Guided-missile destroyer USS Donald Cook on a port visit in Klaipėda

On April 14 the Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Donald Cook (DDG 75) arrived in Klaipėda for a scheduled port visit.

Strengthening alliances during the port visit of the USS Donald Cook to Klaipėda demonstrates the shared commitment to promote safety and stability within the region, while seeking opportunities to enhance our interoperability with partners like Lithuania.

“This visit in Lithuania will be an excellent opportunity to strengthen relations and enhance maritime interoperability and improve NATO’s security in Baltic Sea,” Commander Matthew Powel, Executive Officer USS Donald Cook, said.

On April 14-18 Commander Charles Hampton, commanding officer of USS Donald Cook will conduct office calls with the Vice Mayor of Klaipeda, and the Commander of the Lithuanian Navy, and take part in formal events.

Sailors from the Donald Cook and members of the Lithuanian Navy will visit each other on their ships and will play against each other in a friendly basketball game.

It is already a tradition that crews of US warships on port visits I Klaipėda organise charity, social, and other events in expression of good will.. On April 15 sailors will be present at the ribbon cutting ceremony for the new playground equipment at Rytas Orphanage and arrange a sports and leisure event there.

US warships come for port visit to Klaipėda every 1-2 year. The most recent visit was conducted by the guided-missile destroyer USS John Dunham (DDG-109) in 2015, and before that – the guided-missile destroyer USS Oscar Austin (DDG-79) in 2014.

Donald Cook is currently on a forward-deployed patrol, working with allies and regional partners to help develop and improve our maritime forces, maintain regional security, and work towards mutual goals in order to advance security and stability in Europe.

The ship deployed from Naval Station Rota March 16, 2016. U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied, joint, and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.