USS Hershel “Woody” Williams Arrives in Astakos, Greece

November 1, 2020 – The Expeditionary Sea Base USS Hershel “Woody” Williams (ESB 4) arrived in Astakos, Greece, Nov. 1 following a 43-day underway period supporting U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM).

The ship worked alongside North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Allies and partners participating in six maritime evolutions, one major multinational exercise, and at-sea refueling operations.

“Our recent operations have shown the importance of our mutual commitment to security and stability off the coast of Africa,” said Capt. David Gray, Hershel “Woody” Williams commanding officer, blue crew. “The crew’s hard work enabled this ship to fulfill our mission set across the spectrum of maritime operations.”

Hershel “Woody” Williams provides the U.S. a forward deployed naval presence in Africa, as well as increased naval power through Navy and Marine Corps integrated operations, including Marine aviation and support to amphibious operations. Other operations and training capabilities the ship performs include support to special operations, command and control, and staging of equipment.

While in port, the ship will conduct a regularly-scheduled maintenance period. Due to COVID-19 health measures, Sailors will remain aboard the ship.

Hershel “Woody” Williams is homeported in Souda Bay, Greece, and conducts AFRICOM missions in the Mediterranean and the waters around East, South, and West Africa to include the Gulf of Guinea. The ship is assigned to the AFRICOM mission set and will support security cooperation missions and operations in and around the African continent.

U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa and U.S. Sixth Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.

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