On Thursday two Kenyan naval officers performed the demanding task of conning officer on board USS Samuel B Roberts (FFG 58) while conducting a replenishment at sea (RAS) with the USNS John Lenthall (T-AO-189).
Second Lieutenant’s Michael Ommut’sa and Franklyne Toniok were afforded the unique opportunity to drive the 450-foot warship alongside the oil tanker while pumping fuel.
It was the first time Kenyan Sailors performed as conning officer onboard the historic naval vessel.
Ommut’sa said it was his first time onboard a frigate and to conduct a special evolution like a RAS. He stated, “I was nervous to come alongside a tanker.”
He also mentioned he was happy and proud to drive a U.S. Navy ship in the Mediterranean.
“It was a privilege and honor,” said Toniok when asked about the opportunity, “and it was a fantastic first time experience doing a refueling at sea.”
Sammy B’s Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Angel Cruz, said, “It was not only a great experience and opportunity for the them, but also for my Sailors to work and interact with representatives of a foreign navy. So much of our current mission with Africa Partnership Station is based on joint-nation training and exercise. I’m proud and honored to have been apart of this historic event for the Sammy B.”
The two Kenyan officers are riding onboard the Sammy B for a brief time to experience, train and work on board a US Naval vessel as part of Africa Partnership Station. They will take back to the Kenyan Navy the experience and knowledge they have acquired while onboard the Sammy B.
Sammy B conducted the RAS in support of their current mission in Africa Partnership Station. Africa Partnership Station is a US-led initiative developed by the United States Naval Forces Africa for the purpose of improving and promoting maritime security and stability in the region
Read more at Jacksonville.com: http://jacksonville.com/military/mayport-mirror/2011-07-20/story/kenyan-officers-drive-sbr-during-refueling-sea#ixzz1Sh7GKVhj