NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka Sailors Honor Fallen During Cemetery Cleanup
YOKOSUKA, Japan –Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) Fleet Logistics Center (FLC) Yokosuka Sailors gathered on sacred soil May 25 at Yokohama Foreign General Cemetery for a community relations cleanup project.
The cemetery holds the final remains of foreigners from 41 nations to include many U.S. servicemembers, some from nearly two centuries ago.
The Sailors came armed with rakes, hedge trimmers, clippers, brooms and gloves to clear away overgrown vegetation and weeds from the historic grounds as well as dispose of trash and debris.
“I felt proud and honored to be able to come together and give back to our host nation and to honor the men and women buried here,” said Chief Yeoman Lisa Reinhardt, NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka, business operations department (Code 300), leading chief petty officer. “It was a somber event to think about the fallen U.S. military service members buried here and it made me realize the absolute mutual respect we share with our host nation of Japan.”
The first to be laid to rest at the cemetery was Robert Williams, a 24 year-old Marine, who died aboard the USS Mississippi, one of the steam frigates commanded by Commodore Mathew Perry, who sailed his black ships to Japan and opened up the country from its strict isolationism, which had been enforced for more than 200 years under the Tokugawa Shogun-ate and kept Japan off-limits to the rest of the world.
Japan and the U.S. would open up relations with the Treaty of Kanagawa signing in 1854 and Perry would request land to be used as a cemetery in which to bury Williams.
“To me selfless service has a special meaning with memorial day just passing it means to me to be a part of something bigger than yourself and for those service members that paid the ultimate price that were buried in the cemetery, that is the ultimate meaning of selfless service,” said Logistics Specialist 1st Class Kevin Evans, NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka, fuels department (Code 700) member.
“I was thankful to have been given the opportunity to help preserve their final resting place, they paved the way for our relations with the Japanese people in one way or the other,” said Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Fuels) 1st Class David Medel, NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka, Tsurumi Fuel Terminal operations leading petty officer.
At the end of the day, over 75 bags of debris were hauled away from the quite tree lined plot of land and it was a group of logistics Sailors from NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka who took on the task of aiding in this historic cemetery’s upkeep.
NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka, one of eight fleet logistics centers under NAVSUP Global Logistics Support (GLS), is the Western Pacific region's largest U.S. Navy logistics command, headquartered just 26 miles due south of Tokyo, the enterprise networks more than 20 sites and fuel terminals from Misawa, Japan, to Sydney, Australia; Diego Garcia in the Indian Ocean to Guam with a mission to serve the Asia Pacific Region's forward deployed maritime warfighter with 24/7 operational logistics support -- integrating an extensive service provider network to deliver fuel, material, mail and supply chain services across the U.S. Navy's largest geographical area of responsibility (AOR).
NAVSUP GLS provides global logistics for a global Navy. The organization is made up of approximately 6,300 military and civilian logistics professionals operating from 105 locations worldwide providing an extensive array of integrated global logistics and contracting services to Navy, Marine Corps, joint operational units, and allied forces across all warfare enterprises.
The NAVSUP and Navy Supply Corps team as a whole shares one mission -- to deliver sustained global logistics and quality-of-life support to the Navy and joint warfighter. NAVSUP/Navy Supply Corps' diverse team of more than 25,000 civilian and military personnel oversee a diverse portfolio including supply chain management for material support to Navy, Marine Corps, joint and coalition partners, supply operations, conventional ordnance, contracting, resale, fuel, transportation, security assistance, and quality-of-life issues for our naval forces, including food service, postal services, Navy Exchanges, and movement of household goods. The NAVSUP/Navy Supply Corps team forms a vast network of professionals who deliver unparalleled products and services to customers in the fleet and across the world.
For more news from Naval Supply Systems Command, visit http://www.navy.mil/local/navsup/.