News: Sailor recognized for accomplishments alongside Marines
Story by 2nd Lt. Danielle Phillips
MIHAIL KOGALNICEANU, Romania – One of the closest relationships in the military is between a Marine unit and their Navy corpsman. Marines with Black Sea Rotational Force 14 understand and value that relationship enough to highlight some of the sailors who continue to perform beyond the requirements. Marines and sailors who continue to demonstrate exceptional performance and effective leadership compete for the title, “Marine of the Week.” Each week, BSRF-14’s leadership meets and recommends eligible Marines and sailors. BSRF-14’s officer-in-charge makes the final decision.
Petty Officer Third Class Brent Babcock, a hospital corpsman with BSRF-14, was awarded Marine of the Week for outstanding performance and leadership at Mihail Kogalniceanu, Romania, Sept. 27, 2013.
This award shows the command’s appreciation to Marines and sailors with BSRF-14 for demonstrating superior professional development, leadership, and adherence to the values of honor, courage and commitment.
“My job is to provide health care for all the Marines and sailors and maintain medical readiness so we are always ready to deploy in a moment’s notice,” said Babcock. “We also teach [Marines] to be corpsmen, essentially, so if we get injured or they get injured, [Marines] can still help themselves.”
Chief Petty Officer Rodrick Jones, the BSRF-14 Battalion Aid Station’s senior enlisted advisor, describes Babcock as the personality of the medical staff. His enthusiasm and work ethic are readily apparent.
“I try to motivate every day,” said Babcock.
“He’s an outstanding sailor…and has a good sense of humor. He’s keeps the clinic alive. The motivation level is high because of him,” Jones confessed.
Babcock is also the clinic’s supply petty officer.
“[Babcock] took the initiative to do a lot of the things we never asked him to do. He reconsolidated thousands of dollars worth of supply equipment with an inventory list,” said Jones.
The ability to provide inoculations, sick-call, and combat lifesaving techniques to Marines makes the Navy corpsmen an asset for the Marines. Carrying more than 60 pounds in protective and lifesaving gear, they are involved in every training and tactical exercise ranging from the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program to live-fire ranges. During the first full-year rotation of BSRF-14, medical aid and assistance will continue to be needed. On a more personal level, this type of appreciation means a lot to the individual sailors who work alongside these Marines every day.
“They do MCMAP, we do MCMAP. They go to the field, we go to the field. They do patrols, we do patrols; our corpsman do everything our Marines do,” said Jones. “Having a fellow sailor being recognized alongside the Marines is a great honor for us.”
Despite being the first sailor to receive this award, Babcock remains humble and task oriented.
“I didn’t expect [Marine of the Week]. I just do my job to the best of my ability,” said Babcock.
BSRF-14 will conduct military-to-military engagements with Romanian and partner-nation forces from around the Black Sea, Balkan and Caucasus regions. This is the first annual rotation in order to promote regional stability and security, increase military capacity and interoperability, as well as bolster and maintain partnerships with their counterparts in Eastern Europe.