Sailors and Marines from Littoral Combat Group One (LCG-1) returned home to Naval Base San Diego and Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam after participating in the International Maritime and Naval Exhibition for South America, known as EXPONAVAL. Both USS Somerset (LPD 25) and USS Wayne E. Meyer (DDG 108) visited Valparaiso, Chile, to participate in the bicentennial anniversary of the Chilean Navy, and EXPONAVAL, the major naval exhibition for Latin America on the Pacific coast.
More than 1,000 Sailors and Marines from the LCG-1 flagship Somerset, embarked Special Purpose Marine Air Ground Task Force (SPMAGTF)-Peru, and Wayne E. Meyer deployed to South America in order to strengthen relationships and enhance cooperation between partner nations. While in Valparaiso, Sailors and Marines engaged in community service events and sports competitions with the local community. Somerset also held a reception on board, co-hosted by U.S. 4th Fleet and the U.S. Ambassador to Chile.
Alongside the Peruvian Naval Infantry, SPMAGTF-Peru conducted a humanitarian assistance, disaster response exercise in Chorrillos, Peru, an area prone to natural disasters. The bilateral group successfully demonstrated their ability to provide water purification, electricity, medical services, heavy equipment to clear roads and highways, and helicopters to reach isolated areas quickly in times of natural disaster.