By MC1 Charles Panter, NMCB 4
Seabees from NMCB 4 pass through a formation of Patriot Guard Riders on the flight line at Point Mugu, Calif., Feb. 5, after returning to homeport from a deployment to the U.S. Pacific Command area of operations. Photos by MCC Lowell Whitman
The first wave of Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 4 returned to homeport, marking the completion of a successful six-month Pacific deployment, Port Hueneme, Calif., Feb. 5.
During NMCB 4’s deployment, the battalion completed 25 projects of contingency construction, humanitarian and civic assistance, and exercise-related construction throughout the Pacific Fleet areas of responsibility.
Lt. Cmdr. Troy Brown, executive officer, NMCB 4, greets his family on the flight line at Point Mugu, Calif., Feb. 5, following his return to homeport from Pacific deployment.
NMCB 4 began its deployment in September 2014 to nine sites in eight countries. The battalion exercised command and control at Camp Marvin Shields, Okinawa, Japan, one of the deployment sites. Other sites included Cambodia; South Korea; Diego Garcia; the Philippines; Timor-Leste; Yokosuka, Japan; and San Clemente and China Lake, Calif.
Construction Civic Action Detail projects in Cambodia, Philippines and Timor-Leste were not just about construction; they focused on interoperation between the Seabees and the host nation’s civil engineers. At these detachments, the ‘Bees engaged in U.S. Embassy and U.S. Agency for International Development initiatives. Consequently, they were ambassadors of not just NMCB 4 but for the Seabees, the U.S. Navy and the United States of America.
“Each stage of deployment we showed to the world how Seabees can improve their host nation’s infrastructure, military proficiency and the how to build lasting relationships with the local communities,” said Cmdr. Jeff Lengkeek, commanding officer of NMCB 4. “We produced a quality product and conducted ourselves professionally. I’m proud of our battalion and honored to be a part of it.”
NMCB 4 will officially turn over its operational responsibilities to NMCB 5 during a ceremony on Feb. 16 in Okinawa.
NMCB 4 is part of the Naval Construction Force (NCF) that provides combatant commanders and Navy component commanders with combat-ready warfighters capable of general engineering, construction and limited combat engineering across the full range of military operations. The NCF is a vital component of the U.S. maritime strategy to provide deployable battalions capable of disaster preparation and recovery support, humanitarian assistance and combat operations support.
CECN Felipe Rivera, NMCB 4, greets his fiancée on the flight line at Point Mugu, Calif., Feb. 5, following his return from deployment to the U.S. Pacific Command area of operations.
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