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ARABIAN GULF (Dec. 3, 2018) Cmdr. Robert Tryon, commanding officer of Whidbey Island-class dock landing ship USS Rushmore (LSD 47), right, awards Chief Damage Controlman Branden Wilkins a Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal during a regularly scheduled deployment of the Essex Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) and 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU). The Essex ARG/13th MEU is flexible and persistent Navy-Marine Corps team deployed to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations in support of naval operations to ensure maritime stability and security in the Central Region, connecting to the Mediterranean and the Pacific through the western Indian Ocean and three strategic choke points. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Reymundo A. Villegas III)

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Photo taken on 3 December 2018 (© SurfaceWarriors / Flickr)

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 westpac, westpac 2018, npase west, uss rushmore, rushmore, 5th fleet, u.s. marines, sailors, u.s. navy, u.s. sailors, marines, pacific ocean, exercises, lsd 47, essex, lhd 2, uss essex, essex arg, uss anchorage, anchorage

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