PHILIPPINE SEA --
U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. Tommy Ngirbedul Jr., a native of Palau and radio operator with 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), communicated with representatives from the Palau Bureau of Maritime Security aboard patrol boat PSS President H.I. Remeliik II during a joint ship formation in order to facilitate better communication aboard USS New Orleans (LPD 18) off the coast of Palau, Feb. 27, 2021.
Graduating from Palau High School, Cpl. Ngirbedul joined the Marine Corps at age 17 out of recruiting station Guam and shipped out to boot camp in May of 2017: “I wanted to travel the world and experience new things outside of home,” Ngirbedul said. “My parents are supportive and proud.”
Cpl. Ngirbedul waited aboard the bridge to speak with representatives from his home nation, thanking them for the opportunity to work together and wishing them well in his native language after the formation dispersed. The Palau Bureau of Maritime Security returned his farewell, wished him safe travels, and expressed the hope that future meetings could take place ashore. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Dominic Clay)