Cmdr. Kieran Twomey observes as Bonhomme Richard moors in Port Kelang, Malaysia.
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Bonhomme Richard Arrives in Malaysia for Port Visit

Story Number: NNS100309-03, By Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group Public Affairs

PORT KELANG, Malaysia (NNS) -- USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) arrived in Port Kelang, Malaysia March 9, for a scheduled visit to the country's capital, Kuala Lumpur, about 24 miles northeast of the port town.

The ship's 2,400 Sailors and Marines are part of the Bonhomme Richard Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and embarked 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), currently transiting the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations during the last half of a western Pacific deployment.

The San Diego-based ARG/MEU recently entered 7th Fleet after completing four months of maritime security operations in 5th Fleet.

"Our Sailors and Marines are looking forward to some well-earned liberty in Kuala Lumpur and being good ambassadors of the United States to the people of Malaysia," said Capt. John Funk, Bonhomme Richard commanding officer.

More than 70 Sailors and Marines are scheduled to volunteer their free time at a day care center for disabled children. Service members will spend three days painting, completing light grounds work and interacting with local youngsters.

"We are looking forward to reaching out to our friends in Malaysia and supporting them," said Lt. Cmdr. Joseph "Dan" Reardon, Bonhomme Richard chaplain and lead community service coordinator. "This presents a great way to show our concern and care for disabled children."

While transiting 7th Fleet, the ARG/MEU reports to Commander, Amphibious Force 7th Fleet Rear Adm. Richard Landolt, who is headquartered in Okinawa, Japan.

In addition to Bonhomme Richard, the ARG consists of the command element, Commander, Amphibious Squadron 7; amphibious transport dock ship USS Cleveland (LPD 7); amphibious dock landing ship USS Rushmore (LSD 47); Tactical Air Control Squadron 12, Det. 1; Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 23, Det. 3; Assault Craft Unit (ACU) 1, Det. B; ACU 5, Det. F; Beachmaster Unit 1, Det. B; and Fleet Surgical Team 9.

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