SAN FRANCISCO - Fleet Week continues this weekend with ship tours, music performances, and the popular air show including the Blue Angels. The lingering summer-like temperatures made for a perfect day for families to visit the city and learn about the military.
The USS John P. Murtha sits at Piers 30--32, with hundreds of members of the U.S. Navy and Marines ready to show it off to thousands of visitors this weekend.
"We want to show folks their Navy – touch it, feel it, smell it. It can look incredibly expensive on paper, and we want folks to know where their tax dollars are going, that the Navy is a good steward of the American dollar and that we’re keeping folks safe from sea to shining sea," said Officer Joash Ward, a U.S. Navy Spokesperson.
Many families lined up early to get access to the ship. The Daniels family was one of the first in line Sunday.
"I love to see all the military equipment, the size and all the different things on the ship. It’s a really cool experience," Kimberly Daniels told KTVU.
It's become a tradition for Kimberly's dad to bring her and her brother from Sacramento for Fleet Week.
"I think it’s good for them because they show appreciation for the servicemembers, and get a better understanding of who’s serving our country," Aaron Daniels said.
Inside the USS John P. Murtha, sailor Isaiah Talingdan led a special tour group – his family. The Bay Area native got to show his family the ship he works on for the first time.
"[We wanted] to see how he lives when he’s out there, and what the ship is like when he’s out there," said his mother Wena Talingdan. "We’re very honored and proud of him for joining and serving America."
He was lucky enough that his ship docked in his hometown during Fleet Week.
- Fleet Week: Coming into SF Bay on one of the Bay Area's own ships
- SF Fleet Week showcases more than just the ships and air shows
- ‘Squadron Bottle’ military tradition lives on at historic San Francisco hotel
"I’m most excited to show them my job, what I do. So I’m a damage control man, I’m getting ready to show them what we do, what we do on our daily," said Isaih Talingdan.
Visitors can get up close and personal with military helicopters, vehicles and weapons, and see how they're used.
"Seeing the 777 there, the 155mm howitzer, just excited me. And then coming down and seeing the Marines go on a fire mission and do all this stuff that we used to do in the Army as well, just got me going," said Tony Gates, veteran and president of the West Point Society of Northern California.
Gates said visiting the ship gives him hope for the next generation.
"I hear a lot of people, particularly old people my age, think the youth have gone to heck, things aren’t going well. But there’s nothing like seeing service members, servicewomen, servicemen doing their thing that lets you know we’re going to be ok, the country is fine. We are still the strongest power on the planet," said Gates.
Ship tours continue on Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Monday from 9 a.m. to noon, before the ships depart Tuesday. The final air show is from noon to 4 p.m. on Sunday.