USS COMSTOCK, At Sea
– Sailors and Marines aboard amphibious dock landing ship USS Comstock (LSD 45) celebrated Independence Day with a pair of first-time events.
The day started with the inaugural Comstock Independence Day 5K run sponsored by the ship’s Morale, Welfare, and Recreation (MWR) committee. The run involved eight laps around the course, leading participants from the flight deck, down to the well deck and then a climb up a series of ramps back to the flight deck. All who participated were entered into a raffle to win one of 15 $20 gift cards to the ship’s store.
“We decided it would be a good way to celebrate the 4th of July,” said Ensign Sam Covert, the event coordinator. “It went well. We had a good turnout and garnered a lot of interest from both the blue and green side. It was a good way for Marines and Sailors aboard to interact, compete, and really bring team Comstock together.”
Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Bradford Huff, assigned to Combat Logistics Battalion (CLB) 13, finished the 5K run in first place with a final time of 21:35.
“It was a good race,” said Huff. “There were a lot of good runners out there; I just tried hard and did my best.”
Lance Cpl. Alexei Bastidas Tcherednichenko, assigned to Battalion Landing Team, 1st Battalion, 1st Marines (BLT 1/1), Bravo Company, celebrated a much different type of first. Bastidas Tcherednichenko, whose mother is Russian and father is Ecuadorian, participated in the 5K run as part of his first Independence Day as a naturalized U.S. citizen.
In the afternoon, Comstock’s Chief Petty Officer’s Association treated the ship to a steel beach picnic, complete with halibut steaks, barbecue chicken and steak, side dishes and desserts.
“It was an overall great day, and that’s typical of the Comstock crew. Everyone here has very high spirits and very good morale. That’s the way we do ‘it’ on Comstock,” said Command Master Chief Michael Lucas.
The day’s events were concluded with the MWR committee serving nachos and sodas for all personnel to enjoy on the mess decks.
“We wanted the 4th of July events to have as much of a close-to-home feeling as possible,” said Lt. Cmdr. Scott Tasin, Comstock’s executive officer. “We started the day with the 5K and ended with a barbecue and picnic just like some of our family members back on the home front.”
Comstock, as part of the Boxer Amphibious Ready Group (BOXARG), is underway supporting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility.
BOXARG consists of amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4), amphibious transport dock ship USS Green Bay (LPD 20) and Comstock. The ARG is comprised of more than 4,000 personnel with approximately 1,800 Sailors and 2,200 embarked Marines from 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit.