22 July 2010
The New Zealand Defence Force has honoured fallen US servicemen and women at a wreath laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery, in Washington DC.
The Vice Chief of the New Zealand Defence Force, Rear Admiral Jack Steer, is being hosted by the US Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General James Cartwright, while meeting US military leaders in Washington DC. It is the first time in many years that a senior New Zealand Defence Force visitor to Washington is being accorded a ‘counterpart visit’ with the US military formally hosting the occasion.
RADM Steer attended a wreath laying ceremony at Arlington National Cemetery. He laid a wreath on behalf of the New Zealand Defence Force in memory of all US servicemen and women who have fallen in conflict.
RADM Steer says he was honoured to be a part of the very moving ceremony: “I was proud to honour the fallen servicemen and women and the sacrifices they made for their country. The New Zealand Defence Force and the US Armed services have a long standing friendship forged over many years and we operate together in Afghanistan today as we have in many places over time. My visit reinforces that relationship and the strong bonds that underpin it."
RADM Steer's visit finishes tomorrow.
There are currently 905 New Zealand Defence Force personnel deployed on 14 peacekeeping operations, UN missions and defence exercises across 10 countries.
For further information please contact Ally Clelland, Defence Communications Group 04 496 0273 or 021 569 130