November 20, 2018 – USS John S. McCain (DDG 56) re-opened her mess decks Nov. 19.
This is the first day that normal food service operations have been running aboard John S. McCain since the deadly collision on Aug. 21, 2017.
“Regaining the ability to serve the crew food aboard the ship is yet another step towards returning to normal operations, and is a huge boost to the morale of the crew,” said Lt. (j.g.) Kathryn Hussy, the supply officer onboard John S. McCain.
The re-opened mess aboard John S. McCain was officially named Maverick Café on the would-be birthday of Senator John S. McCain, III.
During the grand opening ceremony John S. McCain’s Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Micah Murphy, gave thanks to his entire crew for their all hands efforts and welcomed them to eat at the newly opened mess decks.
“I want to thank our engineering and supply teams for their tireless and creative efforts to get the food service operations back up and running,” Murphy said. “It was not easy, but they somehow found a way around all of the repairs and isolations to be able to pull this off while still in the dry dock phase. I know the culinary specialists are excited to show off their skills, and the crew’s taste buds are equally excited to put those to the test. It is a great day to officially announce the Maverick Café open for business.”
Among the crew, Culinary Specialist 1st Class Jose Hernandez, from El Paso, Texas and the leading culinary specialist onboard John S. McCain was able to cook a meal for all his shipmates that added to the efforts of completing the Maverick Café.
“This was a total team effort from the engineers who helped make sure our equipment was working, our ship repair facility partners and the crew who patiently waited for the right systems to be restored so we could restart food service operations and support our shipmates,” said Hernandez.
For the ceremonial meal, the crew was served steak, chicken and a special cake commemorating the day.
John S. McCain is forward-deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations in support of security and stability in the Indo-Pacific region.