Welcome to your new home

To the crew and families of the USS Nimitz:

Welcome home. We think you’re going to love it here.

The greeting you’ll receive today at your new homeport is just a preview of the community support coming your way. Just ask anyone connected to the USS Lincoln, the first aircraft carrier to call Naval Station Everett home, or any other ship stationed here. You’ll be embraced. It’s just one of many reasons Everett has become known as “The Sailor’s Choice.”

Here, you’ll find an active, enthusiastic Everett Council of the Navy League, always ready to support and thank Navy personnel and families for their service and sacrifice.

You’ll find modern housing designed for Navy families, including Constitution Park in Lake Stevens and Carroll’s Creek Landing in Marysville, both situated right in the heart of community activities.

Navy families, in fact, put down roots throughout Snohomish County. You’ll not only be welcome in any community here, but because of the county’s robust population of veterans, you’ll likely have neighbors who can relate directly to military life.

And, as Herald Writer Mina Williams reported this week, you’ll even enjoy merchant discounts in Edmonds as part of a first-of-its-kind program aimed at rewarding active and former military personnel and their families. (Learn more at www.vapp2.com/showmerchants.)

As you can tell, the Navy is a highly valued asset here. Government leaders, from local officials to the congressional delegation, have worked doggedly to make sure the Pentagon knows it. In particular, the constant attention of Everett Mayor Ray Stephanson, U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen and U.S. Sen. Patty Murray have helped solidify Naval Station Everett’s future.

The latest good news came last month, when the Navy announced it will replace each of the homeport’s three frigates with new or modified destroyers over the next seven years. That will bring the base’s destroyer complement to five, and increase total personnel by 7 percent.

Work by leaders, and the community, in support of Naval Station Everett will continue to be important as the Pentagon budget comes under increasing pressure in the years to come.

Fortunately, you’ll find that everyone here understands that. And they show it not just in words, but in deeds intended to make you feel at home.

That, after all, is how a homeport should feel.

Welcome. It’s great to have you here.