ARABIAN GULF – Sailors onboard Guided Missile Destroyer USS HIGGINS (DDG 76) took part in a Community Relations (COMREL) project at the Al Noor: Center for Children with Special Needs. Community Relations is a term used for building relationships between the United States and the various communities of the cities and countries visited.
On May 16, 2011 thirteen sailors from HIGGINS visited the center for approximately three hours. Each Sailor from HIGGINS served with a teacher in the different classrooms while learning how the center is helping, training, and teaching over 275 special needs children. LT Stephen Chapman, Chaplain onboard USS HIGGINS was the officer in charge of the planning and execution of the event. He states, “It was a wonderful opportunity for the sailors of HIGGINS to meet these special children who are learning, growing, and striving to overcome the challenges that are before them. Everyone has challenges to overcome and these children showed us the true meaning of courage and determination.”
USS Higgins is assigned to the Carl Vinson Strike Group, home ported in San Diego, California and has worked in the 7th Fleet area of responsibility prior to entering 5th Fleet area of responsibility shortly after leaving San Diego in January of 2011.
Carl Vinson Strike Group consists of flagship USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70), embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17, guided-missile cruisers USS Bunker Hill (CG 52) and USS Lake Champlain (CG 57), and the embarked Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 1. Ships assigned to DESRON 1 include the USS Stockdale (DDG 106), USS Gridley (DDG 101), USS Higgins (DDG 76), USS Rentz (FFG 46), and USS McClusky (FFG 41).