Nitze Port Visit Is a Family Affair
By PETER ATKINSON, Deputy Editor
Aport visit by the guided-missile
destroyer USS Nitze to Fort
Lauderdale, Fla., provided quite a
homecoming for the ship’s commanding officer, Cmdr. Robert N.
Hein, who was raised and went to
school in Broward County before
receiving an appointment to the U.S.
Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md.,
was greeted at Port Everglades by
the president of the Broward County
Council, his father Robert Hein Sr.,
and his mother Denise, a member of
the council’s board of directors.
Nitze, which is homeported in
Norfolk, Va., spent five days in Port
Everglades after returning from a six-month deployment operating off the
coast of Somalia and the Arabian Sea
as part of the Bataan Strike Group.
Following the family greeting
upon the ship’s arrival, which earned
considerable coverage in the local
media, the port visit kicked off with a
welcome party at The Briny River-front Irish Pub in Fort Lauderdale.
Nitze offered press tours while in
port and hosted an onboard twilight
reception for Navy Leaguers and
guests from the area. Hein was given
the key to the city by Mayor Jim
Naugle and reciprocated with a ship’s
plaque. Some of Hein’s teachers and
friends from St. Thomas Aquinas
High School were in attendance to
see one of their own honored.
During the reception, Lt. Cmdr.
Allen Starr, commander of U.S.
Naval Sea Cadet Corps’ Spruance
Division, was given the “Don’t
Tread on Me” ensign by Hein.
Hein was the guest speaker at a
dinner hosted by Patricia Du
Mont, Florida Region president, at
the Tower Club. His speech and
slide show presentation allowed
the audience of more than 100
Navy Leaguers and guests to better
understand “What do destroyers
do all day?”
Nitze’s visit also provided a
chance for the ship’s crew to see a
Miami Dolphins preseason football
game against the Tampa Bay
Buccaneers. The Broward County
Council and Broward Navy Days, a
nonprofit group that assists with
the morale, welfare and recreation
needs of the sea services, negotiated for the sailors to gain admission
to the game for only $10 each,
according to Robert Hein Sr.
However, he noted, word got out
that the sailors would have to pay
and unsolicited donations came in
from everywhere. The result was that
not only did the sailors get in free,
the council and Broward Navy Days
were able to accommodate an additional 350 Coast Guardsmen and
reservists for a total of 500 people.
Cmdr. Hein was given a skybox
for the game by the Dolphins Alumni
Association, and former Dolphins
players, such as quarterback Earl
Morrall, dropped by to chat. During
halftime, Hein and his parents were
interviewed by NBC-TV for that
evening’s telecast. It was a night to
remember, Robert Hein Sr. said, even
though the Dolphins lost.
From the left, Denis Hein, Broward County Council President Robert Hein Sr.,
Fort Lauderdale Mayor Jim Naugle, USS Nitze Commanding Officer Cmdr.
Robert Hein Jr., Denise Hein and Steven Hein after Cmdr. Hein received the
key to the city from Naugle.
Hosts New CNO’s
First Public Visit
In his first public visit since becoming the Chief of Naval Operations
(CNO), Adm. Gary Roughead
addressed the annual Navy Day Luncheon at the Philadelphia Union
Adm. Roughead, the former commander of U.S. Fleet Forces Command, became the Navy’s 29th CNO
Sept. 29. In his 17-minute luncheon
address, Roughead thanked the
Navy League for its longstanding
support of the maritime services and
briefly discussed the new maritime
strategy that was to be unveiled in