The U.S. Navy Military Sealift Command hospital ship USNS Mercy (T-AH 19) arrived at Apra Harbor, Guam on March 17, while en route for Pacific Partnership 2018 (PP18).
During the visit personnel will conduct mission preparations, routine maintenance, load additional supplies onto the ship, and linking up with mission personnel from the expeditionary fast transport ship USNS Brunswick (T-EPF 6), the second U.S. ship participating in PP18.
“I’m excited to meet up with the USNS Brunswick and get her fully manned and mission ready” said Capt. David Bretz, PP18 mission commander. “We are all happy to be in Guam but even more enthusiastic about getting underway for our first mission stops.”
During PP18, Mercy and Brunswick will conduct visits to different Asia-Pacific nations, increasing the reach and scope of PP18 participants and host nation counterparts to conduct technical expertise exchanges in medical, engineering, humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. Additionally, key leader and community engagement events will allow for direct engagement with local citizens and enhanced relationships with partner nation military and government leadership.
Pacific Partnership, now in its 13th iteration, is the largest annual multilateral humanitarian assistance and disaster relief (HA/DR) preparedness mission conducted in the Indo-Asia-Pacific. PP18’s objective is to enhance regional coordination in areas such as medical readiness and preparedness for man-made and natural disasters.
Pacific Partnership 2018 consists of more than 800 U.S. military personnel stationed worldwide, working side-by-side with host nation counterparts to be better prepared for potential humanitarian aid and disaster response situations.
MC2 Kelsey L. Adams, Pacific Partnership