Local sailor returns aboard US Navy Swift Boat
Santo Domingo.- For U.S. Navy Machinist mate Garibel Perez, returning to the Dominican Republic donning his camouflage uniform fills him with a pride.
The native of the poor barrio Villa Duarte couldn’t hide his joy when listing the things he misses of Dominican culture, after a 17 year absence.
Though not the first time the sailor visits his country after emigrating to the U.S. 18 years ago, Perez said he could write a book on all the things he cannot do there, like “eating fritters, yaniqueques (Johnny cakes) and going to the colmado to buy half a bullion cube.”
This Dominican 35 year-old is one of the 100-strong crew which set sail November 6 aboard the sleek US Navy HSV-2 Swift Boat to share their experiences with Dominican Navy pars and materialize several humanitarian projects, as part of the boat’s annual “South Interchange Season” mission.
The US Southern Command deployed units which will train Dominican sailors on port safety techniques, medical preparedness and small craft motor maintenance.
Mission commander Gary Wright is in charge of a naval infantry crew who will be in Sans Souci Port for three weeks, which include construction workers, a medical team, veterinarians, investigators and expeditionary personnel.
SOURCES: listin.com.do, diariolibre.com