Where Were You on September 11th, 2001?


Where were you?

I was in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean on board the USS Louisiana, SSBN-743 Gold.  The USS Louisiana is a fleet ballistic missile submarine.

I can’t even begin to tell you what it was like to be at sea when something like this happens.  It was nearly two months before I was actually able to see images of what had happened.

Our world really did change on that day.

So, where were you?  What is your story?

The Chief’s Board


In a few months, this blog post will either be updated or deleted depending on the outcome.

To advance (make more money) in the U.S. Navy we are given advancement exams. These exams test our job knowledge and our general military knowledge. The test scores are coupled with yearly evaluation scores and a magic number (final multiple) is derived. If your final multiple score is above the score that the Navy determines it needs to meet advancement needs then the individual will be advanced to the next higher pay grade. This method is true when a person is trying to advance to E4, E5, and E6, but differs slightly when trying to achieve the rank of Chief Petty Officer (E7).

To become a Chief Petty Officer (CPO) a sailor must still pass the exam and that is where the similarities end. Once the exam is passed the Navy will issue a list of those who are Selection Board Eligible (SBE), just passing the exam doesn’t automatically make a sailor board eligible. The “Board” is made up of several senior enlisted personnel who pour over service records to find the best of the best to be selected to wear the coveted gold fouled anchor with the silver superimposed U.S.N.

So, making board means a lot because if you don’t make board, then you have to wait another year before you can take the test and try again.

I made board. This is my second year taking the Chief’s exam and the second year I have made board. I am hopeful, but I am not holding my breath. At present, twelve other First Class Sonar Technicians took the Chief’s test. Only eight of us made board. Last year only one person out of eight was selected to become a Chief Sonar Technician.

Personally, I think I have what it takes, but the decision is not up to me.

So, if I become a Chief Select I plan on using this blog to document the process. If I do not, then I will delete this and try again next year.

HOOYAH Navy!

The Jetton Family


A message to my fellow law enforcement and sailor friends:

Sheila Jetton is a friend and co-worker of mine.  She is a police officer with the Chattanooga Police Department and she is also a Second Class Petty Officer in the Navy Reserves.  The below email was written by our Navy Ombudsman and gives more details then I ever could.

“Sheila Jetton is a member of NOSC Chattanooga.  She is also a proud mother to a beautiful baby girl named Elizabeth.  Elizabeth was born  on Dec 30th, 2009.   She has been diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension, pulmonary interstitial glycogenosis, abnornal lung growth, failure to thrive, global developmental delays, inominiate artery syndrome, and a neuronal migration disorder.  While Elizabeth lives with her mom and dad in Chattanooga, they are currently in Tx at a children’s hospital waiting and hoping for a lung transplant.   Elizabeth is about the happiest baby you could ever hope to meet, and she doesn’t let her fierce battle against these life threatening conditions break her smile at all.  She just  celebrated her first birthday, and with our help, and God’s help, she can celebrate many more!
As you can imagine, this family is facing tremendous odds right now.  On top of medical expenses, there are the travel expenses to and from hospitals, some hospitals being hundreds of miles away from where the family lives.  There are also the normal day to day living expenses that we all incur.
There are several ways you can help this family, the most important being to lift them up in prayer.  Other ways you can help them are: donate to any SunTrust Bank, under the Elizabeth Jetton Trust.  There are also several fundraisers for Elizabeth coming up.  The one this week will be held Thurs, Jan 6th, at 6pm at Middle Valley Church Of God.  It’s 5 dollars per person, and that will include a spaghetti dinner, along with dessert.  There will also be a silent auction held at the dinner.  As I get more information on future fundraisers for Elizabeth I will pass them along.  Below are links to Elizabeth’s Caringbridge website, and a link to an interview on Channel 3 WRCB, which featured a story on little Elizabeth and her brave battle.”

http://www.wrcbtv.com/global/video/flash/popupplayer.asp?vt1=v&clipFormat=flv&clipId1=5434718&a&rnd=52211006

Veteran’s Day


I attended the Waterville Elementary School PTO meeting tonight.  After the official meeting was over the second graders sang a couple of songs as a tribute to Veteran’s Day.  I’ll admit, I got a little misty eyed during the singing of “God Bless the USA”.  Being a veteran myself and currently serving as a selective reservist in the US Navy, I immediately began thinking about how much I love this country and how proud I am of every single American who serves or has served in the military.

At present I have a few friends who are deployed overseas in Iraq, Afghanistan or Kuwait.

Chief Petty Officer Diana Fleshman

Ltjg Dave Martin

Petty Officer Bryan Wood

Petty Officer Dennie Martin

And numerous other fine sailors from NOSC Chattanooga.

Happy Veteran’s Day and thank you for all that you do!

Hooyah Navy!

Navy Birthday Ball


Last night NOSC Chattanooga hosted the 235th Navy Birthday Ball at the Colonnade in North Georgia. Here is a picture of my girlfriend Annie and I just before we left for the ball. I’ll post more pictures after I process them.