USS Frank Cable Visits the Philippines

The submarine tender USS Frank Cable (AS 40) arrived in the Republic of the Philippines for a scheduled port visit March 22.

“Any chance we have to engage with our partners in the region is important,” said Capt. Pete Hildreth, Frank Cable’s commanding officer. “A good, productive relationship between our countries contributes to regional stability.”

Hildreth mentioned that the crew should take this opportunity in Cebu to participate in community service (COMSERV) projects as they become available. This visit also provides the crew a chance to experience the sights and culture of this port. Some Filipino-American Sailors aboard Cable will be able to visit family nearby as well.

“I’m definitely going to see my family and maybe visit the mall or the beach; you can even go swimming with whale sharks,” said Logistics Specialist Seaman Athena Ramona Espina. “The good thing about Cebu is nothing is too far away, everything is close because the island isn’t that big.”

Espina, a Sailor assigned to the Frank Cable, grew up in Cebu and visits her family there often. Even though she was born in California, Espina still considers Cebu to be her home.

According to Espina, Cebu has a lot of interesting history and culture for Sailors to experience. She was excited to hear of Frank Cable’s visit to the oldest city in the Republic of the Philippines.

“The Philippines was colonized by Spaniards for over 300 years, so there’s a lot of culture the Spaniards left behind, which you’ll get to see if you go around Cebu,” Espina said. “Everyone’s very close and family oriented. Cebu’s atmosphere is cozy and I feel at home.”

Machinist’s Mate 2nd Class Ian Go is another Sailor from the Cebu area. He agreed with Espina that it is definitely a place worth looking forward to visiting.

“Take this opportunity, it’s a once in a lifetime chance,” said Go. “The people are very nice and Cebu is just a great place.”

Go is looking forward to Cebu, not only for the liberty, but getting the chance to see his wife, whom he has not seen since the birth of their child.

This visit to Cebu is Frank Cable’s third port visit since its recent departure from Guam, after an engagement with the Royal Malaysian Navy in the port of Sepangar, and repair work alongside the Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Albuquerque (SSN 706) in Sattahip, Thailand.

Frank Cable is one of two submarine tenders in the U.S. Navy, conducting maintenance and support of submarines and surface vessels deployed in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility.

Naval Today Staff, March 25, 2013