– Master Chief Petty Officer of the
Navy (MCPON) Rick D. West visited and spoke with Sailors on
board Commander Fleet Activities Yokosuka (CFAY) April 18-19.
During his visit, MCPON toured ships
and facilities at CFAY, spent time with the Sailors assigned to the
base and conducted an all-hands call at CFAY’s Benny Decker Theater.
West visited many of the forward-deployed destroyers, including USS
McCambell (DDG 85), USS Mustin (DDG 89), USS Curtis Wilbur (DDG 54)
and USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62). He also led a CPO 365 run with CFAY
chief petty officers (CPO) and CPO board eligible first class petty
During the all-hands call, more than 600 Sailors packed into the
base theater to listen to West’s message and ask him questions.
“Coming out to Yokosuka, Japan is one of the highlights of my
travelling, because it was my first port visit as a young Sailor,”
said West. “The one regret that I take away from 32 years of Navy
service is that I have never been able to do a tour in Japan.”
West spoke about the importance of the forward-deployed Sailors and
their missions throughout the 7th fleet AOR.
“The job you do everyday has an effect all the way up the chain,”
said West. “Every job you do includes that team work necessary for
us to complete our mission.”
West then dedicated most of his time to answering the questions
asked by the enlisted Sailors present. He ended the all-hands call
by calling up two volunteers to motivate the crowd by doing “burpee”
push-ups and having their shipmates participate in a motivating “HOOYAH!”
Hospital Corpsman Seaman Horace McCollin, assigned to U.S. Naval
Hospital Yokosuka, was one of the volunteers West called on.
“I was nervous at first, but once I got a sense for how
down-to-earth MCPON was, I volunteered,” said McCollin. “Having the
opportunity to hear what he had to say, and participate in the
motivation was an awesome experience.”
West stressed his overall appreciation and satisfaction with the
“The Sailors in Yokosuka are motivated. They really have a sense of
accomplishment and a sense of the mission out here,” said West.
“Overall, it has been a great visit, and I could not be more proud
to be the enlisted rep for these Sailors out here.”