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Chief of Naval Operations visits Commander, Task Force 71 and USS Rafael Peralta

10 November 2022

From Commander, Task Force 71 Public Affairs

Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Mike Gilday visited Commander, Task Force (CTF) 71/Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 15 and Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115) at Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka, Nov. 7.

The visit to CTF 71 was part of the CNO’s trip to Japan to attend the International Fleet Review, which included a stop in Yokosuka to interact with senior leadership and junior Sailors.

"We were honored to have the CNO visit and engage with the staff," said Capt. Walt Mainor, Commander, CTF 71/DESRON 15. "Our Sailors are our number one priority and during the CNO's visit, we were able to talk about how we can ‘Get Real and Get Better,’ meet the mission and take care of our forward deployed Sailors."

During the CNO’s visit, he re-enlisted Sailors from CTF 71/DESRON 15 assigned ships to include Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyers USS Barry (DDG 52), USS Milius (DDG 69), USS Ralph Johnson (DDG 114) and USS Rafael Peralta (DDG 115).

The Sailors who re-enlisted include: Command Master Chief Tshombe Harris, Logistics Specialist Chief Marion Farrales, Sonar Technician (Surface) Chief Jessica Bennett, Boatswain's Mate 2nd Class Benjamin Stier, Electronics Technician 2nd Class Marc Garcia, Gunner's Mate 2nd Class Huntley Rosa, Fire Controlman (Aegis) 3rd Class Anthony Bagnato, Culinary Specialist 3rd Class Rayqoun Strand, Gas Turbine Systems Technician (Electrical) 2nd Class Timothy Hilker, Electricians Mate 1st Class Ryan Richards, Yeoman 2nd Class Akary Lwin, Operations Specialist 2nd Class Roberto Ordaz, Information System Technician 1st Class James Mattos, and Yeoman Seaman Jusenna Vasquez.

"Having the opportunity to re-enlist with the CNO has been a great experience and an honor,” said Fire Controlman (Aegis) 3rd Class Anthony Bagnato, assigned to the USS Milius. “This is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I never would have imagined and I am grateful to have had.”

After the CNO’s visit to CTF 71, he visited the Rafael Peralta while pierside and toured the ship, engaged with Sailors, presented awards and addressed the entire crew over the ship's internal communication system.

Commander, Task Force 71/Destroyer Squadron (DESRON) 15 is the Navy’s largest forward-deployed DESRON and the U.S. 7th fleet’s principal surface force.

U.S. 7th Fleet is the largest forward-deployed fleet in the world, and with the help of a network of alliances and partners from 35 other maritime-nations, the U.S. Navy has operated in the Indo-Pacific region for more than 70 years, providing credible, ready forces to help preserve peace and prevent conflict.

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