5th Fleet Leadership Visit Nimitz, William P. Lawrence
By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jason Behnke, USS Nimitz Public Affairs
USS NIMITZ, At Sea - Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, U.S. 5th Fleet, Combined Maritime Forces, Vice Adm. John W. Miller visited the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz (CVN 68) to tour the ship and hold an all-hands call with Sailors, Aug. 13.

During the all-hands call in the hangar bay, Miller opened by thanking the crew for their professionalism while on liberty in Bahrain.

He also addressed key issues affecting the entire military, such as sexual assault.

“All of us that have been in uniform since 9/11 have enjoyed the respect, admiration and trust of the American people,” said Miller. “The one thing that could change that is if the American people come to the conclusion that we create an environment that tolerates sexual assault.”

He added that although Nimitz and the military in general have robust programs dealing with sexual assault prevention, every service member has a responsibility to put an end to it.

“At the end of the day each of us, every single one of us has to be onboard,” Miller said.

He emphasized the importance of bystander intervention and instructed shipmates to help Sailors who may have had too much to drink or who are about to make bad choices.

Miller also noted a common link between many sexual assault and suicide cases in the Navy.

“If you look at the sexual assault or suicide statistics, one of the things you’ll find is often times alcohol is a contributing factor,” said Miller.

Nimitz has been in the 5th Fleet area of responsibility (AOR) since June. Miller also thanked the crew for their months of hard work and contributions made in support of Operation Enduring Freedom thus far.

“I know it’s hard,” said Miller. “If you’re up on the flight deck, down in engineering, or you’re in one of the launch and arresting gear spaces, it’s an extremely challenging work environment and you’re doing a magnificent job.”

Prior to embarking Nimitz, Miller and Force Command Master Chief James E. DeLozier also visited USS William P. Lawrence (DDG 110). While aboard the guided-missile destroyer, Miller and DeLozier conducted all-hands calls with the officers, Chiefs, and Sailors to commend them for a great job on deployment. Miller then had lunch with the crew and paid tribute to the legacy of Adm. William P. Lawrence.

Nimitz Strike Group (NSG) is comprised of Nimitz, embarked Carrier Strike Group 11, Carrier Air Wing 11 and Destroyer Squadron 23. NSG is deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet AOR conducting maritime security operations, theater security cooperation efforts and support missions for Operation Enduring Freedom.
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