MALAYSIA – U.S. 7th Fleet flagship USS Blue Ridge (LCC 19) completed a four-day port visit to Port Klang June 7.
Blue Ridge is currently on patrol in the South Indo-Asia Pacific region, engaging allies and strengthening partnerships.
Sailors and Marines were afforded the opportunity to experience the local culture and participate in several community service projects.
Servicemembers volunteered their off-duty time at Rumah Anak Nur Qaseh Home for Children, Calvary Land Social Home and at various schools by donating books, playing games and helping children with homework.
“Volunteering at the children’s home was an amazing opportunity for me and we were able to show the kids some good things the U.S. has to offer, like kindness and friendship,” said Yeoman 3rd Class Joe Hollen. “Plus, I had a lot of fun, too.”
A friendly soccer game was played between Blue Ridge and Royal Malaysian Navy sailors, encouraging camaraderie and good sportsmanship.
“I really enjoy having the opportunity to meet foreign sailors and playing soccer with them,” said Boatswain’s Mate 2nd Class Mandela Gbieor. “Even though we’re from different parts of the world, it’s good to see the many things we have in common.”
Blue Ridge's Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) Committee organized visits to local markets, theme parks and cultural landmarks of Malaysia.
“I didn’t know much about Malaysia before we arrived,” said Logistics Specialist 1st Class Vanessa Garciavargas. “Kuala Lumpur turned out to be a fantastic city with a lot of fun to offer, and MWR helped to facilitate some outstanding opportunities that I will never forget.”
Blue Ridge has been forward deployed to Yokosuka, Japan for nearly 34 years. As the flagship for Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet, Vice Adm. Scott H. Swift, Blue Ridge is vital in forging partnerships in the 7th Fleet area of operations.