From USS Porter Public Affairs
NASSAU, The Bahamas - The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) conducted a scheduled port visit in Nassau, The Bahamas, April 3-7. The ship’s arrival marked the first time a U.S. Navy vessel has visited The Bahamas since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
The port visit began with a high-level reception aboard Porter co-hosted by Cmdr. Christopher Petro and the Chargé d’Affaires of the U.S. Embassy, Usha Pitts. “This port visit is a wonderful illustration of our partnership,” Pitts said during the reception. “We have to remember that some country will patrol the ocean, will make a show of force, and will hold other countries accountable for their behavior. I thank God it is the U.S. doing it and that we have the tools, like USS Porter, and the personnel, like the Sailors on this ship, doing it.” Porter recently completed maritime operations in the North Sea and a task force exercise certification off the coast of the U.S. This port visit provided an opportunity to strengthen an important bilateral partnership between maritime neighbors, which is essential to regional stability. “As a Forward Deployed Naval Forces-Europe ship, it is an incredible opportunity for the Porter crew to cross the Atlantic and enjoy the beautiful Bahamas,” said Cmdr. Christopher Petro, Porter’s commanding officer. “After completing demanding maritime operations, training and certifications, the crew and I are eagerly looking forward to experiencing the warm Bahamian hospitality and enjoying the beautiful beaches, culture and local sights of The Bahamas.” Minister of National Security the Hon. Wayne Munroe attended the reception and offered remarks to the crew and guests. “We talk about friends, but I’d like to think that the United States and The Bahamas are really in a relationship where you are our big brother,” Munroe said. “Next year we will celebrate 50 years of independence, and you celebrate 246 years of independence. That makes you quite a bit older than us. We accept you as our big brother, and standing on a vessel like this… it’s kind of good to have a big brother like you.” Upon arrival in The Bahamas, Porter Sailors volunteered in the local community with The Bahamas Red Cross Society, assisting with the Community Resilience and Food Security Pilot Program. Sailors worked on raised garden beds and planted vegetable seeds that will support a feeding program serving over 125 Bahamians daily. Porter, forward deployed to Rota, Spain, is currently operating in the U.S. 2nd Fleet area of operations. Porter is one of four U.S. Navy destroyers based in Rota, Spain, and assigned to commander, Task Force 65 in support of NATO’s Integrated Air and Missile Defense architecture. Forward Deployed Naval Forces-Europe ships have the flexibility to operate throughout the waters of Europe and Africa, from the Cape of Good Hope to the Arctic Circle, demonstrating their mastery of the maritime domain.