Servicemembers stationed at Naval Station Guantanamo received some distinguished visitors as Gen. Laura Richardson, commander of U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM), and members of the SOUTHCOM command team, joined them to celebrate the Thanksgiving holiday.
Coinciding with Richardson’s visit was the arrival of the USNS Comfort hospital ship, which is in the middle of a 7-week deployment as part of Continuing Promise ’22, a humanitarian mission providing medical and veterinary care to populations in select Latin American and the Caribbean countries.
The hospital ship most recently completed a week-long mission in Cartagena, Colombia, where teams provided medical assistance to over 5,000 people, performed approximately 80 surgeries, and affected the lives to more than 25,000 citizens with additional activities and programs.
Richardson and members of the SOUTHCOM team, served Thanksgiving meals to the crew of the USNS Comfort along with servicemembers and their families at the Naval Station.
“I wanted to thank each and every one of you for all that you do,” Richardson said, speaking briefly to those in attendance at the galley prior to enjoying her own meal. “You guys [with the Comfort] are bringing a face and a name to a humanitarian mission of what the United States is about. And we do it because people in the United States care about everybody else.”
At the conclusion of the festivities, Richardson returned to Miami with her team while the Comfort set sail for her next stop in the Dominican Republic.