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On Memorial Day, Honoring Those Who Served

NAVAL SUPPORT ACTIVITY, Bahrain (Feb. 23, 2012) Vice Adm. Mark Fox, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, presents a plaque to Intelligence Specialist 1st Class Ryan Wilson signifying his selection as a Sailor of the Quarter€ for the 1st Quarter of 2012, during an awards ceremony. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Russell Smith/Released)

As we honor those who served in the U.S. armed forces on Memorial Day, let us also take this time to recognize the men and women of the U.S. Naval Support Activity in Bahrain, and the Fifth Fleet.

We particularly wish to recognize the contributions today of Petty Officer 1st Class Ryan J. Wilson, who died on May 20 in Manama, Bahrain, because of complications associated with a medical condition.

The young sailor and intelligence specialist was recognized for exemplary performance just this spring, and was named U.S. Naval Forces Central Command Sailor of the Quarter. He also spoke with University of Bahrain students to increase cultural understanding between our nations, and he tutored elementary schoolchildren.

We offer our condolences to his parents and to his friends and colleagues this Memorial Day.

U.S. armed forces have protected the liberty and interests of Americans, here in the U.S. and abroad.  On Memorial Day, we are mindful of the people of Bahrain, who aspire to enjoy the freedoms and rights Americans do, including freedom of speech, the right to peaceful assembly, and freedom of the press.

Best wishes to you and your loved ones for a safe and meaningful Memorial Day.

Bahrain protests take place today (video)

Friday, March 23 – Al Jazeera reports that there has been more dissent in Bahrain, with protests calling for reform.  The demonstrations were largely peaceful but there were clashes with police in some parts of the capital.  Al Jazeera’s Mohamed Vall reports from Manama.