Sailors and Marines aboard USS Harry S. Truman
(CVN 75) hosted Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Jonathan Greenert, his wife Mrs. Darleen Greenert, and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) (AW/NAC) Mike Stevens for a Thanksgiving visit, Nov. 28-29.
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Adm. Jonathan Greenert cuts a Thanksgiving cake with CS2 Jose Arsenault.
During the visit, the CNO and MCPON celebrated Thanksgiving dinner with Truman
“It was an honor and a privilege to eat with the CNO,” said AO1(AW/SW) Ryan Smith, Truman’s
Sailor of the Year. “I never expected to sit down with the Chief of Naval Operations for chow on the mess decks on Thanksgiving Day. He asked about the morale on the ship, and said everyone seemed to be in good spirits and motivated. He seemed like a very down-to-earth individual, very interested in junior Sailors, and how everything is going in his Navy.”
Truman’s Supply Department prepared the meal for the crew and their guests.
“It was great,” said CS1(SW) Carla Angus, aft galley captain. “My guys did a wonderful job. I couldn’t have done it without the culinary specialists and food service attendants. It turned out well. Both night and day shift woke up to prepare the meal. It’s a blessing, even though we’re out to sea, everyone came out and wished us happy Thanksgiving, and we were doing the same. It was good to put a smile on their faces.”
CWO4 Brian Armstrong, Truman’s
food service officer, echoed Angus’ statements. “Thanksgiving is a day to reflect on the things one is grateful for,” he emphasized. “And I am grateful for being able to bring a traditional home-cooked meal to the crew.”
According to Lt. Cmdr. Michael Tucker, Harry S. Truman’s principal assistant for services, he saw it as a way to give back to the crew.
“This was a great opportunity to show our appreciation to all the Sailors and Marines on board for all the hard work they do,” he said. “Our Supply team did a great job in serving up a meaningful meal to everyone.”
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MCPON(AW/NAC) Mike Stephens signs a CPO 365 workbook while having a Thanksgiving Day dinner with Truman Sailors.
Prior to the meal, the CNO and MCPON spoke to the crew during an all-hands call on the flight deck.
“It is wonderful to be here to have a conversation with you, to hear back from you” MCPON Stevens said. “I heard you had about 350 or so Sailors advance from this last exam. Congratulations to all those selectees. Just as importantly though, I’d like to tell those Sailors who didn’t advance to keep your head up and keep pressing forward because your time is coming. You’ll get your opportunity.”
Adm. Greenert talked to the crew about how important aircraft carriers are to the U.S. and the Navy. “They are the icon for American sea power,” Adm. Greenert explained. “They are the symbol, and they are you guys, and you guys deliver.”
Mrs. Greenert closed out the all hands call with Thanksgiving wishes for the crew. “Today is Thanksgiving, and in my family we count our blessings,” she said. “When I look around I see all my blessings and all my husband’s blessing in front of me. So please extend to your families the warmest appreciations you can from me.”
Commanding Officer, Capt. Bob Roth, was very appreciative of CNO and MCPON’s visit. “We were extremely honored to host CNO and MCPON, and very thankful they took the time to travel all the way out here to spend time with our Sailors and Marines,” Capt. Roth said. “They are two of the busiest people in the Navy, and it meant a lot to the crew that they chose to spend their Thanksgiving with us out at sea in the Middle East.”
Rear Adm. Kevin Sweeney, Commander, Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, echoed Capt. Roth’s sentiments.
“We were very fortunate to have the Navy’s top leaders travel out here to spend Thanksgiving with the Sailors and Marines of Harry S. Truman
Strike Group,” Rear Adm. Sweeney said. “I know our young men and women enjoyed the visit, and deeply appreciated having this special opportunity to spend the holiday talking and eating with CNO and MCPON. I’m sure it’s something they won’t soon forget.”
By MC2 Brandon Parker, USS Harry S. Truman
(CVN 75) Public Affairs