Though scheduled for an off-duty day, volunteers from the crew of the Oscar Austin came to the Children’s Hospital to assist in the clean-up of warehouse space on the grounds. The few dozen sailors spent two hours hauling old furniture out of the warehouses into containers.
“Our mission here is to bolster good relations with our allies, but we believe that has to start at the civilian level. This sort of public outreach event is exactly in line with the mission,” said Second Lieutenant Maxwell.
Meanwhile other crewmembers visited the young patients in the hospital wards, showing off their equipment and videos demonstrating their service on board the Oscar Austin. The pilot of a military helicopter passed his helmet around for the kids to try on, also sharing with them other pieces of equipment used in his daily duties.
“This is a wonderful chance to better get to know the allied countries that took part in the Baltops drills in the Baltic Sea with us,” explained Lieutenant Butler-Seger.
The Oscar Austin arrived Saturday in Latvia for a two-day visit before heading off to the Lithuanian port of Klaipeda, where they will also take part in various volunteer activities.