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Honduran First Lady Visits, Thanks Seabees

By Petty Officer 2nd Class Mark Rankin, USN
American Forces Press Service

SAN PEDRO SULA, Honduras, Dec. 9, 1998 – The first lady of Honduras, Mary Flake de Flores, visited Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 7 here to view the Seabees' camp and to thank them for their humanitarian support since Hurricane Mitch roared through in November.

"It's gratifying to see how much work you have done for our people and what you've done for yourselves, establishing this camp," Flores said. She lauded the battalion for setting aside normal military operations and deploying to Honduras -- the battalion began deploying within three days of receiving the call.

As she toured the Seabees' newly assembled home away from home, Camp "Can-Do," she talked with the sailors, stopped at the main entrance to take photos, and viewed the camp entrance sign, which was designed and hand-painted by Seaman Jason Young from Bravo Company.

Since forward-deploying from Soto Cano Air Base, Honduras, and setting up camp, battalion members have been praised by Honduran leaders throughout the country for their humanitarian support, construction engineering expertise and generous spirit.

"It's inspiring to see the United States military lending humanitarian support to their neighbors," said U.S. Ambassador James Creagan. "I'm truly grateful for the U.S. Navy answering our call and sending their best construction engineers, the Seabees, to help get the people of Honduras back on their feet again."

"We are here in Honduras for humanitarian relief support, and that's a good cause," said Petty Officer 2nd Class Michael C. Glanz of Headquarters Company. "As we see various parts of the devastation, it makes us all appreciate our families and the support of the United States. These people are human beings and have been hurt by this hurricane. It makes us extremely grateful for everything we have."

[Petty Officer 2nd Class Mark Rankin is assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 7 and is a member of the U.S. military relief effort in Honduras.]

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