Toughness, resilience: part of our heritage

Adm. Scott Swift
Commentary Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet

Editor’s note: The following message was shared by Adm. Scott Swift on the Pacific Fleet (PACFLT) Facebook page, Aug. 24.

This week has been a very difficult one for PACFLT and our Navy family.

I’ve just departed Yokosuka after meetings with Forward Deployed Naval Forces command triads, with the families of USS John S. McCain, and with the crew of USS Fitzgerald.

Earlier in the week I went aboard USS John S. McCain after it arrived in Singapore and talked with many of its crew as well. I visited with the injured McCain Sailors in the hospital and met with the families that had traveled to Singapore to meet the ship in what they expected to be much happier circumstances.

In talking with each of those groups, what was very apparent to me was the toughness and the resilience that makes our Sailors and families so special. They are fighters. In the wake of two tragic collisions, our hearts may be broken but our will remains strong. The Pacific Fleet has faced adversity before in our history, and no matter the challenge, we have overcome it.

The toughness and resilience that I saw in full display by Pacific Fleet Sailors and their families in both Singapore and Yokosuka is part of our heritage.

The work our Navy does in this part of the world is critical for the nation and the region. For decades, our Navy has helped provide the security and stability at sea in our area of responsibility to the benefit of all, and we continue to do just that today. We are the most capable Navy on earth, and PACFLT makes up nearly 60 percent of that Navy.

We will determine the causes of these incidents, we will learn from them and we will apply those lessons. What changes need to be made will be made. We have the full support of and forceful backup from our Chief of Naval Operations to provide the resources and the oversight necessary to fulfill this pressing requirement.

As much or more so than any of my 34 predecessors as PACFLT Commander, I have the utmost confidence in you, the Sailors of Pacific Fleet.

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Category: News