PHILIPPINE SEA (June 18, 2016) The Nimitz-class Aircraft carriers USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) and USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) conduct dual aircraft carrier strike group operations in the U.S. 7th Fleet area of operations in support of security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific. The operations mark the U.S. Navy's continued presence throughout the area of responsibility. U.S. Navy photo by MC3 Nathan Burke. Read more....
USS Coronado leaves San Diego on deployment 6/23/2016
U.S. Third Fleet Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Littoral combat ship USS Coronado (LCS 4) departed Naval Base San Diego June 22 on an independent deployment to the Western Pacific.
Prior to proceeding on deployment Coronado will participate in the Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) Exercise. The exercise provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world's oceans.
While deployed to the U.S. 7th Fleet area of responsibility, the ship and crew of about 70 Sailors assigned to LCS Squadron (LCSRON) 1 will conduct presence operations and goodwill activities with partner nations.
"We're excited to have USS Coronado taking part in the world's largest international maritime exercise," said Vice Adm. Nora Tyson, commander, U.S. 3rd Fleet. "This ship will play a critical role in the fleet and in our nation's defense. RIMPAC provides a good opportunity for our partner navies to work with the ship and see how it can contribute to collective regional security."
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 23 also deployed aboard Coronado with the first-ever MQ-8 Fire Scout equipped with a maritime surveillance radar (Telephonics AN/ZPY-4). Fire Scout will significantly improve the Navy's surface search capabilities for LCS and its action group, allowing assets to employ an autonomous aircraft off a Naval vessel for search, detection, surveillance, and tracking of maritime surface vessels.
"It is an honor and privilege to deploy the first LCS-2 variant to the 7th Fleet AOR", said Cmdr. Scott Larson, commanding officer of Coronado and LCS Crew 204. "It's time to demonstrate the full potential of these ships to the fleet, and I have every confidence that the Coronado team is poised to execute at a high level in support of vital operational tasking. I am exceedingly proud of how hard these Sailors have worked and trained, and grateful for the unconditional support our families have provided in helping us reach this milestone."
Coronado is an innovative surface combatant designed to operate in littoral seas and shallow water to counter mines, submarines and fast surface craft threats in coastal regions.
The ship is homeported in San Diego and is part of Naval Surface Forces and U.S. 3rd Fleet.
Navy Pregnancy and Parenthood mobile app now available
"Pregnancy and parenthood can be compatible with a successful military career when Service members and the Command both understand their roles and responsibilities, said Capt. Candace Eckert, director of N1 Diversity. "This app makes that task easier by identifying regulations, instructions and references from a wide variety of sources and offering them in one easy-to-use app. The app includes information regarding assignments, retention, separation, standards of conduct and much more." ......read more
SECNAV announces new administrative separation policy
To protect Sailors and Marines suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), traumatic brain injury (TBI) or any other diagnosed mental health condition, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus has made his department the first in the military to assure such conditions are considered before separating a service member. ......read more
Navy expands tattoo options, command ball cap wear
This policy update is being made in response to the increased popularity of tattoos for those currently serving and in the population from which the Navy draws its recruits. It is also meant to ensure the Navy does not miss opportunities to bring in talented young men and women who are willing to serve......... read more
Military couple assignment policy: 5 things to know
The Navy realizes how important families are, and when they're not whole it can add stress to a Sailor's life. Collocation of dual-military couples is part of supporting families. It is a priority, along with balancing fleet readiness. The revised policy updates the collocation and distribution procedures and makes orders negotiation less cumbersome........ read more
PACIFIC OCEAN (June 22, 2016) Two MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopters transfer pallets of stores from the fast combat support ship USNS Rainier (T-AOE 7) to the guided-missile cruiser USS Mobile Bay (CG 53) during a replenishment-at-sea. Providing a ready force supporting security and stability in the Indo-Asia-Pacific, Mobile Bay is operating as part of the John C. Stennis Strike Group and Great Green Fleet on a regularly scheduled 7th Fleet deployment. U.S. Navy photo by MC2 Ryan J. Batchelder
ARABIAN GULF (June 21, 2016) An MV-22 Osprey aircraft, assigned to the 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), takes off from the flight deck of amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4). Boxer is the flagship for the Boxer Amphibious Ready Group and, with the embarked 13th Marine Expeditionary Unit, is deployed in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations. U.S. Navy photo by MCSN Eric Burgett
USS Rushmore celebrates 25th anniversary of ship's commissioning 6/3/2016
From USS Rushmore Public Affairs
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- The crew of dock landing ship USS Rushmore (LSD 47) celebrated the ship's 25th commissioning anniversary with a cake cutting ceremony and barbeque while in a maintenance availability period, June 1.
During the cake cutting ceremony, Cmdr. Sarah H. De Groot, Rushmore commanding officer, expressed how proud she is to be able to serve aboard a ship with such extensive history in the fleet.
"It's an honor to serve aboard Rushmore and I'm proud of all the ship has accomplished," said De Groot. "Our success during the maintenance availability thus far will ensure the ship will have many more successes to come."
Rushmore is the second Navy ship to be named for the Mount Rushmore National Memorial in the Black Hills of South Dakota. She is the seventh ship in her class of dock landing ships, commissioned June 1, 1991. During her first of 11 deployments, Rushmore spearheaded the beach landing on Somalia during Operation Restore Hope, the largest military humanitarian operation in history.
In 2004, while supporting Operation Iraqi Freedom, a catastrophic earthquake struck the Indian Ocean and Rushmore was called to take part in the massive military humanitarian operation, Operation Unified Assistance. During the ship's 2015 deployment, Rushmore made headlines when rescuing 65 stranded mariners in the Makassar Strait after their ferry capsized. Rushmore provided much needed medical aid, food, water and clothing.
Adm. Michelle Howard, the 38th Vice Chief of Naval Operations, served as one of Rushmore's commanding officers. When she assumed command in 1999, Howard was the first African American woman to command a U.S. Navy warship.
Rushmore's crew consists of more than 375 Sailors. In addition to their normal duties aboard the ship, the crew plays an integral part during the ship's current maintenance availability ensuring that the ship is maintained and well preserved. Rushmore is scheduled to be in the shipyard until training phase begins in early 2017.
San Diego to be homeport for two new DDG class ships
SAN DIEGO - The Navy announced the future guided-missile destroyers USS John Finn (DDG 113) and USS RAFAEL PERALTA - DDG 115 are scheduled to be homeported at Naval Base San Diego following their respective commissionings.
Rafael Peralta is expected to arrive in San Diego in fall of 2016 and John Finn will follow in early 2017.
Rafael Peralta is being built by Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine and John Finn is being built by Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) in Pascagoula, Mississippi. Both ships are Arleigh Burke-class destroyers.
The U.S. Navy continually monitors force readiness and ability to provide the most robust, capable maritime force possible. Stationing destroyers in a West Coast port supports the rebalance to the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, placing our most advanced capabilities and greater capacity in that vital theater. By 2020, approximately 60 percent of Navy ships and aircraft will be based in the region.
Guided-missile destroyers are multi-mission surface combatants capable of conducting Anti-Air Warfare (AAW), Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW), and Anti-Surface Warfare (ASUW). The destroyer's armament has greatly expanded the role of the ship in strike warfare utilizing the MK-41 Vertical Launch System (VLS).
National military news NAVFAC small business program recognized by veteran association 6/21/2016
by Don Rochon, Naval Facilities Engineering Command Public Affairs
WASHINGTON (NNS) -- The National Veteran Small Business Coalition (NVSBC) recognized the Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) for its proficiency in awarding contracts to veteran-owned small businesses, June 21.
"It is our pleasure to recognize NAVFAC for your accomplishments in using veteran and service-disabled, veteran-owned small businesses in your procurement program in fiscal year 2015," said NVSBC Executive Director Scott Denniston, in a letter to the command.
NVSBC is a nationwide, not for profit, trade association promoting the use of veteran-owned and service-disabled, veteran-owned small businesses in federal contracting as prime and subcontractors.
Last year, NAVFAC awarded 8.4 percent of contract awards to veteran-owned small businesses and 6.2 percent to service disabled, veteran-owned small businesses -- which exceeds the congressionally mandated goal of 3 percent.
"We are honored to receive this award," said NAVFAC Commander Rear Adm. Bret Muilenburg. "To be recognized for our efforts in helping veteran-owned businesses is a testament to all the hard work of our Small Business Program."
Last year, awarded contracts totaled more than $538 million in obligations to veteran-owned small businesses, including nearly $400 million to service-disabled, veteran-owned small businesses.
"NAVFAC has a proud history of exceptional success in leveraging the capabilities of our nation's veteran-owned small businesses," said Scott Crosson, Small Business Program associate director. "The command's enterprise-wide efforts clearly demonstrate support for public policy, but more importantly, they exemplify smart business decisions."
Three new Navy training apps now available 6/17/2016
From Naval Service Training Command Public Affairs
GREAT LAKES, Ill. (NNS) -- Three mobile apps designed for Navy basic military training became available for public download, June 16.
The three mobile training apps U.S. Military Rank & Reference, U.S. Navy Ratings & Reference, and Ships & Aircraft Training are part of the eSailor Initiative, and are presently being used by recruits on electronic tablets at Recruit Training Command (RTC), the Navy's only boot camp.
These training apps help today's recruits transform from civilian to Sailor. Available through the iTunes and Google Play stores, now fleet Sailors will be able to utilize these to continue their training throughout their career.
"This will provide an excellent opportunity for fleet Sailors to brush up on their Navy knowledge as well as for the public to learn about America's Navy," said Rear Adm. Stephen C. Evans, commander, Naval Service Training Command (NSTC). "We are continuing to build on our mobile training technology and as we build more apps, they will continue to benefit present and future Sailors for years to come."
According to John Drake, director of NSTC's Strategy and Analysis (N5) directorate, the training apps will be beneficial to fleet Sailors looking to download and install apps on their personal devices.
"We thought the apps would be a big benefit to anyone wanting to know more about Navy ships and aircraft, military ranks and the 56 Navy ratings, or jobs," Drake said after seeing the success of mobile technology for new recruits.
Dave Driegert, the PMW 240 Mobility Team assistant program manager, believes these training apps will prove valuable to how Sailors learn the skills and knowledge required in their jobs.
"It's a great education tool and ultimately in a medium that most young Sailors today would prefer to consume information in -- their phone or tablet," he said. "And the great thing about these apps is you don't need a Navy device to use them. You can download to any iOS or Android device."
The apps are a bring your own device (BYOD) tool designed to work on personal devices outside of the NMCI domain. Users can download the apps from the iTunes or Google Play at no cost.
The U.S. Navy eSailor Team produced the apps through Booz Allen Hamilton, in partnership with the U.S. Navy Sea Warrior Program and Tracen Technologies Inc., a company that specializes in integrated mobile and web solutions, who provided logistics and app hosting support.
To find the free Navy apps, search "U.S. Military Rank & Reference" "U.S. Navy Ratings & Reference" and "Ships & Aircraft Training" in app stores or your web browser.
Requests for separations, retirements move to online process 6/9/2016
From Navy Personnel Command Public Affairs
MILLINGTON, Tenn. (NNS) -- The transition to requesting retirement, including requests to transfer to the fleet Reserve and separations online, was announced June 8 in NAVADMIN 133/16.
Retirement and separations (R&S) will be implemented incrementally through the Navy Standard Integrated Personnel System (NSIPS) beginning in June 2016 and continuing throughout the summer and fall. The initial roll out will include the commands supported by Personnel Support Det. (PSD) Gulfport, Mississippi; Little Creek, Virginia; and Memphis, Tennessee.
Once the initial three PSDs complete implementation satisfactorily, a phased roll out of the remaining PSDs will follow. A schedule will be posted and announced. Additionally, NSIPS Web-Afloat implementation timeline is dependent on the ship modernization process and will be completed in about 24 months after initial roll-out.
"The transition to requesting and routing retirement and separations requests is the first end-to-end personnel process to be re-engineered," said Ann Stewart, assistant chief of naval personnel for pay and personnel. "This major modernization integrates and streamlines the retirement and separation business process and is inclusive of officers, enlisted, active and Reserve personnel."
Routing online will allow for verification along with routing and transparent tracking of applications for the individual Sailor, their command, the PSD and Navy Personnel Command.
Sailors and command personnel can begin training for the new process now. Once logged into NSIPS, users can find a link to User Productivity Kits near the bottom of the page. Beyond that link is training geared toward familiarizing Sailors with the R&S process as well as listing the requirements commands will need to be able to route the requests.
United Through Reading® Deploying? Service members invited to record stories for family at San Diego USO
United Through Reading® is a program helping ease the stress of separation for military families by having deploying or deployed service members read children’s books aloud via DVD for their family to watch at home. This powerful program is available to all military units. It provides service members a chance to make lasting connections from afar. The DVD recording and the book are mailed to the child and family back home.
Service members who are leaving for training can also take part in this program. Being a parent is not required; service members can send the DVD & book(s) to any special child in their life such as younger sister or brother, niece, nephew or godchild.
On the day of the recording, service members are encouraged to dress in the attire they will be wearing while deployed/training, but this is not required. The room is private, so any special message, or those fun reading voices, will only be heard by the recipient of the DVD recording. USO San Diego has books available, or service members can bring their own. Our volunteers will help set up the camera and then leave the room. The DVD can hold a 30 minute recording.
Please e-mail USO San Diego Staff Member Nichole Duarte at email@example.com to make your appointment. This program is offered at both USO San Diego centers.