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Naval Air Museum Page 2

National Kidney Month Page 5

Prescribed airfield burn Page 7 VOLUME 70, NUMBER 11


MARCH 21, 2013

Pax Flying Club brings T-34B Mentor aboard

By Dr. Philip Mock Guest contributor

The Patuxent River Navy Flying Club recently made a new addition to its fleet of aircraft available for patrons to fly by bringing aboard a Beechcraft T-34B Mentor. While new to the flying club, the Mentor itself is a Navy veteran as it was selected by the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard in 1955 to replace the SNJ Texan for pilot training. This particular Mentor came to Pax from the flying club at NAS Whidbey Island, Wash. When the PRNFC club manager, Joe Dziewit, learned it was coming available, he made arrangements to bring it to Pax. In January, the club president and chief flight instructor were off to ferry the aircraft from the West Coast to Pax. When they taxied up to the club ramp at the end of their transcontinental journey, they were tired but said they were thankful for having the opportunity to see so much of the U.S. in a way so few ever experience.

Courtesy photo

New to the Patuxent River Navy Flying Club’s aircraft lineup, this Beechcraft T-34B Mentor offers a classic throttle and stick configuration, and resembles an old Warbird with its bowed canopy. Originally designed as a Navy and Air Force flight

trainer, the Mentor has tandem seating for student-

pilot and instructor with a bowed canopy resembling

those of old Warbirds. “In flight, clear Plexiglas

is the only thing between you and the heavens,” Dziewit said. “Like an old Warbird, the T-34B has the classic throttle and stick configuration, and is responsive to the controls.” Because of the Mentor’s powerful engine and complex controls, high performance and complex aircraft endorsements are necessary to fly this airplane. Instructors at the Patuxent River Navy Flying Club can help people earn these endorsements. The PRNFC has several Cessna and Piper aircraft as well as this T-34 available for rent and for flight training to current pilots and those who want to fly. PRNFC also offers a Private Pilots Ground School twice each year. For more information, contact Joe Dziewit at 301862-1110 or stop by their monthly meeting at 5:30 p.m. every second Tuesday of the month at the flying club; building 336 at the intersection of Cedar Point Road and taxiway ALPHA near the post office.

Housing residents will soon see mock utility billing

By Connie Hempel NAS Patuxent River

Lincoln military housing residents at NAS Patuxent River are soon to be part of DOD’s Resident Energy Conservation Program as Navy installations join other services in the pursuit of energy efficiency in privatized housing. The Resident Energy Conservation Program, commonly called RECP, was initiated in 1998 as an energy cost-saving measure to help reduce the nation’s dependence on foreign oil and other fossil fuels. It is a Secretary of Defense policy which required privatized housing residents, such as those living in Lincoln military housing communities on and off the naval air station, to be responsible for the utilities they consume. “For this year’s RECP roll out, only the accountability for electricity consumption will be transferred from

Courtesy graphic

[Lincoln military housing] to the resident,” Capt. Ted Mills, NAS Patuxent River commanding officer, wrote in a letter to residents. “Future phases of the program may also include gas.” Exceptions to the RECP policy include: Wounded, ill and injured service members. Residents with documented Exceptional Family Members and military personnel with disabilities that require excess utility usage may request a waiver for exception. Patricia Anderson, the Housing Program director here, said RECP provides residents with financial incentives for energy conser-

vation, too. “Cost savings are reinvested back into the housing community where our service members and their families reside,” Anderson said. “These funds will be placed into reserve accounts for renovations and improvements to homes and neighborhoods.” Residents whose monthly utility usage is below a set Normal Usage Band for likekind properties, will earn a rebate. When the accumulated rebate exceeds $25, the resident is issued a check. Residents can also “bank” their rebates and use them for future payments. Since the RECP an-

nouncement was made more than a decade ago, local electric companies have been installing meters on privatized homes at military installations across the U.S., allowing for individual unit meter readings. Southern Maryland Electric Company recently completed installing meters at Pax’s privatized housing areas on and off the installation For the past few months, Lincoln military housing and installation leadership at Pax have been campaigning to inform residents on what they can expect in the coming months as the transfer of utility responsibly progresses here.

Homes will be assigned to a like-type group, and the monthly average usage of these homes will be calculated. This average includes a 10 percent above and below the average buffer to establish a normal usage band. As Naval District Washington implements RECP, privatized housing residents at Pax and other NDW can expect to begin receiving mock bills in July, and live bills in October. The threemonth mock billing phase allows residents time to adjust their consumption to the normal usage band for their like-type housing “Consider the three-

month mock billing phase as a practice round,” Mills said. “As residents become familiar with the program during this phase, they can proactively make adjustments to their energy consumption behavior.” Residents can request an energy audit inspection for their home through Lincoln. The audit will assess household usage and can identify potential conservation opportunities through behavior changes or modifications to features of the home. During mock billing, none of the residents will pay or receive rebates for utility usage. However, Anderson suggests residents use this time to request energy audits to help identify energy-saving strategies particular to their home. Town hall meetings about RECP in NAS Pax River housing are in the

See Bill, Page 9



Thursday, March 21, 2013

Navy League hosts annual ski trip for Marines and Sailors

Courtesy photo

Sailors and Marines assigned to NAS Patuxent River joined the Patuxent River Council of the Navy League on its annual three-day trip to Timberline lodge ski resort in West Virginia earlier this month. The Navy League has provided these all-expense paid trips for Sailors and Marines since 2007. The trips are funded by donations.

Naval Air Museum depends on visitors, volunteers By Donna Cipolloni Tester staff writer With the new Patuxent River Naval Air Museum building under construction, Amy Houle Caruso, volunteer chairperson of the museum events committee, has big ideas for the future. One of those ideas was the recently launched Meet the Airplane series, a bimonthly event where visitors to the museum can “meet” some of the aircraft that call Pax River home by viewing them up close and having experts answer questions about them. “We’re hoping to reach those members of the community who drive by Pax River every day and wonder what happens beyond the gates,” explained Caruso, program manager with the AV-8B Harrier Program Office (PMA-257). “Just about everything that goes on at Pax has a prototype at the museum and we can use that heritage as a bridging tool to open the gates a little.” This past December, museum visitors met the E2 Hawkeye, the Navy’s main radar aircraft; and in February, they were introduced to the mock-up of the X-47A Pegasus, predecessor to the current demonstrator aircraft, the X-47B unmanned

combat air system. The next event comes in April, and to coincide with the 70th anniversary of Pax River’s commissioning, Caruso plans to feature the F6 Hellcat, the oldest aircraft on the flightline. “We want to share in the history of the base and in our relationship with the base,” Caruso said. Although the naval air museum and installation are separate entities, Sailors and personnel from Pax sometimes assist with museum events by answering questions or staffing hands-on display stations. “Through goodwill and communications, we have a close relationship with the base,” Caruso said. “We welcome anyone in uniform to come out and represent Pax to our visitors.”

Volunteers needed for implementation of future projects

Beyond the assistance provided by Pax participants, the most important cog required to keep the museum’s wheels rolling forward is its staff of volunteers. The museum is run nearly 100 percent by volunteers and with fewer than 50 volunteers currently, more are needed to provide visitor services, help conduct edu-

U.S. Navy photo by Donna Cipolloni

Visitors to the Patuxent River Naval Air Museum check out the mock-up of the X-47A Pegasus during a February event, part of the recently launched Meet the Airplane series. PRNAM relies heavily on its volunteer staff to bring its exhibit ideas to fruition and with the new building under way, more volunteers will be needed to carry out future plans and events. cational programs, coordinate exhibits and work behind the scenes. But Caruso admits they’re in transition in that area. “We still have growing pains on coordination and communication and with finding good fits for our volunteers,” she said. “We’ve put together a committee called the Volunteer Squad-

ron to help write up basic ground rules, but we’re looking for a director. We need more volunteers to develop our future plans but, more importantly at this time, we need a program that would effectively identify, schedule and put to work what volunteers we have.” Caruso said they can use individuals with clerical and IT skills; history buffs; art-

ists to help with signage and exhibits; writers for marketing communications; volunteer coordinators; and people who simply enjoy meeting the public, working with children, selling raffle tickets, or setting up and breaking down displays. No museum background is necessary and anyone, high school age or older, is welcome.

Caruso’s stepson, Adam, contract foodservice director at a local high school, began volunteering about six months ago and has been managing the museum’s Facebook page. “We want to broaden the museum’s visibility by reaching out to people online,” he said. “We hope to reach new audiences and draw them inside.” Among other ideas being tossed around for future consideration are museum sleepovers for youth groups and destination fly-ins for various airplane clubs. “We have lots of ideas and there’s no reason we can’t execute them if we have the volunteers,” Caruso said. “With the new museum under construction, we need to start thinking about things now so that what we put in there is better than what we’ve done in the past.” The Patuxent River Naval Air Museum is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Thursday through Sunday; closed Mondays. Admission is free. Visit or search Patuxent River Naval Air Museum on Facebook. “Being in on the ground floor, any volunteer who comes in now will make a difference,” Caruso said. “You can’t come in here and not make a difference—and that’s really exciting.”


Thursday, March 21, 2013


Relief Society offers Is being ‘good enough’ good enough? financial help, education Chaplains corner: By Father Mike Dolan Guest contributor

This past Sunday marked the fifth Sunday in Lent and St. Patrick’s feast day. The scriptural readings at Mass referred to people who were afraid and suffering, not knowing whether or how they were going to live or die. It was as if each were responding to the same question Jesus, the incarnate Word of God, asked of John, Andrew and Bartimaeus, “What are you looking for?” and “What do you want me to do for you?” In each case, Jesus responded positively with help, assurance, direction and forgiveness. That raised the question in my mind as to how would Jesus respond if he were asked the same questions by you or me. Almost 70 years ago I had marched as a fifer in my parish band in the famous New York City St. Patrick’s Day parade. I had done so for many years and it was always a proud and rewarding experience. Our performance was measured against the grand

performance of the parade leaders the New York National Guard regiment known since Civil War days as “The Fighting 69th.” These were row upon row of bannered troops with silver helmet liners, silk cravats, shouldered rifles, straight lines and locked steps in pressed khaki uniforms. We were led by the best and we would not do less than our best. I thought of the music we used to play and “Onward Christian Soldiers” came quickly to mind. I am sad to say I haven’t heard that played for many years. Now, 70 years or so later, as the parade approached, I saw the flags in full array and heard the martial music

playing. Closer and closer they came until the 69th was passing in front of me, but it wasn’t the 69th I had remembered. There were about 12 troops in desert fatigues some handling wolf hounds and shuffling up 5th Avenue. As I watched other units pass, I found that such behavior was more or less the norm. When leadership is in disarray, one cannot expect more from those who follow. Could it be the “good enough” philosophy pervading various aspects of our society is now the acceptable standard of all conduct? What happened to the admonition to be the best you can be in Matthew 5:45? Is it an anachronism of no current value or significance? It was at this point that I wondered what Jesus would answer if asked by you or me, “What are you looking for from us?” I dare say his response would not be for us to be just “good enough.” He would want us to be at our best, and if we won’t give him the best, then why should we— how can we—expect the best from him?

Fundraising effort under way By Connie Hempel NAS Patuxent River Public Affairs The annual Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society fund drive is in full swing and continues through April. Through the fund drive, NAS Patuxent River employees and service members can give back to an organization that provided more than $163,000 in assistance last year alone. The Society helps Sailors and Marines who are on active-duty, retired or in the reserves, as well as eligible family members and widows in need of financial assistance with interest-free loans and grants, financial counseling and other support services. It also offers educational scholarships. The top two financial hardships Maureen Farrell, NMCRS manager at Pax, said she’s noticed here are basic living expenses, rent

and utilities, and vehicle repairs. However, regardless of the need, she encourages people to stop by the NMCRS office in building 401. “Generally, everything that goes on here is completely confidential,” Farrell said. The Society goes beyond monetary help, too. With a focus on financial education and responsibility, Farrell and her team of trained volunteers strive to help others make a life-long difference. “Financial education is all about choices and how you want to live,” she said. Financial education services at NMCRS include budget planning, building an emergency savings and planning financially for a new baby through its free monthly “Budgeting for Baby” class. Open to new and experienced parents, participants in the “Budgeting for Baby”

class learn about the immediate costs of bringing a baby home, and discuss planning for future expenses such as college; they also receive a “baby sea bag” filled with baby items. Being good stewards to its donated dollars, the Society does not offer assistance to: Pay for non-essentials, finance liberty or vacations, pay fines or legal expenses, pay taxes, finance recreational boats or vehicles, or help families live beyond their means. Find out more on how you can make a difference through the NMCRS by calling 301-342-4739 or online at The Pax River NMCRS office is open Monday through Thursday from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. in building 401, next to the St. Nicholas Chapel. After hours, call the Chiefs After Hours number at 301342-1095.

News briefs On base:

In the March 14 Tester, the Dental Clinic, CDC celebrate Children’s Dental Health Month in correctly identified the location of the Dental Clinic’s visit as being the Child Development Center. The correct location is Imagination Early Learning Center in California.

a semi-annual mandatory requirement all Active-duty and Reserve Navy personnel, DOD civilians, all family members and Overseas contractors. To update contact data, login to NFAAS and update information under the “My Info” tab and “Contact Information” section. Edit member and family member information as necessary and verify as current. All family members enrolled in the Exceptional Family Member program must be identified as such.

Stage movie. The same person cannot win more than once a month. Last week’s winner was Gary Banaszak. Contest calls are not taken after 4:30 p.m. Friday. Call the Tester staff at 301-342-4163.

AtHoc Registrations

Income Tax Assistance

Weekdays, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. NAS Patuxent River Legal Office The Navy’s Volunteer Income Tax Assistance/Electronic Tax Filing program offers active-duty and retired military, family members and some Reservists free self-service electronic tax filing. Stop by NAS Patuxent River Legal Office in building 409 for more details and to pick up a VITA intake form. Appointments are available until April 15. Call 301342-7643.

Deadline: April 15 Aug. 13-18 in Estes Park, Colo. Registrations for the sixth annual Air Force Reserve/Air National Guard Teen Leadership Summits are available at This week-long camp is for Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard family members between ages 14-18. Focus is on leadership development and self-confidence, information on programs and services available to Air Force family members, and building an appreciation for and sense of belonging to the Air Force community.

NMCRS Scholarships, Interest-Free Loans

College Opportunities Survey

Correction Notice

The purple globe option for AtHoc registration has been re-established and is now available for use. To access, right click on globe located at the bottom right portion of your computer screen, select “Access Self Service,” then “Devices.” Under the devices tab, you can add all of the devices you would like to receive alerts on. If you continue to have issues with registration, contact or

Burger Burn (hot dogs, too)

Tuesdays, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. NAWCAD headquarters, building 2185 Support the NAS Patuxent River Recreation Committee.

Fish Dinner at NAS Patuxent River Chapel

Fridays, 5-7 p.m.; until March 22 Building 401 All are welcome to join the chapel’s Annual Fish Dinners. Menu includes fried tilapia, French fries, potato salad, Cole slaw, macaroni and cheese, green salad, rolls and desserts. Each week one additional food—fried oysters, fried shrimp, shrimp fried rice, shrimp pancit, shrimp lumpia or crab soup—will be made added to the menu. Suggested donation: $8, adults; $6, youths ages 6-12; and free for children ages 5 and younger.

Navy Family Accountability and Assessment System Update

It is now that time of the year to update and verify personal information in the Navy Family Accountability and Assessment System at This is

Eligible applicants includes spouses or youths age 22 and younger of Sailors and Marines who are on active duty, retired or died while on active duty or in a retired status. Apply at

NMCRS Quick Assist Loans

Active-duty Sailors and Marines can apply for a Quick Assist Loan (QAL) for up to $500 at the Navy Marine Corps Relief Society (NMCRS) Full Service Office. Most QALs can be processed on a walk-in basis in 15 minutes. Active-duty Marines and Sailors must apply in person. QALs are shortterm, interest-free loans available to service members facing a family emergency or other urgent financial situation and are available Sailors and Marines on active duty, have no outstanding loans with NMCRS, and in need of help with basic living expenses or family emergencies.

Where’s Gnorman?

Somewhere in this issue we’ve hidden Gnorman the gnome. Be the first to call in his location and receive two free Center Stage Theater movie tickets; good for any Center

Off base:

Air Force Teen Leadership Summits

The Southern Maryland Higher Education Council, with the support of the Patuxent Partnership, is conducting a survey to determine the demand for increased college opportunity in Charles, Calvert and St. Mary’s counties. The survey takes 5-7 minutes to complete. Responses are confidential, and nothing on the survey is used for marketing, telemarketing or commercial purposes. The survey will help the Southern Maryland Higher Education Council recommend ways to formulate long- and short-term plans to improve access to higher education in the area. Complete the survey at

Navy-Marine Corps Ball

Saturday, 6 p.m. Washington Hilton, Washington D.C. The 2013 Navy-Marine Corps Ball benefits the NavyMarine Corps Relief Society. Navy attire: Dinner dress blue jacket or equivalent. Marine Corps attire: Evening dress “B” or dress blue/white “A.” Civilian attire: Black tie. Register at, email or call 202-8898112/8113.



Thursday, March 21, 2013

Navy completes EMALS shared generator testing

By Kristine Wilcox Aircraft Launch and Recovery Equipment (PMA-251) Communications Support

The Navy’s future carrier aircraft launch system concluded a unique test event March 14, earlier than planned. The Aircraft Launch and Recovery Equipment Program Office (PMA-251)’s Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) from NAS Patuxent River completed shared generator testing at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. EMALS is replacing the current steam catapult system on aircraft carriers, beginning with the Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). “It is important that we ensure proper sharing and operation of the generators at the land-based facility prior to testing the full four-catapult system onboard CVN 78, reducing risk to the ship,” said George Sulich, EMALS integrated team lead. With EMALS, the aircraft is attached to a shuttle that is propelled down the length of the catapult track by an electromagnetic field produced by the linear motors. The motor generator stores the system’s energy in the inertia of its rotor and releases that energy upon initiation of the aircraft launch. EMALS consists of six subsystems working together and sharing components to power the four catapults on the ship. The test site has only one catapult so, up to now; the system has had to control only one launcher. After completing the system functional demonstration phase in November 2012, the EMALS team readied the site to replicate a four-catapult ship environment. The test-

U.S. Navy photo

The Electromagnetic Aircraft Launch System (EMALS) motor generator stores energy in the inertia of its rotor and releases that energy upon initiation of the aircraft launch onboard carriers. EMALS completed shared generator testing at Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, N.J. EMALS is replacing the current steam catapult system on aircraft carriers, beginning with the Gerald R. Ford (CVN 78). ing simulated generator-sharing for multiple catapults by launching dead-loads, or weighted sleds.

Suicide Awareness/Prevention

April 2, 3-4 p.m. This program is designed to raise awareness about the issues surrounding suicide. Learn to identify the warning signs, how to respond to a suicidal person and information on how to access local resources. A video is utilized which combines narration and scenarios to illustrate the above topics.

Are you properly insured for life’s stages?

Open to active-duty and retired military, Reservists and their family members. Reservations are necessary and can be made at Fleet and Family Support Center in building 2090 or by calling 301-342-4911.

April 3, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (brown bag) The purpose of insurance is to shift major financial risks to insurance companies. Without adequate formal insurance, you are, in reality, self-insuring, and for most of us that means severe financial hardship. The purpose of this workshop we’ll explore ways to get the best bang for your insurance dollars.

Playgroup at Glen Forrest Community Center

Marriage is a Work of Heart

Thursdays, 10-11 a.m. Moms, dads and caregivers are invited to bring their children for playtime at the Glen Forrest Community Center.

SAPR Advocate Training

Monday through March 28, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. A victim advocate is a trained volunteer who provides effective and appropriate support and guidance for victims of sexual assault. This training will prepare volunteers for the initial contact with victims and help them through the investigative, medical and judicial processes that they opt to pursue.

April 9, 8:30-10 a.m. The goal of this class is to provide couples with new ideas and tools to help them continue to build together the marriage they envisioned. Join us and practice Speaker Listener Technique to enhance communication even on the toughest issues.

Parenting SOS: Ages 5-12

April 9, 16 and 23, noon to 2 p.m. (three sessions) Are you frustrated trying to find an effective and positive way to discipline your children? Parenting SOS offers a variety of evidence-based parenting techniques that will

“As EMALS successfully completes another test phase, I am confident we are providing the fleet with a reliable and efficient system that will revolutionize the way we launch aircraft from the Navy’s newest class of carriers,” said Capt. Jim Donnelly, PMA-251 program manager. Sulich attributed the team’s ability to team start and finish formal shared testing earlier than planned, to good preparation and coordination. One such preparation, he said, was using a ship representative controls lab, located at prime industry partner General Atomics’ facility in Rancho Bernardo, Calif., to conduct extensive modeling and simulation of the four-catapult system, ensuring the launch controls were set up correctly. “Instead of using the full-scale system at Lakehurst to test the full EMALS software suite, we used the ship-representative controls lab,” Sulich said. “By using the lab before we started formal testing, we were able to groom the software so that during commissioning testing we weren’t really discovering anything new.” EMALS is designed to expand the operational capability of the Navy’s future carriers to include all current and future carrier air wing platforms - lightweight unmanned to heavy strike fighters. It delivers necessary higher launch energy capacity; substantial improvements in system maintenance; increased reliability and efficiency; and more accurate end-speed control. The system’s technologies allow for a smooth acceleration at both high and low speeds, increasing the carrier’s ability to launch aircraft with less stress on the ship and its systems. help promote positive effective parenting. We will help you break down the difficult task of parenting into straightforward steps and provide you with parenting techniques you can implement immediately.

Interviewing Techniques

April 10, 1-4 p.m. Prepare for your upcoming job interview by practicing personal presentation skills such as answering common interview questions, writing follow-up and thank-you letters, and negotiating job offers.

Anger Management

April 11, 18, and 25, 2-4 p.m. (three, two-hour sessions) Anger is a basic emotion. Join this three-session workshop if you would like a better understanding of anger and would like to learn how to skillfully express and manage your anger in an effective way.

Infant Massage at Glen Forrest Community Center

April 11 and 18, 9-9:45 a.m. Learn the benefits of touching and massaging your baby.


April 15-23, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. TAP is for separating and retiring military members. It is a joint venture by the FFSC and the Departments of Defense, Labor, and Veterans Affairs. Topics include skill assessment, resume writing, job search methods, interview techniques, and a review of veterans’ benefits. Please see your Career Counselor to sign up. Seating is limited.

Naval Air Station Patuxent River • • The name Tester is a registered mark in the state of Maryland. This paper is published by Comprint, Inc., 9030 Comprint Ct., Gaithersburg, Md. 20877, (301) 948-1520, a private firm in no way connected with the U.S. Navy, under exclusive written contract with Naval District Washington. This commercial enterprise newspaper is an authorized publication for members of the military services. Contents of the Tester are not necessarily the official views of, nor endorsed by the U.S. Government, the Department of Defense, or the Department of the Navy. The appearance of advertising in this publication,

Capt. Ted Mills

Commanding Officer

Capt. Ben Shevchuk Executive Officer

Cmd. Master Chief William Lloyd-Owen

Command Master Chief

including inserts or supplements, does not constitute endorsement by the Department of Defense or Southern Maryland Newspapers and Printing of the products or services advertised. Everything advertised in this publication shall be made available for purchase, use, or patronage without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, marital status, physical handicap, political affiliation, or any other non-merit factor of the purchaser, user, or patron. If a violation or rejection of this equal opportunity policy by an advertiser is confirmed, the publisher shall refuse to print advertising from that source until the violation is corrected.

Connie Hempel

Public Affairs Officer

Donna Cipolloni Staff Writer

Breton Helsel and Deirdre Parry

Copy/layout editors

Editorial content is edited, prepared, and provided by the Public Affairs Office. News copy should be submitted by Friday to be considered for the following week’s edition. All material is edited for accuracy, brevity, clarity, and conformity to regulations. To inquire about news copy, call 301-342-4163 or fax the Tester at 301-8639296.

Commercial advertising may be placed with the publisher by calling 301-862-2111.

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Thursday, March 21, 2013


How to donate

For more information on kidney transplants, how to be screened and living donors, check out the following links: ƒUnited Network for Organ Sharing (UNOS) ƒWashington Hospital Center transplant center ƒNational Kidney Foundation, Maryland site

Donor reflects on decision, encourages others By Kristine Wilcox Naval Aviation Training Systems Program Office (PMA-205) Communications Support Helen Wernecke has no regrets about having one kidney. More than five years after donating one to an ailing church member, Naval Air Systems Command employee Wernecke said she has no doubts about her decision, and urges others to consider giving the gift of life. As the nation marks National Kidney Month in March, Wernecke, the General Training Department head for the Naval Aviation Training Systems Program Office (PMA-205), shared how her gift to friend Mi-

chael Pipkin transformed both their lives. Q: How has your life changed since donating a kidney more than five years ago? A: My circle of family and friends has grown larger. Michael’s family is now my family. My spiritual life has grown. I think back on the process, from beginning to end, and know God picked me up and carried me through the whole thing. I never had a doubt about the donation/transplantation. Physically, I’m about the same, though I remain focused on my health more so than before I had the surgery. I wear a medical alert bracelet, so I don’t receive medicines that would impact my remaining kidney. I’ll have an episode of unexplained fatigue every once in

For all MWR news, visit us online at mil/Patuxent, click on Fleet and Family Readiness. In response to the fiscal year 2013 Commander, Navy Installations Command guidance for operations under reduced funding, the following NAS Patuxent River MWR services have changed hours. Drill Hall: Weekdays, 5 a.m. to 8 p.m.; Saturdays, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Sundays, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Indoor Pool: Weekdays, 6 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 3-6 p.m.; Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; and Sundays, closed. Liberty Center: Tuesdays, 3-10 p.m.; Wednesdays, 2-10 p.m.; Thursdays, 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Fridays and Saturdays, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m.; and Sundays and Mondays, closed. The overall objective remains to identify prudent reductions that protect our support to our forces operating forward first, and preserve, to the best of our ability, the support to the Fleet, Fighter and Family.

Drill Hall

Register for a class and get more information at the Fitness and Sports Office or call 301-757-1194. Attention patrons Funding issues have affected many of the runs and walks. While these events will continue to be held, they will now be free to participate. No T-shirts, prizes, trophies or refreshments will be provided unless covered by sponsorship. Patrons who have already paid to participate in the event can obtain a full refund at the Fitness and Sports Office. Events affected include the 10-mile Relay on Friday, the Earth Day/SAPR 5K Run/Walk on April 18, the Triathlon on June 1, and the Team Triathlon on Sept. 7. 10-mile Relay Race Friday, 11:30 a.m.

a while. I’ll sit down for five minutes and then I’m back up again doing my thing. The episodes are fewer than they were immediately after the surgery.

Samaritan” out there that would do the same for my children that I was doing for Michael.

The medical doctors will not allow you to donate if it will compromise your health. I said, “Yes,” because it was right for me. When I look at Michael and how well he’s doing, I know that it was right to do. He’s watched his son graduate as a doctor and launched his daughter off to college. Michael is able to work full time again and not be tethered to a dialysis machine. He’s living a full life and that’s a gift.

Q: What would you tell others if they are considering kidney donation? A: Make the call. Obviously, all the medical testing and family history process will determine if you’re healthy or not to donate.

Q: How was your recovery time? A: The surgery was laparoscopic, so it was minimally invasive. My recovery was relatively easy and short. I had my surgery on Oct. 3 and was back at my desk on the 22nd. I came home from

U.S. Navy photo by Kristine Wilcox

Helen Wernecke, the General Training DeQ: What was your fam- partment head for the ily’s reaction when you told Naval Aviation Training them what you were doing? Systems and Ranges A: My husband and chil- Program Office (PMAdren were very supportive 205), discussed how from the moment I told donating her kidney them. We’d explained ev- changed her life.

erything to our two children and they understood the process and risks. They never had a worry for me or a doubt it wasn’t the right thing to do. A few, not many, of my immediate family and close friends were worried that I was taking too great a risk. They thought I should keep my kidney in case someone, like my children, would need it. My reply was that there would be a “good


Rain date: March 29 The Patuxent River Relay Race is a 10-mile course along the Patuxent River. Teams have two to five runners with each member running between 2-8 miles, depending on team size. Divisions are male, female and co-ed. This is now a free event for all with base access. Patrons who have already paid may get a full refund at the Fitness and Sports Office. Due to funding, trophies and T-shirts are not available. Participants must bring their own drinks and energy foods. Registration forms are at, click on Fleet and Family Readiness and then Fitness and Sports. NAS Pax River Earthday Celebration Run/Walk in support of SAPR April 18, 10 a.m. check in Starts at the Beach House The 5K run begins at 11 a.m. The 3K walk begins at 11:15 a.m. This is a free event for all station employees and their family members. Navy Environmental will be on hand with displays, booths and equipment. Registration forms must be dropped off at the Fitness and Sports Office. Call the Fitness and Sports Office at 301-757-1194 or 301-757-3943. The Navy’s Sexual Assault Prevention and Response Program (SAPR) is designed to meet the needs of victims of sexual assault. One important aspect of the program is the Victim Advocates. NAS Patuxent River has more than 110 specially trained volunteer advocates who support victims by: Responding immediately to victims 24/7, explain reporting options, accompanying victims through medical, investigative and legal procedures, and by providing information and referrals. A SAPR advocate can be reached 24/7 at 301-481-1057. The SAPR program ensures that all victims of sexual violence are treated with respect, dignity and sensitivity. For information on SAPR, call the Fleet and Family Support Center at 301-757-1867. NAS Patuxent River Environmental Division Celebrates Earth Day April 18, 9 a.m. to noon Beach House In addition to an MWR-sponsored 5K race, the installation Environmental Division is hosting numerous booths and displays. Learn about Pax wildlife, invasive species, rain gardens, alternative energy and more! In addition, take advantage of a battery—lithium, alkaline, cell phone—and compact fluorescent light bulb turn-in. For more information about the Environmental offerings, call the Conservation Branch at 301-324-3670.

the hospital two days after the surgery and was on Extra Strength Tylenol. No narcotics. The first two days were painful with the gasses used for laparoscopy surgery, but that was it. Once that phase passed, I felt fatigued as my body adjusted to one kidney. Q: How often do you see the recipient? A: I see Michael weekly at church. We go to the same service on Sunday mornings and we use the coffee hour between the services to catch up on what’s happening in our lives. We also attend a Bible study class at a friend’s house twice a month on Monday nights. We text each other when something reminds us of each other. Life is good!

Customized Creations

Open Monday through Thursday from 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. For more information on classes or to register, stop by Customized Creations in building 652 or call 301-342-6293 Vendor Spaces still available Second Annual Arts and Crafts Spring Fling April 20 Spaces are still available for the Second Annual Spring Fling for vendors wishing to sell products. Active-duty and retired military, DOD Civilians, contractors and sponsored guests may register. Home businesses are welcome as long as products are sold as a craft or gift package. Craft spaces are $60 and tables and chairs are also available for rent.

River’s Edge Catering and Conference Center

To make a reservation or for more information, stop by River’s Edge or call 301-342-3656. Easter Brunch Register by Wednesday March 31, seatings at 11:30 a.m., noon, 2 p.m. and 2:30 p.m. Join us for Easter Brunch. This annual event fills up fast so make your reservations today. Cost is $21.95, adults; $10.95, youths ages 6-16; $3, children ages 3-5; and free for children ages 2 and younger

Comics on Duty Tickets go on sale Monday April 18, buffet at 5 p.m.; show at 6:30 p.m. Comics on Duty is returning for another show. Join us for an evening of laughs and good times. You are in for a treat with each of these four comics. Advance tickets are $15, or $20 at the door. Price includes extensive appetizer buffet. Tickets sold at the River’s Edge, the ITT Office and by phone.

NRC Solomons

For more information on recreational events at NRC Solomons, contact Jennifer Marchant at or 410-286-8365. Hop into Spring Book a three or more night stay at NRC Solomons between Monday and April 8 and receive one night free; excludes Waterfront Cottages. All guests receive a voucher for a free round of mini golf at NRC. NRC lodging guests for the month or March are also entered to win a dinner-for-two at Stoney’s King Fishers Restaurant. For more information, call 410-286-7301.



Thursday, March 21 6:30 p.m., Warm Bodies A funny twist on a classic love story, this is a tale about the power of human connection. After a zombie epidemic, R, a highly unusual zombie, encounters Julie, a human survivor, and rescues her from a zombie attack. Julie sees that R is different from the other zombies, and as the two form a special relationship in their struggle for survival, R becomes increasingly more human; setting off an exciting, romantic and often comical chain of events that begins to transform the other zombies and maybe even the whole lifeless world. Rated: PG-13 (1 hr, 37 min) Friday, March 22 6:30 p.m., Beautiful Creatures A supernatural love story set in the South which tells the tale of two star-crossed lovers: Ethan, a young man longing to escape his small town, and Lena, a mysterious new girl. Together, they

uncover dark secrets about their respective families, their history and their town. The film is based on the first novel in the best-selling series by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. Rated: PG13 (2 hr, 4 min) 9:30 p.m., Identity Thief Unlimited funds have allowed Diana to live it up on the outskirts of Miami, where the queen of retail buys whatever strikes her fancy. There’s only one glitch: The ID she’s using to

finance these sprees reads “Sandy Bigelow Patterson” and it belongs to an accounts rep who lives halfway across the U.S. With only one week to hunt down the con artist before his world implodes, the real Sandy Bigelow Patterson heads south to confront the woman with an all-access pass to his life. And as he attempts to bribe, coax and wrangle her 2,000 miles to Denver, one easy target will discover just how tough it is to get your name back. Rated: R (1 hr, 51 min)

Saturday, March 23 4 p.m., Beautiful Creatures 6:30 p.m., Identity Thief 9 p.m., Side Effects Once a successful New York couple, Emily and her husband are now struggling to readjust to life after his recent release from prison. Emily is plagued with a clinical depression and, following a car crash, is referred to respected psychiatrist Dr. Jonathan Banks who offers the latest in prescription drugs to try and alleviate her anxiety. However as Emily’s

Thursday, March 21, 2013

relationship with both Banks and her prescribed medication intensifies, she finds herself descending into a chemical-fuelled nightmare where the lines between fantasy and reality become dangerously blurred. This is a riveting psychological thriller where neither the symptoms nor the cure are quite as straightforward as they seem. Rated: R (1 hr, 46 min) Free Sneak Preview There is a $1 charge for 3D glasses.

Sunday, March 24 2 p.m., G.I. Joe: Retaliation (3D) Admittance begins at 1 p.m. First come, first served. This moving will be shown in its entirety. No camera phones, camcorders or any other recording device permitted in the theater. Monday and Tuesday No Movies Wednesday, March 27 6:30 p.m., Side Effects

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Thursday, March 21, 2013


Prescribed burns provide airfield clear zone By Donna Cipolloni Tester staff writer

U.S. Navy photo by Donna Cipolloni

Under the direction of NAVFAC Conservation and Planning Branch at NAS Pax River, certified wildland firefighters light a prescribed burn in the airfield clear zone near the approach to Runway 06, March 15. A drip torch, a can of liquid fuel with a long spout burning lightly at the end, was used to start and spread the carefully controlled fire by dripping a 3-1 oil and gas mixture on the grass at a steady rate. The fire was started slowly, one small area at a time, and the crew vigilantly monitored its progress by running the fireline—a prepared area at the perimeter of the burn site meant to contain the fire—on all-terrain vehicles that held water tanks and hand tools like swatters and fire rakes.

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“If anything looks like it’s beginning to creep beyond the fireline,” Swift said, “they’ll squirt it and pat it down to put it out. “ The fire lasted a total of three hours before burning itself out, as planned.


Twenty-two acres of warm season grasses near the approach to Runway 06, in an area known as the clear zone, were intentionally set ablaze March 15 under the direction of Naval Facilities Engineering Command Conservation and Planning Branch at NAS Patuxent River. The effort, known as a prescribed burn, is the controlled application of fire to accomplish a specific land management goal. “An airfield’s clear zone should not have trees or vegetation above a certain height,” said Jim Swift, natural resources manager. “This area is planted with warm season grasses as an alternative to forest cover and the best way to maintain that grass is through periodic burning.” Swift explained how the grass will grow long throughout the growing season and then die off and lay over in winter. When the weather warms up again, new grass will rise from the old dried clump and the process begins anew. Over several years, however, a layer of thatch builds up and begins to choke out and kill the new grass. “Burning it off periodically allows the grass to continue coming back and also prevents any woody vegetation - trees and shrubs - from growing,” Swift said. “That maintains the clear zone the air operations people require.” In addition to recycling soil nutrients and providing a habitat for wildlife like rabbits and ground-dwelling birds such as quail, prescribed burns cost less money than mowing. “It’s actually cheaper to burn every three years than to mow the area annually or put it on a regular mowing schedule,” Swift said. “Today we’re burning 22 acres, next year we’ll burn another 25 acres, the year after that another 22 acres—for a total of 69 acres—that are burned on a rotational basis.” Prior to the burn, the site was prepared and Sustainable Solutions, the company subcontracted to do the work, provided a detailed fire management plan which covered the burn objectives, necessary weather and fuel conditions, fire techniques, smoke management and other pertinent safety information. A six-member crew, all certified wildland firefighters, conducted the burn. The team-leading Burn Boss made the final decision, on site, to commence the burn after taking into consideration the steady 20 mph blowing winds, among other conditions. “The ground can’t be too wet or too dry,” Swift said. “A couple days of dry weather following a rain is required. That provides enough drying time so the fuels can catch, but there’s still enough moisture in the grass and on the ground so that the fire won’t burn so fast or hot that it’s uncontrollable.”






Thursday, March 21, 2013

Commands present end of tour awards

U.S. Navy photo by Naval Aircrewman Mechanical 2nd Class (NAC) Joseph Kimmey

Gunther gets Commendation Medal

U.S. Navy photo by Naval Aircrewman Mechanical 2nd Class (NAC) Joseph Kimmey

Retired Chief Naval Aircrewman Mechanical Douglas Gunther, right, receives an end of tour Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal from Cmdr. Jason Rider, Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 20 commanding officer. Gunther was the P-8A Department leading chief petty officer from August 2010 to January 2013.

Five from VX 20 earn Achievement Medals

From left, Naval Aircrewman Mechanical 1st Class Norman Tejeda, Naval Aircrewman Avionics 1st Class Joshua Hawkins, Chief Aviation Electrician’s Mate Angela Johns, Aviation Structural Mechanic 1st Class Clinton Zimmerman and Naval Aircrewman Avionics 1st Class Jerry Taylor received an end of tour Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals on March 4 during a ceremony in the Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 20 Hangar.


Russell gets Commendation Medal

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U.S. Navy photo by Naval Aircrewman Mechanical 2nd Class (NAC) Joseph Kimmey

Retired Chief Aviation Electronics Technician Sean Russell, right, receives an end of tour Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal from Cmdr. Jason Rider, Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 20 commanding officer. Russell was the quality assurance leading chief petty officer from January 2010 to November 2012.

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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Courtesy photo

Lincoln military housing residents in communities on and off the installation can expect to see a bill similar to this one with the launch of the threemonth mock billing cycle in April.


Continued from 1 planning stages. Residents will be notified of the dates

and times through email or written communication if a valid email address is not on file with Lincoln or the housing office. The Tester will also publish town hall dates and times.

Scoreboard As of March 15 Intramural Bowling League WSI Big 10 Goat Locker Hang ‘em High Rollin’ Thunder JMWS Wafwots High-n-Low Lucky Strikes Spare Time

60-24 56.5-27.5 49.5-34.5 44-40 43.5-40.5 43-41 38.5-45.5 31.5-52.5 27.57 26.5-57.5

VX-1 Mag-49 A/O

5-7 5-7 2-10

Final Standings: Intramural Volleyball Monday/Wednesday Division Grateful Digs


Officials attending the meeting will be from Naval District Washington, NAS command, the Pax housing office and Lincoln Military Housing.

Shaw Road Redemption 28-11 Notorious D.I.G. 18-21 Need for Speed 2-37 Tuesday/Thursday Division Set to Kill 27-9 Servin’ It Up 25-11 Brew Crew 20-16 Great Balls of Fire 15-21 A/O 6-30

Final Standings: Intramural Graybeard Basketball

9-0 8-1 6-3 6-3 6-3 3-6 3-6 2-7 2-7 0-9

Final Standings: Intramural Basketball

Monday/Wednesday Division Grind Time 11-0 VQ-4 8-3 P&P Rangers 6-6 Tigers 6-6 Osprey 3-8 VX-23/TC-7 0-11 Tuesday/Thursday Division Ballsohard U 10-2 Bomb Squad 7-5 Top Notch 7-5

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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Around Town St. Mary’s County events Newtown Players: The Lion in Winter

something amazing with recycled materials. They only need to bring their imagination. Free event.

Thursday through Saturday, 8 p.m. Sunday, 3:30 p.m. Three Notch Theater, Lexington Park Riveting drama based on medieval King Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine. Tickets are $15 for adults, and $12 for students, adults ages 65 and older, and military members. Reservations recommended and can be made by calling 301-737-5447 or at www.


K-9 Demonstrations

Today, 10:30-11 a.m. Calvert Marine Museum One Osprey in a nest, two fish swims nearby, three scurrying crabs . come play the counting game and learn some of Tom Wisner’s songs from Singing the Chesapeake. Free event. Registration recommended and can be made by calling 410-326-2042, ext. 41

Saturday, 10 a.m. Lexington Park library Free demonstrations by two blood hounds, 5-year-old, Edgar, and 3-year-old, Millie, plus information on Search and Recovery. Program presented by Bay K-9 Search and Recovery Team.

Casino Night

Tuesday, 1-4 p.m. Charlotte Hal library Youths ages 4-12 can drop in and complete a spring craft. Supplies are provided. Free event.

Calvert County events Sea Squirts: Chesapeake 1,2,3

Yes, You CAN Use a Computer!

Saturday, 4 p.m.-1 a.m. Brass Rail Sports Bar, Great Mills Free food and fun. Proceeds benefit the Thoroughbred Placement Rescue. Must be age 21 or older. Call 301-994-9855 for more information.

Today, 2-3 p.m. Calvert library, Fairview Learn how to set up a Facebook account so you can locate and keep in touch with friends and family. The training lasts one hour and takes place in a small group. Register by calling 410-257-2101.

Build It

Kids Just Want to Have Fun

Monday, 2:30-3:30 p.m., Leonardtown library Wednesday, 2-3 p.m., Charlotte Hall library Children of all ages can drop in and build

Today, 6:30-7:30 p.m. Calvert library, Twin Beaches Reading, discussion and projects for students in kindergarten to third grade. This month’s theme is Pop Art. Must register by

calling 410-257-2411.

Buy Local: The Sustainable Food Movement

Today, 7 p.m. Calvert Marine Museum PEM Talks: Sustainable Chesapeake presents Greg Bowen in the auditorium. Locally sourced food producers are on hand with information on how to buy local. Free event.

What Are My Old Books Worth? Valuing Your Books

Calvert library, Fairview Today, 7-9 p.m. Have a box of old books in the corner and don’t know what to do with them? Join Calvert Library and Second Looks Books for a workshop that teaches you how to value your old or rare books. Participants are encouraged to bring a few old books to the workshop.

Household Hazardous Waste Collection Day

Saturday, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Hope Community Center, Sunderland During the collection day, a licensed contractor will collect household hazardous waste for proper disposal. Collection is limited to Calvert County residents only and proof of residency is required. Waste from commercial businesses is prohibited.

A Taste of Solomons

Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Restaurants throughout Solomons Taste of Solomons is a one-day food festival showcasing the many wonderful places to eat in this lovely waterfront community. Food and drink tickets are $4 each and are available at participating restaurants. As an added feature this year, most restaurants will participate in a gift certificate prize program. Some of the tickets at each location will be designated as prize winners and the lucky purchaser will be awarded a gift certificate for future use at the respective restaurant. For more information, call 410-3269900 or visit

Easter Festival

Saturday, noon to 1:30 p.m. Kellams Field, Chespaeake Beach See the Easter bunny, play free games for prizes, ride the train, slide down the giant slide and jump in the moon bounce. Treats are provided by local businesses. For more


information, call 410-257-2230 or visit www.

Monday Morning Movies and More

Monday, 10-11 a.m. Calvert library, Prince Frederick Bring the little ones for movies and a story.

Amazing Amphibians

Monday, 11 a.m., 1 and 2 p.m. Calvert Marine Museum Discover some of the amphibians living in the area. Learn about their life cycle and how they differ from reptiles. Discover what we feed them and what makes them so amazing. A 15-minute program starts on the hour.

Hands on History

Tuesday, 11 a.m., 1 and 2 p.m. Calvert Marine Museum Delve deeper into our Maritime History Hall. Discover some of the hidden treasures we have in our collection when we open up our discovery boxes and see what those artifacts can teach us about the people, or things, that were here long before we were. A 15-minute program starts on the hour.

Tween Event: Game Night

Tuesday, 6:30-8 p.m. Calvert library, Prince Frederick Can you complete the challenge in one minute? Come beat your friends at a variety of games including: Face the Cookie, A Bit Dicey and Chocolate Unicorn, as seen on TV in the game show Minute to Win It. Register by calling 410-535-0291 or 301-855-1862.

Invasive Species

Wednesday, 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. Calvert Marine Museum Explore how fragile the bay ecosystem can be when nonnative animals or plants are introduced and begin to take over. This program stars “frankenfish” the Snakehead, and some other perhaps more surprising culprits. A 15-minute program starts on the hour.

Easter Sunrise Service

March 31, 6:30 a.m. Calvert Marine Museum docks Rain or shine. Dress warm and casual. Breakfast and Easter egg hunt following the service. For more information, call 410-2312075 or visit

Thursday, March 21, 2013







Thursday, March 21, 2013



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