By Lt. Cmdr. Lara Bollinger, Submarine Group 7 Public Affairs
BUSAN, Republic of Korea – The last of the improved Los Angeles-class
submarines, USS Cheyenne (SSN 773), arrived in Busan March 20 as part of its
Western Pacific deployment.
Cheyenne is one of the most capable fast-attack submarines in the U.S. Navy.
Embodying a fighting spirit, Cheyenne’s enhanced war-fighting capabilities
include vertical launch cruise missiles, advanced sonar systems, and a state
of the art engine room. This sophisticated design provides Cheyenne the
ability to operate worldwide, ready for any mission.
The submarine’s arrival follows its participation in the bilateral naval
exercise Foal Eagle, involving assets from the U.S. and Republic of Korea
“I am proud of our crew’s participation in Foal eagle,” said Cmdr. Noel
Gonzalez, commanding officer. “The exercise provided great unit level
training for teams from both countries.”
During the exercise, two officers from the Republic of Korea’s navy embarked
“This engagement was an excellent opportunity for us to share submarine
practices and history, as well as learn about our respective cultures,” said
Lt. Cmdr. Micah Maxwell, executive officer of Cheyenne. “This sharing of
ideas and building of friendships is a key part of strengthening our ties
with an important ally.”
Cheyenne was welcomed to Busan by a live 50-member band, and the welcoming
party included a Korean girl who placed a flower wreath around Gonzalez’
“This port visit will allow the crew of Cheyenne to enjoy some of the best
liberty the Pacific has to officer,” said Master Chief Michael Hinkle, chief
of the boat. “We are all excited about the opportunity to experience Busan.
Many of our guys are interested in experiencing the food and culture.”
For some Sailors, this is their first time visiting the Republic of Korea,
while others look forward to connecting with their own Korean heritage.
“I would love to visit a museum and learn about Korean history,” said
Machinist’s Mate 1st Class Aaron Novitski. “Experiencing my culture is very
important to me, and my fiancée is even meeting me on the pier. I can’t
wait to teach her about my culture and the cuisine I have enjoyed since my
Cheyenne is homeported in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.