Boatswain’s Mate 3rd Class Nayyaamunhotep Stubbs signals the Landing Craft, Utility (LCU) 1633 to approach the well deck of the amphibious dock landing ship USS Ashland (LSD 48) to receive equipment in preparation to conduct Defense Support to Civil Authorities (DSCA) efforts. Sailors and Marines from Ashland, part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group and 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit team, are preparing to provide Department of Defense support to the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands’ civil and local officials as part of the FEMA-supported Typhoon Yutu recovery efforts. (Photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Joshua Mortensen)
The amphibious dock landing ship USS Ashland, with embarked Marines from Combat Logistics Battalion arrived near the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands to provide Department of Defense support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency and civil and local officials as part of the FEMA-supported Typhoon Yutu recovery effort Saturday. "Our main priority is to work with our leadership and local officials in alleviating as much suffering as possible in CMNI," said Cmdr. Patrick L. German, the Ashland's commanding officer. "Our advance party has surveyed the area and identified a safe debarkation point for marines, sailors and equipment going ashore via our landing craft." Sailors from Naval Beach Unit 7 will be using Landing Craft, Utilities to deliver personnel along with trucks and supplies to support local relief efforts. They will assist in the clearing of debris and protecting property for the people of CMNI. "We have over 120 sailors and marines going ashore to provide assistance," said Staff Sgt. Denzel Youngblood, assigned to CLB 31. "In addition we will be providing over 4,800 gallons of water, 5,400 gallons of fuel, tents, generators, air conditioning units, vehicles, and equipment to help with cleaning and moving debris." Ashland, part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group, is forward deployed to Sasebo, Japan. CLB 31, part of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, is forward deployed to Okinawa, Japan. Both units are assigned to U.S. Seventh Fleet's Commander, Amphibious Force 7th Fleet.