USS Dwight D. Eisenhower Hosts Reception for Spanish Dignitaries

USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) (Ike) hosted a reception for Spanish dignitaries during a scheduled port visit to Palma de Mallorca, Spain, July 5.

The reception provided the opportunity for the U.S. to show the partnership between the United States and Spain. Among the guests were President Jose Ramon Bauza of the Autonomous Community of the Balearic Islands, the U.S Ambassador to Spain, Alan D. Solomont, Rear Adm. Michael Manazir, commander Strike Group 8, and Capt. Marcus Hitchcock, Ike’s commanding officer.

The program began with a brief welcome from Manazir which was followed by the history and explanation of the relationship between the U.S. and Spain from Solomont.

“We have been enormously impressed with the close working relationship that exists between all of the services but especially between the United States Navy and the Spanish Navy,” said Solomont. “One of the things we share with this country is a belief in the importance and the power of democracy. Democracy is younger in Spain but that does not in any way weaken the connection that it represents between our countries.”

The reception was held in the hangar bay, where food and drinks were served to more than 200 guests including members from the Spanish army, navy and police force

“We are absolutely thrilled that we are able to host the reception for the beautiful Isle of Mallorca and the wonderful city of Palma,” said Hitchcock.Even more phenomenal than USS Dwight D. Eisenhower are the American Sailors aboard the Ike and I hope you get to meet the men and women that man the ship.”

After the official program was concluded, tours of the ship and its aircraft were given to the guests by Sailors from the various departments aboard Ike. Sailors also had the opportunity to mingle with the guests and had new experiences that would fill their memory of Spain for years to come.

“The experience was incredible and it gave me a great sense of pride for what we do, as far as being ambassadors for the U.S.,” said Senior Chief Navy Career Counselor (AW/SW) Melinda Reaves. “They were very appreciative to have us here and were excited to be on board. I really enjoyed the interaction and they really made me proud to be a part of this great Navy. The Ike and all the Sailors on Ike represented very well and I could tell our guests were very impressed.”

Solomont concluded with a toast: “I ask everybody to raise their glass and toast the long history that exists between the U.S. and Spain, the strength of the friendship that exists today and the future of a relationship between our two great nations that will serve the people so well.”

Naval Today Staff , July 9, 2012