ROTA, Spain – Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa, met with service members and toured facilities at Naval Station (NAVSTA) Rota, Spain, Dec. 9.
Adm. Samuel J. Locklear III held an all-hands call with Sailors and Marines, where he thanked them for their service and discussed the impact of NAVSTA Rota and the Kingdom of Spain in the European theater.
“I am getting around seeing the folks who are doing such great work for the United States Navy and Marine Corps,” said Locklear. “I want to let you know your activities are important and they’re being recognized.”
He also commented about the time he joined the Navy and the difference between today’s service member.
“I joined during Vietnam when we had a draft and nobody thought we could support all the services if we got rid of the draft,” said Locklear. “But we did and I think we are better for it. It is just like many of you who have come in during the past nine years who have come into service during time of war and are still coming in and serving your country.”
After the all-hands call, Locklear met with Adm. Juan Carlos Muñoz-Delgado, Admiral of the Spanish Fleet.
“The Kingdom of Spain is an important ally to the United States for projecting military power and maintaining maritime presence into the Mediterranean, North Africa and Middle East,” said Locklear. “We have significant shared security interests, and Spain has traditionally supported U.S. Forces deployments and operations with U.S. Forces departing Spain directly into international air and sea space.”
The Naval Forces Europe-Africa area of responsibility covers approximately half of the Atlantic Ocean, from the North Pole to Antarctica; as well as the Adriatic, Baltic, Barents, Black, Caspian, Mediterranean and North Seas; to include all of Russia, Europe and nearly the entire continent of Africa.