SEALIFT

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August 2007

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Europe News

Sealift Logistics Command Europe said farewell to MSC fleet replenishment oiler USNS Patuxent, its master Capt. Mike Flanagan and its crew in July as the ship wrapped up its fourmonth deployment to the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations.

During their time in theater, Patuxent and its crew participated in three multinational military exercises hosting maritime interdiction operation boarding teams and enabling the teams to exercise their visit, board, search and seizure techniques as well as to provide logistics support and nearly 3 million gallons of fuel to 13 nations, including the United States, Great Britain, Spain, Portugal, Greece, Turkey, Germany, Russia, Denmark, Canada, Morocco, Algeria and The Netherlands.

Patuxent and Maritime Prepositioning Ship USNS LCPL Roy M. Wheat, from MPS Squadron One, participated in the June 4 to 15 multinational military exercise Baltic Operations 2007. BALTOPS, the region's largest military exercise, is held annually in the Baltic Sea. This year, 25 ships, two submarines and aircraft from 11 nations participated in the two-week event.

During the exercise, training focused on improving communication and interoperability during maritime military operations, maritime interdiction operations, and search and rescue missions.

"Playing a part in BALTOPS '07 provides a unique opportunity for NATO combatants to develop familiarity with our merchant marine capabilities," said MPS Squadron One Commander Navy Capt. Clayton Saunders.

Following its work in BALTOPS, USNS Wheat made a port visit to Estonia, arriving in the capital city of Tallinn June 15, nearly one year after the ship first visited the country.

While in Tallinn, Wheat's civilian master Capt. Peter Grealy and Saunders welcomed U.S. Ambassador to Estonia Stanley Davis Phillips and Estonian Chief of Defense Army Col. N. Vali aboard the ship for a tour June 19.

SEALOGEUR says goodbye to Chief Staff Officer Navy Cmdr. Bill Snyder as he and his family depart Naples for his next assignment pursuing a graduate degree at the Naval War College in Newport, R.I. SEALOGEUR also bids a fond farewell to Navy Yeoman 2nd Class Aaron Smith. Smith leaves the command to be a watch stander in the U.S.-controlled demilitarized zone between North and South Korea.

The command's operations department welcomes aboard Navy Lt. Craig Ruhs, who reports to SEALOGEUR from guided missile destroyer USS O'Kane based in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.