Mon August 13, 2012
LDS Volunteers Join Navy Humanitarian Mission
The U.S. Navy hospital ship USNS Mercy is wrapping up a four-month tour through Southeast Asia called Pacific Partnership. Among the 1200 military and civilians aboard the ship there are eight volunteers from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They include Nate Leishman, the church's manager of humanitarian disaster response, who says the opportunity to participate began several years ago when the Navy called to say the church could add volunteers to the humanitarian supplies it had donated on previous missions.
Dr. John Jarstad, an opthalmologist from Seattle, is also aboard the Mercy. He's been performing cataract surgeries and other procedures aboard ship and on land as the ship made stops in the Phillipines, Cambodia and Vietnam. They spoke to KUER's Dan Bammes as the ship lay at anchor off Sihanoukville, Cambodia.