ARABIAN GULF (NNS) — The Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. John Richardson and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Steven Giordano got underway aboard the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71) Dec. 29-30, following the ship's scheduled port call in Jebel Ali, Dubai.
While aboard Theodore Roosevelt, Richardson reenlisted 60 Sailors and recognized them for their dedication and resolve while forward deployed to the 5th Fleet Area of Operations.
"To all the Rough Riders, I just wanted to tell you how much I appreciate and respect everything that you're doing, particularly deployed," said Richardson. "You've come together as a TR family. You're executing your mission. The words of this oath, words like faith and allegiance, bind us all together. We're all one team bounded by our commitment of this oath."
Richardson and Giordano toured several of the ship's spaces and spoke with senior leaders in the Chiefs' Mess and Wardroom.
"These platforms are nothing without each and every one of our Sailors operating and doing extremely well," said Giordano. "To all the Sailors deployed including those here operating forward deployed on the Theodore Roosevelt, thank you. Thank you for being there, Shipmates."
The CNO also addressed the crew over the ship's general announcement system and commended their efforts and sacrifices supporting the nation's mission in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations.
"Theodore Roosevelt Strike Group is here in the gulf, contributing to strikes that will be the final death blow to ISIS," said Richardson. "You have done a magnificent job and everybody is grateful and completely impressed with the level of warfare that you have demonstrated. There should be no safer place in the world than to be a member of the Theodore Roosevelt strike group and there should be more dangerous place in the world than to be on your target list."
More than 5,000 Sailors and Marines serve aboard Theodore Roosevelt with embarked staff from Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 9, Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 23, and the squadrons and staff of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 17.
CVW-17 squadrons include the "Stingers" of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 113, the "Mighty Shrikes" of VFA-94, the "Fighting Redcocks" of VFA-22, the "Checkerboards" of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 312, the "Cougars" of Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 139, the "Sun Kings" of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 116, the "Providers" of Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) 30, the "Indians" of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 6 and the "Battlecats" of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron (HSM) 73.
The Theodore Roosevelt Strike Group's deployment to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations supports Operation Inherent Resolve and signals the continued commitment to defeat and destroy ISIS. In addition to anti-ISIS missions, the strike group is conducting maritime security operations to reassure allies and partners, preserve freedom of navigation and maintain the free flow of commerce.
Theodore Roosevelt left its homeport of San Diego Oct. 6, for a regularly-scheduled deployment to the U.S. 7th and 5th Fleet areas of operations. Roosevelt's last deployment to U.S. 5th Fleet was in 2015 during the ship's homeport shift from Norfolk.