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Stennis Strike Group
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NAVAL BASE CORONADO (Aug. 10, 2016) Damage Controlman 2nd Class Devin Bingley meets his child for the first time after returning from a seven-month deployment. Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9 is disembarking from John C. Stennis in San Diego before the ship returns to its homeport in Bremerton, Washington. Providing a combat-ready force to protect collective maritime interests, John C. Stennis is returning from a regularly scheduled Western Pacific deployment. U.S. Navy photo by MC3 Andre T. Richard
NAVAL BASE CORONADO (Aug. 10, 2016) Damage Controlman 2nd Class Devin Bingley meets his child for the first time after returning from a seven-month deployment. Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 9 is disembarking from John C. Stennis in San Diego before the ship returns to its homeport in Bremerton, Washington. Providing a combat-ready force to protect collective maritime interests, John C. Stennis is returning from a regularly scheduled Western Pacific deployment. U.S. Navy photo by MC3 Andre T. Richard

Welcome home: Stennis Strike Group returns to San Diego
8/10/2016
by Lt. j.g. Emily Wilkin, John C. Stennis Strike Group Public Affairs

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- More than 7,000 John C. Stennis Strike Group (JCSSG) Sailors returned to San Diego following a regularly scheduled seven-month deployment to the Indo-Asia-Pacific region Aug 10.
JCSSG left on deployment Jan. 15 and operated in both U.S. 3rd and 7th Fleet areas of responsibility -- including more than 60 days in the South China Sea.
Aircrew from CVW 9 squadrons returned home Aug. 9 after conducting a "fly-off" of aircraft from John C. Stennis. The remaining air wing personnel rode the ship to Naval Air Station North Island where they offloaded their equipment and the rest of their personnel.
John C. Stennis and JCSSG staff will return to their homeport of Bremerton, Washington, following the brief stop in San Diego.
DESRON 21 ships Stockdale and William P. Lawrence, and JCSSG air and missile defense commander Mobile Bay returned to Naval Base San Diego Aug. 11. Full Story

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Capt. Roy Love is new skipper at Naval Base San Diego
SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- Capt. Roy Love relieved Capt. Curt Jones as commanding officer of Naval Base San Diego (NBSD) during a change of command ceremony Aug. 4. ......read more

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

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Around San Diego This Weekend

San Diego military news

PACIFIC OCEAN (July 18, 2016) Undersecretary of the Navy Dr. Janine Davidson passes through the ceremonial rainbow sideboys as she arrives aboard the amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) for a scheduled visit. America is underway conducting maritime exercises with partner nations for Rim of the Pacific 2016. Twenty-six nations, more than 40 ships and submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC from June 30 to Aug. 4, in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California. The world's largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world's oceans. RIMPAC 2016 is the 25th exercise in the series that began in 1971. U.S. Navy photo by MCSN Jacob Holloway.
PACIFIC OCEAN (July 18, 2016) Undersecretary of the Navy Dr. Janine Davidson passes through the ceremonial rainbow sideboys as she arrives aboard the amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) for a scheduled visit. America is underway conducting maritime exercises with partner nations for Rim of the Pacific 2016. Twenty-six nations, more than 40 ships and submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC from June 30 to Aug. 4, in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California. The world's largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world's oceans. RIMPAC 2016 is the 25th exercise in the series that began in 1971. U.S. Navy photo by MCSN Jacob Holloway
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Under Secretary of the Navy visits newest amphib during RIMPAC
7/21/2016
by MC1 Demetrius Kennon, USS America (LHA 6) Public Affairs

PACIFIC OCEAN (NNS) -- Under Secretary of the Navy Dr. Janine Davidson visited amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) while the ship was underway participating in the 2016 Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise, July 18.
During her time aboard, Davidson toured the combat information center, amphibious air traffic control center, joint information center, a main engine room, and ate on the ship's mess decks with Sailors and Marines.
America's history and future were among the topics of discussion during the under secretary's lunch with the crew.
"It made me feel like I had some input in what the future of the Navy is going to be like," said Quartermaster 3rd Class Dartagnan Carcana, assigned to America. "It was a nice experience knowing that what I said is being heard."
"A lot of people were really nervous at first just because it was a VIP visit, but afterward the consensus was 'that was pretty cool,'" said Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Tavaris Hobbs, assigned to Fleet Surgical Team 1 with Commander, Amphibious Squadron 3. "It's something that you'll rarely be able to do in your naval career."
Davidson said visiting the ship during the world's largest multinational maritime exercise was high on her list of things to do, and she appreciated talking to the Sailors, Marines and partners aboard to hear about how much they're learning and how much they enjoy their jobs.
"You can't come out here and not be amazed at the choreographed ballet that is [amphibious] operations, especially out on the flight deck," Davidson said.
RIMPAC provides the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps the opportunity to evaluate gear, new equipment, and new operational concepts; and being able to conduct these assessments on a multinational level is critical.
"We can tell and test the degree to which our interoperability and the way in which we cooperate together has improved over time, so it absolutely pays multiple dividends," said Davidson. When nations work together during exercises such as RIMPAC, they will be better prepared to respond in the future, because it won't be the first time working together as a multinational team, she added.
While aboard, Davidson toured the ship with Capt. Michael W. Baze, America's commanding officer. One stop on the tour was a main engine room. Davidson was particularly interested in the ship's hybrid electric drive and fuel conservation efforts as part of the Great Green Fleet initiative.
America's hybrid electric propulsion system uses a gas turbine engine as well as an electric motor and diesel generator. The electric motor propels the ship through the water while the generator produces the ship's electricity. Similar to a hybrid car, once the ship reaches 12 knots, the gas-turbine engine kicks in.
High ranking officials tour ships to get a glimpse of the practical application of their decisions made for the good of Sailors and Marines and the equipment they operate. In many cases, the officials have been in the Sailors' shoes and are working to improve the way ahead.
"I wholeheartedly believe that visits like these are necessary for the crew," said Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Ricky Williams, assigned to America. "As much as we get wrapped into our routines, to be able to get that outside look at everything ... and know that they do care enough to take that time to spend with us Sailors, that means a lot to me personally."
"I know it takes a little bit away from your day-to-day operations, but it's incredibly important and really, really valuable for people like me and also for our congressional partners and our international partners to be able to take a day like this and walk through and actually see what's happening," said Davidson. "We have to make decisions every day, and having a sense of what you're doing out here, what challenges you have, is incredibly valuable."
Twenty-six nations, more than 40 ships and submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC from June 30 to Aug. 4, in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California. The world's largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea lanes and security on the world's oceans. RIMPAC 2016 is the 25th exercise in the series that began in 1971.

Family Medicine O'side Clinic to close
The Family Medicine Oceanside Clinic, located off-base in Oceanside, Calif. will be closing Aug. 31, 2016.
“With the relocation of Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton to just inside the main gate of the base, and increased requirements for anti-terrorism protection, we felt that our beneficiaries would be better served at our new state—of-the-art facility or one of the branch clinics on base,” said Cmdr. Todd Lauby, the NHCP director of branch clinics.
All the staff will be relocated to either the hospital or one of the branch clinics on base and letters with detailed information will be sent to all current patients who are seen at the FMOC.
“Because we are concerned about maintaining continuity of care, every effort will be made to ensure our patients remain with their current primary care manager,” explained Lauby. “If this is not possible, we will work closely with each patient to ensure their healthcare needs are met by a new PCM.”
For questions, please contact Ms. Henrietta Wilson-Escobar or Petty Officer 2nd Class Carlos Medina at (760) 754-0974.


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).

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National military news
Sailors taking Fall classes should start Tuition Assistance approval process now
7/21/2016
by Ed Barker,
Naval Education and Training Professional Development Center

PENSACOLA, Fla. (NNS) -- Sailors planning to take college courses this fall using Tuition Assistance (TA) should submit their requests as soon as possible, so they may be reviewed and approved before classes start.
According to Ernest D'Antonio, the Naval Education and Training Professional Development Technology Center's Voluntary Education (VOLED) program director, the number one reason for problems with TA requests is late applications.
"Summer is a historically slow time in terms of receiving and processing TA requests," said D'Antonio. "Sailors who get a head start on their applications have the best chance of having their requests approved. Service members are required to obtain approval for TA funding before the official start of a course."
D'Antionio added TA approval is a multi-step process, and if there is a problem, the request gets held-up until the Virtual Education Center (VEC) staff can troubleshoot and fix it.
"It's crucial for commands to make sure that their Sailors know to start the process early, so that TA applications can be completed by the VEC in advance of the deadline," he said. "We are currently authorizing TA requests based on term start dates."
VEC Supervisor Susan Sutter noted TA applications are funded on a first-come, first-served basis.
"There's no risk in applying early; we can modify or cancel the TA voucher after the fact if necessary with no harm to the Sailor," she said. "But if TA requests are received by the VOLED team on or after the class begins, the TA requests will be denied in accordance with policy guidelines -- putting Sailors in a potentially tough financial situation if the course is not dropped. That's why early TA submission, coupled with a well-defined education/degree plan is strongly recommended."
Sutter detailed the required steps that must be taken for a TA request to be approved; Sailors must:
1) Be counseled by their local Navy College Office or the VEC
2) Complete WebTA training
3) Have an education/degree plan on file (with the course that the Sailor is requesting TA for included in the plan)
4) Receive command approval on their TA request
"Sailors also must have completed at least 12 months on board their first permanent duty station, have no missing grades, not owe the Navy any funds for incomplete or failed courses, and have an end-of-obligated service date after the course ends," Sutter added.
Both D'Antonio and Sutter also stressed Sailors should monitor their information and status through the MyEducation portal on the Navy College website to ensure their accounts are posted and accurate, and their degree plans are current. The MyEducation portal is available 24/7.
If a Sailor or command have any questions or experience any problems, they should contact the VEC for assistance. The VEC is open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. EST Monday-Friday and may be reached by calling 1-(877) 838-1659, or by email at VEC@navy.mil.
For more information on the Navy College Program and the Virtual Education Center visit http://www.navycollege.navy.mil/ or http://www.facebook.com/NavyVoluntaryEducation/.

Three new Navy training apps now available
June 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.

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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 utr@usosandiego.org to make your appointment. This program is offered at both USO San Diego centers.

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