USS Frank Cable (AS 40) sits at anchor in Sattahip Bay as USS Albuquerque (SSN 706) approaches for tended support, March 10. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Corey Hensley)

SATTAHIP, Thailand - The submarine tender USS Frank Cable (AS 40) anchored off Sattahip, March 9, as part of its extended patrol in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations.

Frank Cable's current mission while on deployment is to improve relations with navies in the region. The expectation for this particular port visit will focus on cooperation between the U.S. Navy and Royal Thai Navy, and will involve participation by the crew in community service (COMSERV) events.

"Our mission will improve our ability to operate together so in the event of a situation where the Thai and U.S Navies have to operate together, " said Capt. Pete Hildreth, commanding officer of Frank Cable.

According to Hildreth, the ship will also carry out her normal mission of submarine maintenance, as she is scheduled to take the USS Albuquerque (SSN 706) alongside.

"Another goal for this visit is to provide support for a submarine and finish the required repairs," said Hildreth. "And making sure that the engagements with the Royal Thai Navy go well, and for us to execute a good port visit."

There was a lot of excitement among Sailors onboard as the ship approached Sattahip. For many, this was the port they were looking forward to most during this underway. Logistics Specialist 3rd Class Logan Freitag said that he has big plans for his first time in the country.

"Between all the sea stories and the fact that I can ride an elephant or pet a tiger, who wouldn't be excited," said Freitag. "I want to ride an elephant, hike though some more jungles, as I did in Malaysia, and eat some good food."

Those on board who have been to Thailand before say there are many activities for Sailors to enjoy, including a large nightlife scene, plenty of exotic tours, and lots of inexpensive shopping and dining. According to Logistics Specialist 2nd Class Courtney Montgomery there is more to do and experience than just run of the mill tourism.

"I'm going to do the soccer /basketball community relations event," said Montgomery. "I like going to high schools, and community relations are good because we can show them that we are regular people."

Hildreth said being involved with the people and culture in Thailand will help build solid relationships between our countries. Sailors can do their part as individuals just by helping out the local community.

"I think it's a benefit for the crew from a liberty standpoint as well as to our government," said Hildreth. "I think a lot of us joined the Navy to see the world, and a port like Thailand is a good place to do that."

Frank Cable conducts maintenance and support of submarines and surface vessels deployed in 7th Fleet.