ROK cadets, midshipmen visit Wasp during first Sasebo visit in decade

By USS Wasp (LHD 1) Public Affairs | | Nov. 6, 2018

SASEBO, Japan (Nov. 6, 2018) -- The amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD 1) hosted nearly 160 Republic of Korea (ROK) Navy midshipmen and ROK Army and Air Force cadets Nov. 6 at Commander, Fleet Activities Sasebo.  The event marked the first visit in more than a decade since ROK ships had visited Sasebo.

“Today we took them around, and we showed them areas in our well deck, hangar bay, and the flight deck, and talked a little bit about the capabilities Wasp has,” said Lt. Chris Danielczyk, Wasp’s Hangar Officer, who also coordinated the event.  “Those functional areas of the ship are what set us apart from the other ships that we have out here and make us unique.  Showing them some of the specifically different capabilities that we have is what we chose to highlight.”

The midshipmen and cadets arrived as part of a squadron of three ROK naval vessels - made up of the 4,000-ton destroyer Dae Jo Yeong and two amphibious landing vessels, the Cheon Wang Bong and the Il Chul Bong - which were all moored adjacent to the Sasebo base.

“I was so thrilled to see a real ship of the U.S. Navy,” said second year army cadet Jaehee Jo.  “I’ve always envied the U.S. Navy because Korea’s navy is pretty limited… I hope this alliance is ongoing, and personally want to be a part of the U.S.-Korea alliance.”

During the visit, the ROK midshipmen and cadets had the chance to visit with Wasp Sailors, and learn more about life onboard the 44,000-ton warship.

“This was a very special opportunity for me,” said Aviation Support Equipment Technician 2nd Class Jae Song, who speaks Korean as a first language.  “Seeing these young midshipmen and cadets getting ready to experience what I’ve already had the chance to experience was fulfilling, and makes me realize our two countries have a lot in common.” 

Wasp, flagship of Wasp Amphibious Ready Group, is forward deployed to Sasebo Japan as part of the U.S. 7th Fleet.