By Scott Achelpohl
Deputy Editor, Seapower
The New York Council typically sponsors around 20 events during Fleet Week each year. But this year, during the novel coronavirus pandemic, Fleet Week NYC went virtual.
Navy Region Mid-Atlantic worked with various U.S. Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard units to present Virtual Fleet Week New York 2020 May 20-26 on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
Many members had the chance to experience a bit of Fleet Week from the safety of their homes as Navy Region Mid-Atlantic kept the spirit of Fleet Week New York alive. The weeklong lineup included live question-and-answer sessions, never-before-seen video tours of the guided-missile destroyer USS Laboon and three Coast Guard cutters as well as an aerial tour of the Coast Guard Barque Eagle.
The events highlighting the men and women of the sea services also included performances by Navy Band Northeast, the U.S. Marine Corps Battle Color Detachment and the Coast Guard Silent Drill Team; Navy parachute team the Leap Frogs; informational presentations by Navy Explosive Ordnance Disposal team members, military working dog handlers and Navy divers; photo contests; military helicopters, including a Coast Guard search-and-rescue demonstration and a Navy pilot; Marine workouts at home; and Memorial Day featurettes.
In place of the Fleet Week Farewell Cookout, the New York Council hosted a Virtual Fleet Week Toast to close out the week. Rear Adm. Charles Rock, commander of Navy Region Mid-Atlantic, and New York Council President Frank Russo led the toasts, which can be seen in this video on the New York Council’s YouTube channel.