USS Underwood Remembers Battle of Midway


Sailors and officers of the Oliver Hazard Perry-class guided-missile frigate USS Underwood (FFG 36) commemorated the Battle of Midway with a ceremony and reception aboard the ship while moored in Valparaiso, Chile, June 6.

This year marks the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Midway, which occurred June 4-7, 1942 and was a turning point for the United States in the Pacific Theater of the World War II.

Guests included senior officers of the Chilean navy, the U.S. ambassador to Chile, and the U.S. naval attach to Chile. The ceremony began with a speech by the commanding officer of Underwood, Cmdr. Peter T. Mirisola.

“Courageous, heroic, tenacious and selfless are but a few words that describe the veterans of Midway,” said Mirisola. “These traits are emulated in the fighting spirit and sense of sacrifice that continue in our Navy today – we are a maritime nation, and our freedom will always be tied to the sea, as it has been for more than 235 years. The United State Navy, along with the navies of allied and friendly nations around the world, will continue to serve free and peaceful people everywhere.”

The reception also marked the opening of Underwood’s participation of Southern Seas 2012 in Chile. The U.S. Ambassador to Chile, Alejandro Wolff, was on hand to recognize Underwood’s contributions to the mission in Chile.

“The USS Underwood is here in Chile as part of a broader Southern Seas exercise, which in addition to creating bonds across cultures and fostering friendship and understanding among nations, seeks to enhance interoperability, increase regional stability and build and maintain close regional relationship with countries throughout the region through joint multinational and interagency exchanges and cooperation,” said Wolff.

The speeches by Mirisola and Wolff were followed by a reception held on the flight deck aboard Underwood, as well as a showing of the movie “Midway” and a selection of music from the 1940s.

Underwood is in Chile for a port visit and to conduct a bilateral exercise with the Chilean navy as part of Southern Seas 2012, an annual deployment to Central and South America and the Caribbean to build relationships and enhance hemispheric stability.

U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command and U.S. 4th Fleet (COMUSNAVSO/C4F) supports USSOUTHCOM joint and combined full-spectrum military operations by providing principally sea-based, forward presence to ensure freedom of maneuver in the maritime domain, to foster and sustain cooperative relationships with international partners and to fully exploit the sea as maneuver space in order to enhance regional security and promote peace, stability, and prosperity in the Caribbean, Central and South American regions.

Naval Today Staff , June 10, 2012