, including the Combat Information Center, the main engine spaces, the pilothouse and the helicopter hangars. Crew members answered the cadets’ questions about ship life, operations and capabilities. For lunch, the students joined the Stockdale crew on the mess decks, which gave them time to ask further questions about the ship, its mission, and career opportunities in the Navy. In the afternoon, the cadets learned about basic damage control and small firearms through hands-on demonstrations by Stockdale crew members. Students tried on firefighting gear and practiced using a Navy Firefighters Thermal Imager (NFTI). A variety of small arms including an M4 rifle, M9 pistol and M16 rifle were on display, and the students reveled in the opportunity to hold the firearms and take pictures.
Members of the crew had a great time sharing their knowledge with the students and introducing them to life aboard a Navy warship. Handling the firearms and talking on headsets in the Combat Information Center were some of the cadets’ favorite parts of the trip. The USS Stockdale crew was delighted to host the Army and Navy Academy cadets for a fun and educational visit, and look forward to hosting them again in the future!