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PIA Press Release
2009/06/19

Aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan to return to Iloilo

Iloilo City (19 June) -- Eighteen Sailors from the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) will arrive in Iloilo June 21st to assist personnel from the Philippine Navy in a renovation project at Pavia National High School.

The carrier and its crew will be in international waters off of Panay Island on the one-year anniversary of Typhoon Frank. In June 2008, the carrier, five ships of its support group and more than a dozen helicopters assisted the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) in providing relief to Panay, delivering more than 519,000 lbs. of rice, fresh water and medical supplies via helicopter to residents affected by the devastating storm.

"In more than 27 years of naval service, I've never been a part of a more rewarding mission," said Capt. Kenneth Norton, Ronald Reagan's commanding officer.

The sailors will fly to Iloilo in a C-2A Greyhound cargo aircraft to paint and lay concrete at Pavia National High School.

The visit is a homecoming of sorts for Ronald Reagan Sailor Petty Officer Grace Geroche, an Iloilo native and 2002 Pavia graduate. Geroche will be one of the sailors working on the renovation project at her former high school.

After the completion of the project, the sailors will fly back to USS Ronald Reagan and continue their scheduled Western Pacific/Indian Ocean deployment.

Meanwhile, the Regional Disaster Coordinating Council in coordination with Task Force Bangon Panay will commemorate the one-year anniversary of Typhoon Frank with a mass on Monday, June 22, 2009 at the Iloilo Grand Hotel. After the mass, a joint RDCC VI and Task Force Bangon Panay meeting will be held. During the meeting, the different agencies involved in Bangon Panay will present their report on the various rehabilitation projects they have undertaken. (US Embassy/PIA 6) [top]

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