Dunford Greets Sailors, Visits USS Barry in Japan


Hours before the USS Barry headed out to sea today, the highest ranking U.S. military officer paid a visit to this forward-deployed ship.

Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, visits the USS Barry in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. The Barry is an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer deployed in the 7th Fleet area of operations to support stability and security missions in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. DoD photo by Lisa Ferdinando
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, visits the USS Barry in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. The USS Barry is forward-deployed in the 7th Fleet area of operations to support security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. DoD photo by Lisa Ferdinando
Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, visits the USS Barry in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. The Barry is an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer deployed in the 7th Fleet area of operations to support stability and security missions in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. DoD photo by Lisa Ferdinando
USS Barry Salute
The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, visits the USS Barry in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. The USS Barry is forward-deployed in the 7th Fleet area of operations to support security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region. DoD photo by Lisa Ferdinando
Photo By: Lisa Ferdinando
VIRIN: 160907-D-BN624-001

As enlisted sailors in their dress whites saluted, Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, stepped aboard to meet with some of the 300 sailors stationed aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer.

Dunford, who was accompanied by the commander of U.S. 7th Fleet, Navy Vice Adm. Joseph P. Aucoin, toured various sections of the ship and thanked sailors for all they do in safeguarding regional and global security.

"It’s a great boost for morale here," said the ship's executive officer, Navy Cmdr. David A. Huljack. The visit, he noted, came at a perfect time, as the crew members wrapped up their work at port and prepared to head back out to sea.

'Great Sailors Doing Great Things'

In January, the USS Barry, the fourth U.S. naval ship named after Commodore John Barry, left Norfolk, Virginia -- its homeport of more than 20 years -- to be forward-deployed to the 7th Fleet area of operations.

Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, speaks with crew members aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Barry in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. DoD photo by Army Sgt. James K. McCann
Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, speaks with Navy Cmdr. Jennifer Eaton, commanding officer of the USS Barry, and other crew members during a visit aboard the ship in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. DoD photo by Army Sgt. James K. McCann
Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, speaks with crew members aboard the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Barry in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. DoD photo by Army Sgt. James K. McCann
Crew Conversation
Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, speaks with Navy Cmdr. Jennifer Eaton, commanding officer of the USS Barry, and other crew members during a visit aboard the ship in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. DoD photo by Army Sgt. James K. McCann
Photo By: Sgt. James K. McCann
VIRIN: 160907-D-SW162-124

The USS Barry and its crew are supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, Huljack explained. The visit provided Dunford and Aucoin the opportunity to see "great sailors doing great things throughout the ship," he added.

"We've been very, very busy in port here," he said. "This marks the culmination of that effort and you can just see it in the sailors' faces that they are thrilled to show off their ship to the chairman and the fleet."

In addition, the crew was able to discuss the ship's capabilities and what it brings to the Asia-Pacific region, he said.

"It was a fantastic visit," Huljack said.

The chairman traveled to Japan after attending the chiefs of defense conference in Manila, Philippines, where he highlighted the importance of the Asia-Pacific region in regional and global peace and security.

Navy Cmdr. Jennifer Eaton, commanding officer of the USS Barry, an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer, introduces Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to a crew member during a visit aboard the ship in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. DoD photo by Army Sgt. James K. McCann
Navy Cmdr. Jennifer Eaton, commanding officer of the USS Barry, an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer, introduces Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to a crew member during a visit aboard the ship in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. DoD photo by Army Sgt. James K. McCann
Navy Cmdr. Jennifer Eaton, commanding officer of the USS Barry, an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer, introduces Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to a crew member during a visit aboard the ship in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. DoD photo by Army Sgt. James K. McCann
Official Introduction
Navy Cmdr. Jennifer Eaton, commanding officer of the USS Barry, an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer, introduces Marine Corps Gen. Joe Dunford, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to a crew member during a visit aboard the ship in Yokosuka, Japan, Sept. 7, 2016. DoD photo by Army Sgt. James K. McCann
Photo By: Sgt. James K. McCann
VIRIN: 160907-D-SW162-262

Aboard the USS Barry: 'Your Own Little Family'

Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Edilson Lazo, a boatswain's mate, was one of the sailors in his dress whites who welcomed the high-level visitors. A native of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, Lazo has been on the USS Barry for three-and-a-half years.

Lazo said he enjoys life on the ship and being in Japan.

"I like being forward-deployed because you come back to port a lot and it’s just a different atmosphere [than a deployment]," he said.

Lazo said he especially enjoys the camaraderie with his shipmates.

"It's fun," he said. "It’s your own little family."

(Follow Lisa Ferdinando on Twitter: @FerdinandoDoD)