SAN DIEGO –
The crew of the guided-missile destroyer USS Higgins (DDG 76) welcomed U.S. Congressman Bradly Byrne (R-Ala.) for a tour of the ship to help gain a greater understanding of the operational capabilities of some of the Navy’s platforms, Sept. 30.
Rear Adm. Chris Paul, Deputy Commander, Naval Surface Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet hosted the tour for Byrne, who represents Alabama’s first congressional district.
The visit to the ship was part of a cross-country tour to visit naval bases in San Diego and Pensacola, Florida with an aim to become familiar with program, personnel, and readiness issues.
During the tour, Byrne visited the pilot house, combat information center, engineering central control station, and a main engine room and viewed topside weapons systems. Various crew members provided static displays and information on the specific equipment Higgins uses to conduct operations.
“The United States Surface Navy is ever present in foreign maritime theaters. As our technology has advanced throughout the years, our role continues to evolve,” said Cmdr. Nicole Shue, Higgins’ commanding officer. “We remain a premier player in maritime security and our innovative systems and missions reflect that.”
Byrne said he was appreciative of the opportunity to learn more about guided-missile destroyers.
“I’m a tactile learner and having the opportunity to see these systems and meet the Sailors who operate them has been so beneficial,” said Byrne. “I’m grateful for the opportunity to have visited today.”
Byrne said he was also extremely impressed with the level of responsibility given to junior sailors, many of whom were not yet 21 years old.
Higgins, homeported at Naval Base San Diego, is currently in the Basic Phase of training in preparation for future deployments.