On the morning of 12 March 2011, the U.S.S. Ronald Reagan carrying over 4,000 Marines and Sailors from 7th fleet area of operations responded to pleas for help.
The first few days involved reconnaissance missions over affected areas to assess the devastation.
In response to the data collected, the Department of Defense allocated more resources.
At its peak, Operation Tomodachi would involve over 24,000 service members from the Marines, Navy, Air Force and Army. 189 aircraft, 24 ships, and roughly $90 million were used in relief efforts.
Marines from nearby bases in Japan were relatively undamaged. Once given the green light, they transitioned to immediately begin clean up efforts on the ground in 5 major cities.