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    NSA Bahrain Holds Chief Pinning Ceremony

    NSA Bahrain Holds Chief Pinning Ceremony

    Photo By Petty Officer 2nd Class Jonathan Nye | MANAMA, Bahrain (Sept. 28, 2023) Chief Hospital Corpsman Brandon Ponder receives his...... read more read more

    NAVAL SUPPORT ACTIVITY BAHRAIN (Sept. 28, 2023) Fifteen Sailors and one Marine from U.S. Naval Support Activity (NSA) Bahrain earned the title of “chief” during a chief petty officer (CPO) pinning ceremony at NSA Bahrain, Sept. 28.

    The pinning ceremony was the capstone event to six weeks of CPO initiation which began when advancement results were released in August.
    During initiation, the NSA Chiefs’ Mess introduced those who were selected for advancement to challenges designed to build on their leadership skills and provide a better understanding of what it means to be a Navy chief.
    Command Master Chief Karl Critides, NSA Bahrain’s command master chief, spoke during the ceremony, congratulating the 15 chief selectees and honorary Marine, representing 4 commands, on their selection and offered perspective on their recent leadership journey.
    “Six weeks ago, these top performing, confident, and ambitious first class petty officers received the news every Sailor dreams of – congratulations, you were selected for advancement to chief petty officer,” said Critides, who enlisted in the Navy in August 2001. “They celebrated with smiles, laughter, and phone calls to loved ones and mentors. Their hard work and dedication had finally paid off, and they were floating on cloud nine. They were confident, ambitious, and up for any challenge that might lie ahead.”
    Critides also said that reality quickly set in for the newly selected chief petty officers as the group came to the realization that they had not yet arrived. He said, each day moving forward proved to be harder and full of new challenges.
    “They soon learned the only way to succeed was to work together as a team, stay motivated, and to embrace a new concept, becoming a humble servant to the Navy and her Sailors,” said Critides. “Nearly 40 days later, amongst countless trials and tribulations, I can say with confidence that this group rose to the occasion, and I could not be more proud of them.”
    Among others who played a part in the ceremony was guest speaker Capt. Zachariah Aperauch, NSA Bahrain’s commanding officer. Addressing the new chief petty officers as they stood in ranks across from those they would soon join, he spoke of the significance of their new roles.
    “The history of chief petty officers is woven into the very fabric of the Navy, with stories of heroism and unwavering dedication,” said Aperauch, a 1999 officer candidate school graduate. “As an example, amidst the chaos of the Pearl Harbor attack, as the USS Utah was on the brink of capsizing, Chief Petty Officer Peter Tomich’s unwavering courage made the difference.”
    Aperauch recounted how Tomich selflessly remained at his post in the ship’s engine room, ensuring the safety of this shipmates by securing the boilers selflessly preventing a catastrophic explosion. For his actions, Tomich would be posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.
    “Such profound bravery and sacrifice defines the very spirit of a chief petty officer, emphasizing the role they play in safeguarding not just our ships, but the lives of our shipmates,” said Aperauch.
    The rank of chief petty officer was established in 1893 and originally included nine ratings. Today, chiefs are regarded for their technical expertise within their ratings, superior administrative abilities, and strong leadership abilities. Chiefs serve as both supervisors and advocates for their Sailors, bridging the gap between the Navy’s officer and enlisted personnel.
    NSA Bahrain’s mission is to support U.S. and coalition maritime operations throughout the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations by providing security for ships, aircraft and tenants on board NSA Bahrain and assigned detachments. NSA Bahrain provides efficient and effective shore services to sustain the fleet, enable the fighter and support the family with honor, courage, and commitment.



    Date Taken: 09.28.2023
    Date Posted: 10.10.2023 02:46
    Story ID: 454795
    Location: BH

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