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Serving the Hampton Roads Navy Family

Vol. 20, No. 6 Norfolk, VA | | 02.09.12

Whidbey Island, 22nd MEU returns from lengthy deployment By MC1 (SW) Rachael L. Leslie USS Whidbey Island Public Affairs


Sailors and Marines from the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) aboard amphibious dock landing ship USS Whidbey Island (LSD 41) returned to the United States following a 10 and a half month deployment when the ship pulled into Morehead City, N.C., Feb. 4. After offloading the embarked 22nd MEU Marines, Whidbey Island returned to its homeport at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Ft. Story in Virginia Beach on Feb. 7. Whidbey Island deployed March 23, 2011, as part of the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group (ARG), which spent the past 10 months supporting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts in the U.S. 5th and 6th Fleet area of responsibility. “It was a tremendous accomplishment,” said Whidbey Island Commanding Officer Cmdr. Eric L. Conzen. “I thought the holidays would be the toughest, but we really came together as a ‘naval family’ away from our true families to make it through, enjoying ourselves while we were at it. In the end, we have a great sense of accomplishment – we did what no one else has done in a long, long time.” Whidbey Island Command Master Chief (SW/AW) Kevin Goodrich said the deployment itself is one of the crew’s greatest achievements. “Two years ago this ship was cold, dark and uninhabitable,” said Goodrich. “We brought her through a year-long extended planned maintenance availability, where more than 40 percent of the crew were replaced, brought her through the basic and advanced phases, certified for an independent humanitarian deployment and then, at the last minute, shifted focus to an integrated ARG/MEU deployment. We have met every mission during these past 10 and a half months, and our crew is at the pinnacle of their profession.” Whidbey Island visited 11 ports in eight countries throughout the 5th and 6th Fleet areas of responsibilities. “The opportunity that we were afforded to visit so many different and diverse countries was definitely a once-in-a-lifetime chance for the majority of Marines and Sailors on the ship. Having the chance to visit these places was a real treat,” said Marine Sgt. Deric Graham, 22nd MEU. “For me personally, the visit to Cannes, France was the most enjoyable. I got to see the place where the international film festival is held, experience the Mediterranean/French culture, attend a few tours to Saint Tropez and dance and have a good time at an outdoor techno concert.” The Navy-Marine Corps team aboard Whidbey Island participated


■ achievement One of the biggest achievements for the crew occurred in December when they promoted 36 percent of the crew to the next pay grade.

MC3 (SW/AW) Desiree D. Green

Two years ago this ship was cold, dark and uninhabitable.” - Whidbey Island Command Master Chief (SW/AW) Kevin Goodrich

Aviation Ordnanceman 1st Class Michael Turley, assigned to weapons department aboard the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), installs an air conditioning unit at Toras Chaim Elementary School during a community service project. One thousand Sailors volunteered at more than 60 sites as part of Harry S. Truman’s Community Service Day.

MC2 Leona Mynes



Approximately 1,000 Sailors assigned to USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) participated in Truman’s first Community Service Day, Feb. 1. The one-day project provided about 4,500 community service hours to the Norfolk Botanical Garden, Hope Charitable Services, Mojo Thrift Shop, Keep Norfolk Beautiful, Norfolk city libraries, Nauticus, Samaritan House, Toras Chaim Elementary School, Portsmouth Parks and Recreation facilities and the Norfolk Animal Care Center. “Today gave us a chance to leverage our organization and manpower to help out groups in the Hampton Roads area,” said Cmdr. William Bulis, Truman’s air boss, who volunteered at the Samaritan House in Virginia Beach. “Teamwork is a huge part of this job. A lot of planning went

into making this day happen.” Bulis worked with more than 150 Sailors at Samaritan House and surrounding Virginia Beach locations. Truman participates in community service projects regularly. However, the crew set a goal to give 25,000 community service hours this year. The ship plans to hold a Community Service Day once a month to help achieve its goal. “We are proud to be here helping the Hampton Roads community,” said Operations Specialist 1st Class (SW/AW) Nakisha Joseph, assigned to Truman’s operations department, who helped replace mulch at the Norfolk Botanical Garden. “The Community Service Day is really all about teamwork, which is what we are all about on Truman.” Truman Sailors enjoyed the opportunity to give back to the community, said Information Systems Technician 3rd Class Tataiana Garner, assigned to

Truman’s combat systems department, who helped with interior painting at Toras Chaim Elementary School. “It’s really great for us and it increases morale,” said Garner. “The (community service projects) allow us to work off the ship and in a different environment.” “It’s just a great feeling to know that the Navy is part of our community, and not only is this an organization that protects us and keeps us safe, but it’s also an organization that is dedicated to preserving the community and making the communities they work in better,” said Mordechai Loiterman, principal of Toras Chaim Elementary School in Portsmouth. More than 100 Sailors painted walls, cleaned the soccer field and spoke with children at the elementary school. “I feel a tremendous debt of gratitude to Truman Sailors,” said Loiterman.

LEGOs MAKE MARK IN SHIPBUILDING HISTORY Hundreds of LEGO ships, ranging in length from a few inches to several feet, rested at anchor in the Hampton Roads Naval Museum (HRNM), Feb. 4. “Brick by Brick: LEGO Shipbuilding” drew more than 70 budding engineers.

ADAPTIVE SLED HOCKEY Wounded Warriors took to the ice at Rockville Ice Arena to play a competitive game of adaptive sled hockey for the first time, Jan. 27.

THE MYSTERY OF VALENTINE’S DAY Beyond the candied hearts, big cards and romantic meals, there is a spark of mysterious original intent surrounding the special day.

» see A6

» see B3

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U.S. Marines assigned to the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) walk off the ramp of amphibious dock landing ship USS Whidbey Island (LSD 41) after completing a 10.5 month deployment in both the 5th and 6th fleet areas of responsibility.

Navy training, fundamentals help save lives in fiery car crash By David Todd The Flagship Managing Editor


Timing, training and a bit of luck all played part for a Naval Reserve Officers Training Corps (NROTC) midshipman and an officer candidate from Old Dominion University (ODU) who helped rescue a woman and her 2-year-old child from a burning car, Feb. 1. Midshipman 1st Class Jason C. Benning, 22, from Virginia Beach, and Officer Candidate Joshua S. Moore, 26, from Bluffs, Ill. were traveling home from an evening class at ODU when they noticed a single vehicle accident at approximately 8:47 p.m. on Interstate 264 East, near Military Hwy. in Norfolk on the inside set of lanes. “We saw a vehicle on the right side – it just looked like a disabled vehicle

» see RESCUE | A7

David Todd Midshipman 1st Class Jason C. Benning (left) and Officer Candidate Joshua S. Moore assisted in the rescue of a woman and her child.

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Left: Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Equipment) 1st Class Anthony Rickey (left) and Aviation Boatswain’s Mate (Equipment) 1st Class Jonathan Dicola celebrate as they watch Super Bowl XLVI in the hangar bay of the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush (CVN 77). George H.W. Bush is in the Atlantic Ocean conducting carrier qualifications.

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SPIRIT OF HOPE NOMINATIONS SOUGHT Press release Chief of Naval Personnel Public Affairs


Submissions for the 2011 Spirit of Hope award are being sought and must be submitted by March 16 to Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (Manpower, Personnel, Training and Education) through OPNAV N135D. The award recognizes an individual or organization that epitomizes the values of Bob Hope: duty, honor, courage, loyalty, commitment, integrity and selfless dedication. Since 2005, the Navy has nominated one outstanding individual or support organization to receive the distinguished Spirit of Hope Award. Nomination criteria and instructions were announced in

NAVADMIN 046/12. “The individual or organization being nominated should reflect Mr. Hope’s service to the spiritual, social, welfare, education and entertainment needs of our Sailors,” said Millie King, Chief of Naval Personnel, Personal Readiness and Community Support Branch program analyst, who is coordinating the Navy’s nomination process. “Nominations should describe extraordinary achievements and contributions above and beyond normal duties during 2011.” Originally commissioned by the USO, the Spirit of Hope Award was inspired by Hope’s dedication to the men and women of the United States Armed Forces for five decades. Since 1997, this award has been formally presented by the Wiegand Foundation, Inc., during an

annual ceremony held in Washington, D.C. The Spirit of Hope Award is open to active duty, reserve, veteran and civilian Navy employees or an organization. Members of the civilian community or non-governmental organizations voluntarily supporting Sailors and embodying the Navy’s core values are also eligible. For detailed information, read NAVADMIN 046/12 or visit www.public. READINESS/Pages/SpiritofHopeAward.aspx. For more information, visit www.,, or For more news from Chief of Naval Personnel, visit cnp/.

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The Flagship® is produced by CNRMA staff.The editorial content is prepared, edited and provided by the CNRMA Public Affairs Office. The Flagship® is an authorized publication for members of the military services and their families.The Flagship® is published by Flagship, Inc., a subsidiary of The Virginian-Pilot Media Companies, a private firm that is in no way connected with the Department of Defense (DoD), the U.S. Navy or the U.S. Marine Corps, under exclusive contract with the U.S. Navy. The contents, including advertising, of theThe Flagship® do not necessarily reflect the official views of the DoD, the U.S. Navy, the U.S. Marine Corps, CNRMA or Flagship, Inc. and do not imply endorsement thereof. Items advertised inThe Flagship® shall be made available for purchase, use or patronage without regard to race, color, religion, gender, 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 advertising from that source until the violation is resolved. Stories may be submitted via email to Flagship® is published everyThursday by Flagship, Inc., whose offices are located at 150 W. Brambleton Ave., Norfolk, Va. 23510. Minimum weekly circulation is 40,000. © 2011 Flagship, Inc. All rights reserved.

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TRIDENT WARRIOR 2012 EXPERIMENTS WITH UNMANNED SURFACE VESSELS Test crafts equipped with hailers, lasers, warning munitions

We hope we can use these lessons learned, not only for experimental robotics, but for Army aviation and apply these lessons learned

By MC3 Betsy Knapper Navy Public Affairs Support Element East


Trident Warrior 2012 (TW12) kicked off at Fort Eustis, Jan. 30, as part of U.S. Fleet Forces Command’s new fleet experimentation program, where participants experiment with advanced maritime initiatives in an operational environment to improve capabilities available to the fleet. U.S. Navy unmanned surface vessels (USV), maintained by Naval Surface Warfare Center Combatant Craft Division (NSWC CCD), were set up with cameras, computer systems and non-lethal weapons during TW12 Spiral 1 experiment. For this part of TW12, two test crafts were equipped with directional acoustic hailers, eye dazzling lasers and flash-bang warning munitions. “The biggest piece with this part of Trident Warrior is the addition of non-lethal weapons – the hailer, laser dazzler and the flash-bangs,”

throughout the board.” - Carl Conti, Program Manager, Spatial Integrated Systems, Inc.

Photos by MC3 Betsy Knapper A technician, supporting Naval Surface Warfare Center Combatant Craft Division (NSWC CCD), boards and troubleshoots a U.S. Navy remote-controlled five-meter rigid hull inflatable boat (RHIB), Sea Fox, during Trident Warrior 2012 Spiral 1 experiment.

said Carl Conti, U.S. Navy Capt. (ret.), Program Manager, Spatial Integrated Systems, Inc. “The other part is being able to control them autonomously and then from a station back at the command center.” During the experiment, a remotecontrolled five-meter rigid hull inflatable boat (RHIB), named Sea Fox, preformed as an aggressor boat intruding in protected waters during a maritime security mission. Sea Fox ignored a series of warnings and the USV responded by first projecting a pre-recorded warning message and then deploying Venom V-10 warning munitions off the bow to detour Sea

A U.S. Navy remote-controlled fivemeter rigid hull inflatable boat, Sea Fox, intrudes in an area patrolled by a Navy unmanned surface vessel equipped with a series of non-lethal weapons during Trident Warrior 2012 Spiral 1 experiment.

Fox from continuing approach. “In a real world situation with an approaching vessel, our rules of engagement are going to stop us from doing anything until we know what the intent is,” said Conti. “So now, if we yell at him to get out of the way, we put a dazzler on his eyes and shoot flash-bangs to get him out of the way and he keeps coming, we now know his intent and are able to protect ourselves much further out than we would be able to protect ourselves normally.” One of the goals with TW12 is to get involved with unmanned systems of all sorts, air, land, sea and underwater and to have these systems work in real world type of exercises. “This is as main stream as it gets,” said Mike French, Aerospace Engineer with Aviation Applied Technology Division, Fort Eustis. “We hope we can use these lessons learned, not only for experimental robotics, but for Army aviation and apply these lessons learned throughout the board.” The experiment concluded on Feb. 3. Over the next following months, analysts will process the data collected from the experiment and continue to improve the Navy’s capabilities.



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Exhibit offers insight into African American WWII Sailors USS Mason featured at Newport News Museum

What we try to do is fill in the gaps that the history books don’t provide”

By David Todd The Flagship Managing Editor


During Black History Month, the New Journal and Guide and the Newsome House Museum and Cultural Center in Newport News are presenting a special exhibit dedicated the Navy men who served on the USS Mason (DE 529), called “Black Pride At Sea: The Men of the USS Mason.” The exhibit pays special attention to the role of the Black Press and the untold heroism of the men who served on the ship during World War II. The Mason, a 1,140ton Evarts-class destroyer escort, was constructed at the Boston Navy Yard in Massachusetts and was commissioned on March 20, 1944. Although there were numerous other escort ships like the Mason, it was the nation’s first ship manned by a predominantly black enlisted crew – 160 enlisted. The additional crew included six officers, who were white. Named in honor of Ens. Newton Henry Mason, a pilot with Fighting Squadron Three who was killed in action during the Battle of Coral Sea in May of 1942, the ship was employed on convoy escort duties in the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea through the remainder of World War II. In the early post-war months, she served as a training and experimental ship. Some at the time called the ship “Eleanor’s Folly,” referring to First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt’s efforts to desegregate the military and her campaign for equal opportunity in the military. The ship was not expected to succeed. “I really got interested in the project about five or six years ago when the Nauticus had a showing of the movie ‘Proud’ during Black History Month,” said Brenda H. Andrews, Publisher, New Journal and Guide. “One of the Mason men, Lorenzo DuFau (Signalman 2nd Class), was there as one of the special guests. To be perfectly honest, that was the first time I had heard of the

- Donna Davis, Historic Site Curator The crew of the USS Mason (DE 529) consisted of 160 enlisted and six officers, of which the enlisted crew was predominantly black.

New Journal and Guide archive photo

■ the museum The Newsome House Museum and Cultural Center is located at 2803 Oak Ave. in Newport News. It is open to the public Thurs. - Sat. from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Mon. - Wed. by appointment only).

Donna Davis, Historic Site Curator, The Newsome House Museum and Cultural Center; Brenda H. Andrews, Publisher, New Journal and Guide; and Command Master Chief Raymond D. Kemp, USS Mason (DDG 87) at the opening of the USS Mason exhibit in Newport News.

The exhibit is free, with suggested adult donation of $2. For more information, call 246-2360, or visit www. Courtesy of New Journal & Guide | Randy Singleton

USS Mason.” After viewing the movie and talking at length with DuFau, the Mason began to spark a personal interest for Andrews. “My main interest, at that time and now continuing, was the role of the Black Press – and particularly the Journal and Guide staff that actually told that story,” she said. “In the book ‘Proudly We Served,’ written by Mary Pat Kelly, she read an article that Thomas W. Young, from the Journal and Guide, had written on how they (the Mason crew) were treated in Ireland.” According to the book, Kelly talks about the Northern Ireland port of call, as having a profound effect

on the crew. Young even devoted a whole article on the experience, titled, “Irish First to Treat Mason Crew as Americans.” Young was commissioned by the Navy as a war correspondent aboard the Mason. While embedded, his job was to report on this history-making venture, but ultimately it was his articles and photos that kept the ship, and the crew’s, stories alive through the years. “In today’s era, to think of people doing the kinds of jobs they were doing is pretty routine,” said Andrews. “But, travel back 60 years, and these were the first men of color who were given an opportunity to do things that people do

on ships – engineering, gunnery, navigation.” Mason’s crew is most notably remembered for their courageous actions in the North Atlantic during Convoy NY-119, where the crew and the ship were put to the test. During the worst North Atlantic storm of the century, the Mason performed an astounding feat when the strength of the storm forced the convoy of sea-going tugs, harbor tugs, yard tankers and barges – headed to England – to break up. The Mason was chosen to escort a section of ships to their destinations. As winds increased, the Mason was pushed to its structural limit, and the deck split. Two beams in one compartment collapsed and the seam holding the deck

together had broken, leaving the ship at risk of sinking. Despite the ordeal, the crew didn’t give up. Within two hours, the deck was repaired, a new antenna was in service and water had been pumped from the engine room. Mason stayed at sea three more days, assisting 12 additional ships in the convoy. Lt. Cmdr. William “Bill” Blackford, Mason’s captain, recommended his crew for individual commendation for their efforts in saving Convoy NY-119, but it wasn’t until 1994, as a result of efforts by Congressional Black Caucus Congressman Charles Rangel of New York, a national tribute by President William Jefferson Clinton was held to honor the pioneering work of the forgotten African American heroes of the Mason, along

with other African American veterans of World War II. Andrews has vowed to continue her research to try to uncover more stories and photos about these historic men. The Newsome House Museum and Cultural Center is also doing their part to help tell the story. “What we try to do is fill in the gaps that the history books don’t provide,” said Donna Davis, Historic Site Curator, The Newsome House Museum and Cultural Center. “So, we talk about little known Black History facts. A lot of things that were prevalent in the community, but not very well publicized in these days.” While at the Newsome House Museum and Cultural Center, many are encouraged to stay and watch the motion picture, “Proud: Based on the true story of the men of the USS Mason.” The movie features Ossie Davis, playing the part of DuFau, and was his last big screen performance before his death in 2005. “The movie was provided by Brenda Andrews,” said Davis. “So when people come to see the exhibit of the USS Mason, they are also invited to sit and watch the movie,” said Davis. Next week we will continue by taking a deeper look into Mason’s crew and also see how the USS Mason (DDG 87) keeps DE-529’s legacy alive.






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The Flagship | | 02.09.12 | A5

Photos by Harry Gerwien | Military Newspapers of Virginia

Big fun. Bigger funds. Enormous impact. 3,557 plungers raise $1,112,000 for Special Olympics Virginia at 20th annual Polar Plunge Winter Festival VIRGINIA BEACH

How do you improve upon a $1 million event? You raise more. Special Olympics Virginia achieved another personal best when the 2012 Polar Plunge Winter Festival, Feb. 3 - 4 in Virginia Beach, topped off at a “cool” $1.12 million – the most ever raised in the event’s 20year history. Proceeds from the Plunge help provide year-round support to more than 10,000 Special Olympics athletes and 20,000 volunteers across Virginia. “Raising $1 million dollars for the second year in a row is incredible,” said Rick Jeffrey, Special Olympics Virginia president. “More importantly, though, these funds will help us to build bigger, better, more inclusive communities across the state of Virginia.” The 2012 Polar Plunge Winter Festival, presented by WTKR NewsChannel 3, The FOX 106.9, FM99, Wawa, GEICO, Virginia Natural Gas, Booz Allen Hamilton and the Virginia Law Enforcement Torch Run, kicked off at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, with the Polar Plunge commencing at 2:30 p.m. Special thanks to the many groups who helped take the Plunge to new heights, including: ■ 393 local students who raised $42,626 and took the icy dip into the Atlantic on Friday during the 2nd annual Polar Plunge Cool School Challenge. The top fundraising team, Plaza Middle School, not only took home some great incentives, but four students also will get to anchor the morning news on WTKR NewsChannel 3 in early March! ■ 1,025 people got cold feet for a great cause and raised $43,065 during the 2nd annual

Raising $1 million dollars for Coast Guard and rescue dive teams make sure that none of the plungers become injured from the cold water exposure.

the second year in a row is incredible.” - Rick Jeffrey, Special Olympics Virginia president

Polar Plunge 5K on Saturday morning. ■ 38 “Pee-Wees” age 10 and under plunged into a kiddie pool lightly sprinkled with ice on Saturday afternoon, which raised $6,627. ■ Special Olympics Virginia Board of Directors member Roger Giesinger of Chesapeake took home the individual fundraising prize for the seventh year in a row, with more than $21,000 raised. ■ More than 50 Special Olympics athletes and family members from the Fredericksburg area took home the “Top Team” fundraising award, with more than $60,000 raised. ■ Numerous local celebrities including Juliet Bickford from WTKR News Channel 3, Rock Girl Lindsey from FM99 and Virginia Beach Mayor Will Sessoms took the icy plunge for a great cause. Gold level Polar Plunge sponsors included Hardee’s, Free Agents Marketing and the Virginia Beach Convention and Visitor’s Bureau. Photos of the 2012 Polar Plunge will be posted on the Plunge Virginia Facebook page by Feb. 9. In the meantime, be sure to mark your calendar for the 21st annual Polar Plunge Winter Festival, set for Feb. 1 - 2, 2013. For more information on Special Olympics Virginia, visit

■ teams Members of Newport News “Cajun Krewe” (above) and the “Live Action Role Plungers” from Norfolk (right) took part in the 20th annual Polar Plunge Winter Festival. The event raised 1.12 million, the most ever raised in the event’s 20-year history, with proceeds to provide year-round support to more than 10,000 Special Olympics athletes and 20,000 volunteers across Virginia.


LEGO rightfully given place in shipbuilding history By MC1 Eric Brown PCU Arlington Public Affairs


The LEGO Group is known for their colorful interlocking bricks that have been an essential part of childhood since 1958, and have had a small but significant role in U.S. naval history. That’s not essentially true – the bricks have never actually played a part in our nation’s maritime history, but all that changed briefly, Feb. 4, when hundreds of blue, green, white, yellow, black, gray and red LEGO ships, ranging in length from a few inches to several feet, rested at anchor in the Hampton Roads Naval Museum (HRNM), moored among the more somber and traditional paintings, models and artifacts from centuries and decades past. Hosted by the museum, “Brick by Brick: LEGO Shipbuilding” drew more than 70 budding structural and mechanical engineers, who brought models that included aircraft carriers, submarines, tugboats and pirate ships. They were joined by more than 700 visitors, who spent the day learning and playing with the organization’s 18,000 bricks, purchased especially for this first-time event. “We’re always looking for ways to teach kids about naval history, and this kind of a program brings in more than just history – it also brings in science, technology, engineering and math, or STEM, which is really being pushed in schools today,” said Laura Orr, HRNM’s special events coordinator. “This teaches kids about the science of building a ship. It’s a lot of fun, too, because it combines science and technology elements with something kids love to do –

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MC1 Eric Brown Patricia Gardner watches her son Austin transport his cruise ship for display during Hampton Roads Naval Museum’s event, “Brick by Brick: LEGO Shipbuilding” on Feb. 4.

build and create.” The museum’s staff was assisted by about 15 volunteers, seven of them are assigned to Pre-commissioning Unit Arlington (LPD 24), who built LEGO ships with children of all ages. “I’ve been helping kids build replicas of (Civil Warera ironclad warship) USS Monitor, which I’ve done at least 15 times today,” said Boatswain’s Mate 3rd Class Benjamin Leshley. “I’d say I’m an expert at it by now and it’s been really neat to see kids getting into building them.” A one-time LEGO enthusiast, Leshley devoted his formative years to thousands of the small bricks, but no longer owns a single one. “That was a casualty of moving about 16 times when I was growing up,” he lamented. “However, I am slowly but surely convincing my wife that we absolutely need to have some LEGOs at home.” “I love LEGOs because you can build anything you want! You can literally sit down and build an entire city if you wanted to,” Leshley explained. His passion is shared by amateur shipbuilder Austin Gardner, 14, who brought a

four-story LEGO cruise ship to the museum. Very carefully. “If I took it off its base, it would definitely fall apart,” explained the high school freshman from Hampton. “It took a couple of weeks to build, and it was a challenge, because the platforms in the front and back kept falling apart.” Tens of thousands of LEGO bricks adorn his bedroom and living room, and his mother estimates well over $5,000 has been invested in his hobby. “LEGOs are the best thing I have found to build with,” said Gardner, who aspires to be an engineer or inventor someday. “You can do a lot of things with them.” HRNM, a part of the Naval History and Heritage Command, has been open since 1979. Upcoming events include speaking engagements, children’s activities and other educational activities. Admission is free. The museum is open Tues. - Sat., 10 a.m. 5 p.m., and Sun, from Noon - 5 p.m. It is located in Downtown Norfolk on the 2nd deck of Nauticus.



Car was engulfed in flames, smoke

Continued from front from a distance,” said Benning. “Once we got up close, we could see that it was completely crushed in the front and facing the opposite direction … there was a small flame in the engine compartment.” At the same time, both Benning and Moore pulled over to see if there was anyone in the vehicle and to offer assistance. There was already another individual (who preferred to remain unnamed) on the scene that stopped to help. “When we pulled over, I immediately got on the phone with dispatch and started talking to them about the location and what was going on,” Benning said, as Moore and the unnamed individual proceeded to try to gain access to the car’s passenger compartment. While on the phone, M. V. Spiegel, a Virginia State Police Motorist Unit, arrived on the scene and began putting out the flames in the engine compartment with a fire extinguisher. He also attempted to question the driver who was unresponsive and not making an effort to get out of the vehicle. “He (Spiegel) got it (the fire) down enough that I was able to get to the passenger door, break open the window (with a hammer), unlock it (the door) and open it,” said Moore. “At that time he (Spiegel) put the fire extinguisher down, and went around



100 Sailors earned ESWS qualifications Continued from front in three amphibious joint multinational exercises, as well as maritime security operations and theater security cooperation evolutions. “I am most proud that we

me because I was opening the door, and grabbed the lady out.” The car, which has been identified as a 2007 Ford Focus by the Virginia State Police, started to become engulfed with fire and filled with smoke, making it difficult to tell if anyone else was in the vehicle. When the driver was away from the vehicle, she told Spiegel that her child was still in the car. “Another gentleman, who had stopped (after) witnessing the crash in his rear-view mirror, went into the back seat, but was unable to unfasten the child, but did unlock the door,” said Moore. “That’s when Midshipman Benning was able to get in and unlatched the child seat and saved the toddler from the car.” Benning said that the Navy training he received during a three-week midshipmen cruise last summer gave him the ability to react without hesitation. “For those three weeks straight, all we did when we were out to sea, was damage control (DC) training,” said Benning. “We suited up, we went into a space without hesitation, and we did what we had to do.” “I give a lot of credit to the training that I got because I didn’t hesitate,” Benning continued. “We went straight in, we did what we had to do and made things happen.” Moore was an aviation electronics technician for more than four years

were part of a contingency force that was on alert in the Middle East and ready to respond to any mission asked of us,” said Marine 1st Sgt. Charles McDew, with the 22nd MEU. “That takes a lot of dedication and discipline to be mentally, morally, and physically ready at times where it may seem that not much is going on around you.” Conzen said one of the major benefits of such a long deployment is that the crew had a lot of time to earn professional qualifications and reach personal goals,

before applying to the Seaman to Admiral-21 program, which enables enlisted Sailors to attend college and become commissioned officers. His prior skills in fire training while in the Navy played a part in the rescue. “The fundamentals of the training set you up to know how to react in a dangerous situation,” he said, “… stay calm, focus on what needs to happen, and make sure that you get the job done to save lives.” Reaction and timing were key factors and personal safety concerns became a blur. “You are aware of the dangers, but you are also aware of the dangers to the other people,” Moore explained. “The thought of me being hurt … that was not going through my mind.” Benning’s father, Fleet Master Chief (SW/AW/SCM) Scott Benning, Navy Total Force/ Manpower, Personnel, Training and Education, was proud of the courage displayed during the recovery efforts and hopes that others will be inspired to help in a time of need. “My wife, Cheryl, and I are extremely proud of the courage that Jason and the others displayed during this event. We teach bystander intervention to our Sailors across the Navy. Their actions had a very positive impact on this family, and it reinforces the need for bystanders to act to enable positive

including more than 100 Sailors earning their enlisted surface warfare specialist (ESWS) qualification. “We were able to get almost every eligible officer Surface Warfare qualified, and a vast majority of the crew ESWS-qualified,” he said. “Even the most junior Sailors can proudly wear their ESWS pins as they walk off the brow at homecoming – something their peers ashore most likely will take much longer to earn.” Thanks to the Navy College Program for Afloat College Education (NCPACE),

Courtesy of Midshipman 1st Class Jason C. Benning The fire started in the engine compartment of the 2007 Ford Focus. Diligent recovery efforts aided in the rescue the driver and her 2-year-old child.

■ the crash The vehicle was a 2007 Ford Focus that was traveling on Interstate 264 East, near Military Highway in Norfolk on the inside set of lanes. The driver is believe to have lost control of the vehicle and struck the right jersey wall. Upon impact, the vehicle caught on fire and became fully engulfed. outcomes. Their actions and sharing their story may inspire others to act in a bystander situation,” he said. “People often speak about our youth and their lack of concern for others. Their actions, I believe, show us the strength of our youth and their desire to help others in a time of need. We are fortunate to have these young Americans joining our Navy to lead our Navy into

66 Sailors and Marines aboard completed college courses during the deployment, which included English, college algebra and math. “We did this and we accomplished every mission we were tasked with, including more than a few days working well past midnight,” said Conzen. “This crew never said ‘no more’ and doesn’t know the words ‘I can’t.’ They outperformed every team I have seen in more than 18 years in the Navy – hands down. They have every reason to be as proud of themselves

the future.” Jason and Moore don’t feel like heroes … they were just doing their duty. “I would do this for anyone, anytime,” said Moore. “I would hope that every American out there would do the same for me. I don’t feel like a hero, per se, I just feel like I was in the right place at the right time. I made the right decision to stop, and thankfully, everyone survived.” The driver and her 2-year-old child were taken to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital following the rescue efforts. An investigation is pending as to the cause of accident. Moore will graduate from ODU in May and will be relocating to Pensacola, Fla. for flight school for training to become a naval aviator. Jason will graduate in December and hopes to be selected for Surface Warfare. He has plans to relocate to the West Coast.

as I am of them.” Goodrich said one of the biggest achievements for the crew occurred in December when they promoted 36 percent of the crew to the next pay grade. The crew also conducted 41 underway replenishments during the deployment, which included connected replenishments and vertical replenishments. In addition to all of the professional goals the Sailors and Marines aboard Whidbey Island have to be proud of this past year, more than 31 of the men serving

aboard will return home to a new baby. When asked what the crew has to look forward to now that the deployment is over, Goodrich and Conzen agree that well-deserved time with family and friends is at the top of the list. “Of course, some time to reconnect to family, friends and the lifestyle of the United States,” said Goodrich. “We have essentially been in a bit of a time warp out here. Many things have changed back home and the crew is anxious about our return.”












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Getting the kids ready The Battleship Wisconsin was host to three retired flag officers who imparted important information affecting children in the United States today and called on law makers to take ownership of America’s future. » see B6



F L AG S H I P N E W S . C O M


0 2 . 0 9 . 12

WRNMMC uses new, brain-controlled prosthetic arm

The Modular Prosthetic Limb (MPL) was developed as part of a four-year program by the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory, along with Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences. The MPL was used by Wounded Warriors at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center for the first time, Jan. 24.

Sarah Fortney

By Sarah Fortney Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Public Affairs


A new prosthetic arm – operated by an individual’s thoughts – was used by Wounded Warriors at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) for the first time, Jan. 24. With nearly as much dexterity as a natural limb, 22 degrees of motion, and independent movement of fingers, the Modular Prosthetic Limb (MPL) was developed as part of a four-year program by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL), along with

■ new technology The brain-controlled prosthetic arm has nearly as much dexterity as a natural limb and allows independent movement of fingers.

WRNMMC and the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USU). On Jan. 24, a Wounded Warrior began using the nine-pound device, maneuvering its metallic fingers and wrist. “We’ve been working with (the APL) since the start of this project and we’re very excited about the opportunity (to have) our first individual

using this hand,” said Col. (Dr.) Paul Pasquina, Chief of Orthopaedics and Prosthetics at WRNMMC and director for the Center of Rehabilitation Sciences at USU. “We believe very strongly that those who are willing to put their lives in harm’s way deserve the very best. Through this revolutionizing project, we’ve worked with the greatest manufacturers across the globe to come up with modern solutions to loss of an upper limb.” Pasquina explained the limb is controlled by surface electrodes, which pick up electric signals generated by the muscles underneath the skin, then convert those patterns in electrical signals into a robotic function. “We wanted to make (the MPL)

as intuitive as possible. Normally, when you move your hand, you think about moving your hand, and a signal comes down from your brain, goes down through your spinal cord, out through your limb and activates muscles in your hand to open or close (the hand),” said Pasquina. With an amputee, the nerves traveling down the spinal cord are still intact and they’re still connected to some of the muscles in the arm, said Pasquina. “What we try to do is pick up the electrical signals of the muscles that still exist in the arm and interpret those, convert them to a computer signal to then drive a robotic limb,” he said. “When an individual is thinking about closing their hand,

muscles will activate and the prosthetic limb will respond accordingly.” Pasquina noted the potential future of this limb. Engineers seek to use electrodes underneath the skin for an electrical signal with much higher fidelity. Researchers also look to explore other mechanisms to rewire nerves. “There are folks working very hard on electrical sensors that can go directly on nerves and electrical sensors that can be embedded in the brain,” he said. “It’s very exciting to see that research and we’ve been privileged to partner with a lot of folks working on that. I think there’s still a lot to

» see ARM | B7



Army Sgt. 1st Class Tyrone C. Marshall, Jr. President Barack Obama talks about his new Veteran Job Corps initiative to replenish the nation’s first responders at Fire Station #5 in Arlington, Va., Feb. 3.

Obama announces program to hire vets as ‘first responders’ By Army Sgt. 1st Class Tyrone C. Marshall, Jr. American Forces Press Service


President Barack Obama continued his commitment to improving employment among veterans by introducing an initiative to hire them as the country’s first responders, Feb. 3. “In my State of the Union address, I proposed a new initiative called the Veterans Jobs Corps to put veterans back to work protecting and rebuilding America,” he said. “And today, we’re laying out the details of this proposal.”

Speaking at a fire station to veterans, firefighters, police officers and national park employees, Obama shared the venue’s significance before his remarks. “This is a fire station that holds some special significance for our country,” he explained. “On September 11th, the firefighters of this house were among the first to respond to the attack on the Pentagon. “You guys answered this nation’s call during its hour of need,” Obama added. “And in the years that followed, as

» see OBAMA | B7

Service members now will receive imminent danger pay only for days they actually spend in hazardous areas, Pentagon officials said, Feb. 2. The change was included in the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act, which President Barack Obama signed into law Dec. 31, 2011. “Members will see the prorated amount in their Feb. 15 pay records,” said Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. John Kirby. The act called for DoD to pay service members imminent danger pay only for the time they spend in areas that qualify for the pay. In the past, service members received $225 per month if they spent any time that month in an area where the pay was authorized. “This is a more targeted way of handling that pay,” said Kirby. Now, service members will receive $7.50 a day for days spent in these areas. Personnel who travel to the designated areas for periods less than 30 days should keep track of the number of days they are in the area to verify that they are paid for the correct number of days, officials said. The military services are working to waive or remit debts for members who may have been overpaid for January, officials said. The services can waive this “when there is no indication of fraud, fault, misrepresentation, or when members were unaware they were overpaid,” said Pentagon spokes-

U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. Andres J. Lugo Hospital Corpsman Henry Cates, assigned to 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regiment, Regimental Combat Team 5, checks an Afghan man’s pupils in Pahm Chareh Bazaar, where Afghanistan National Army Soldiers and U.S. Marines from 3rd Battalion, 6th Marine Regimental Combat Team 5 provided medical care during a medical initiative program.

■ the change Instead of receiving $225 per month for imminent danger pay, Soldiers will receive $7.50 per day. That’s approximately the same amount, but the new system “is a more targeted way of handling that pay,” said Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. John Kirby.

woman Eileen Lainez. Proration is based on a 30-day month, which translates into a rate of $7.50 per day. It does not matter if the month is 28 or 31 days long, officials explained ... if service members

serve in affected areas for the complete month, they will receive the full rate of $225 per month. The Defense Department defines imminent danger pay areas as places where members are subject to the threat of physical harm or imminent danger because of civil insurrection, civil war, terrorism or wartime conditions. Service members who come under fire, regardless of location, will receive the full monthly hostile-fire pay amount of $225. Service members will receive notification of the change via emails, on the MyPay system, on social media sites and via the chain of command.

HeroesatHome The Flagship | | 02.09.12 | B2

True romance is found in captured moments between life-changing ones By Tiffany Silverberg

■ a blend of fairytale and practicality The homecoming picture shows a fairytale romance, but it’s not all flowers and kisses being a pilot’s wife.

Military Spouse Contributor

Looking for a family favorite bread recipe recently, I opened a cookbook given to me by a group of junior high-aged girls that I mentored in the years before my marriage. I had been with these girls for the last few years, while I was in college and my “Prince Charming” was off at flight school on the other coast. The overwhelming majority of our relationship had been spent long-distance, falling in love over the phone, through long-inked letters and during our weekends somewhere in the middle of the country. Most of my junior high girls had never met him. They knew him only through pictures and stories from his “biggest fan.” We had all the challenges of a long-distance relationship, but our adoration for one another was obvious, simple, and maybe, even a bit innocent. The kind of love story I look forward to telling my grandchildren. The love story took a turn for the exciting when Prince Charming flew out for a whirlwind weekend proposal. My biweekly meetings with my gaggle of preteen girls were dotted with wedding plans – among the standard chats about boys, homework and future plans. To celebrate the excitement, my girls planned and hosted the sweetest bridal shower – a “Princess-themed” affair. During the party, they gave me my cookbook, full of their favorite recipes and notes of their wishes for my marriage. As I read through their bubbly messages last week, I smiled. “Hope you live happily ever after.” “Have a fairytale marriage with your Prince Charming.” I looked up at the homecoming picture that keeps us company, alongside our wedding picture. My photographer captured the classic kiss picture, with a propped up foot and a handful of flowers. I remember when I posted that picture on Facebook, it was flooded with comments about how it looked so classic and romantic. To be honest, from the view of my mantle, my life looks like that fairytale I wished for almost six years ago. But certainly, its not all flowers and kisses being married to a Navy pilot. It’s rolling out of bed before the sun rises to make sure he has the right balance of carbs, protein and coffee, because he once told me it was hard to concentrate on a flight when he wasn’t full before taking off. I just can’t leave that in the hands

You might not have those fantasy dates that end with roses, but instead, you get a brave husband who keeps flying, despite the tragedy around him.

of the Subway girl. It’s keeping dinners warm, but not dried out, hours after I thought we were going to eat because a brief ran late. It’s creating my own career, so we can be portable for his. It’s carving out time in the day to wash last-minute uniforms, to participate in squadron events, to whip up dinners for newly announced in-town guests. Of course, that’s just marriage, right? Nothing particularly unique about the practicalities of marriage. That’s just daily life. I remember thinking that when I saw the Bachelor show, a couple years ago, with a Wings of Love theme. The girls gushed about the exotic life they would live. “Ha!” I thought. “I’m married to America’s finest, hottest, sweetest pilot – and I have yet to be swept away in a plane to a faraway location.” But I watched the whole season ... what else did I have to do as my pilot trained for deployment in the desert, off the coast and around the country? Romance at its finest. And all that doesn’t even touch on biggest burden I carry – often replacing the glittery visions of the past with hazy, grey fears of the future. The long hours of the evening, when I know he’s flying, and any minute a knock on the door could knock me to my knees. It’s not every day, not even often, but that terrifying thought haunts nonetheless. Because I know how possible it is. Because we’ve attended one

Military Spouse Contributor

In this day of social media, we have friends all across the country that we can communicate with at the stroke of a key. Whether it is texting or typing, we are connected as never before. Can I ask you a question ... are you lonely? Sometimes the very technology that connects us can leave us lonely. When you need girl chat (or guy chat), do you reach for your iPhone to call ... or text? Do you meet for coffee or sit at the screen typing? What is a friend? MerriamWebster defines a friend as, “one attached to another by affection or esteem, a favored companion.” Companion is defined as “one that accompanies another, one that keeps company with another – one that is closely connected with something similar.” We need friends. We are created to have that favored companion, to be closely connected, to be affec-

tionately attached to others. And this differs from the “friends” on Facebook and Twitter. How many people follow you on Twitter? How many friends on Facebook? Of those, how many will be there to clean your house, sit with you when you’ve had a bad day? Did you know that “friend” or “friendship” is in the Top-1 percent of terms looked up on Merriam-Webster’s site? I think, maybe, many of us are trying to figure out friendship in this new age of technology. Friendships, to be healthy and fulfilling, need to be “give and take.” To have that companion walk with you, you must be willing to “be” that companion to walk with another. This is true in marriage, but also in friendship. I hear from many women expressing the challenge of friendship and loneliness. Relocation can leave us separated from strong, supportive relationships, and often when we need them

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Six months later By Bianca Martinez Military Spouse Contributor

This week, I would like to take a moment of silence to remember the sad loss that happened six months ago when a Chinook crashed in Afghanistan on Aug. 6, 2011. Thirtyone heroes lost their lives in one day, and it’s simply too much to fathom. While they may be gone, they are certainly not forgotten ... nor are the families. Take a moment this week to reflect and pray for the families who continue to move forward.

of those funerals. One where my pilot wore his dark uniform in the heat of the summer – to denote that he was in the squadron that lost one. I stood arm-in-arm with wives in black – watching one plane disappear in the missing man formation. Wondering how my fairytale life really did become something out of a movie. And it is that moment that centers me back to my romantic reality. I don’t get fantasy dates that end with roses – but I get a brave husband who keeps flying, despite the tragedy around him. And if I could offer advice to those girls, who are now off in college and pondering their own ever after, I would remind them that true romance is found in tiny, captured moments in between the life-changing ones. Like a late, dried out, but still warm dinner with the one who love – who managed to come home tonight. Tiffany Silverberg is Navy wife and foodie with an independent streak. As a freelance writer, she brings years of journalism and language experience to non-profits, businesses and families, telling their stories online and offline. When she’s not working, she’s drinking red wine, cooking, knitting or sewing or driving around, sometimes with her pilot husband in the passenger seat. You can visit her website at


Married to the Military

most – during deployment. I do not have five easy steps to attract friends. What I do have is ideas and tips to “become” a good friend. Deb is my persistent friend. Deb decided we were going to be friends – without my knowledge and/or consent. Deb demonstrated characteristics of friendship that drew me into her loving circle of friends. 1. Patience: Deb was willing to wait for me to respond to her overtures of friendship. She did not expect me to respond in a certain timeframe. Good thing too – it took almost a year. 2. Acceptance: Deb knows we all have ‘blemishes.’ She chooses to overlook these items and see the person behind them. I have always felt accepted by Deb. She may not always agree with me, but she always accepts me as a person. 3. Consistent persistence: This is the attribute that bothered me most about Deb, but I most love and appreciate now. Deb reached

■ a good friend Patience, acceptance, consistent persistence, selflessness and forgiveness are characteristics of friendship.

out to me consistently with an email and phone call once a week for nine months before I accepted an invitation to get together. Wow! 4. Selfless: Deb didn’t want to be my friend to “get” something from me. She befriended me to give, to share. She looked for ways to be companions on the same journey with me. 5. Forgiveness: Deb was quick to forgive me when I was stupid. She was equally quick to ask forgiveness when she wronged me. Building deep friendships take time, but with these characteristics, we can build friends that will enhance our lives and we will add to theirs. As military spouses, I have seen the road to friendship accelerated by the very nature of our lifestyle. Don’t be discouraged. Work on becoming that friend and watch what friends bloom in your life.

You can catch Bianca Martinez anchoring the 4 p.m., 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. newscasts with Kurt Williams, Barbara Ciara, and Juliet Bickford during the work week. You can also follow her laughter, stress and tears as a military wife in her blog, “Married to the Military,” weekly in the Flagship. Reach out to Bianca at bianca.


Wounded Warriors take to the Ice By Bernard Little Walter Reed National Military Medical Center Public Affairs


Wounded Warriors from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) took to the ice at Rockville Ice Arena, Jan. 27, to play a competitive game of adaptive sled hockey for the first time as part of their rehabilitation. “It was nice (and) a good opportunity,” said Marine Corps Cpl. Kevork Khachadurian, 22. “I never even watched hockey before and wasn’t really interested, but it was fun.” Khachadurian, who was injured in Afghanistan by an improvised explosive device (IED) in August 2011, said the most challenging part of adaptive sled hockey is keeping his balance on the ice, but said he would definitely try it again. Khachadurian was injured while navigating safe routes using maps and metal detectors to identify IEDs when he stepped on one detonating it, resulting in the loss of both his legs and severe hand injuries. Spc. Brynden Keller, 25, said the adaptive sled hockey was a surprisingly enjoyable experience. “I like the competitive aspect of it and it was a great workout,” said Keller, also injured by an IED in Afghanistan. This adaptive sled hockey clinic was the inaugural event between USA Warriors Hockey and WRNMMC’s Military Advance Training Center (MATC) Adaptive Sports Rehabilitation and Therapeutic Recreation Program, according to Kira M. Zevan, assistant in the WRNMMC Adaptive Sports Rehabilitation and Therapeutic Recreation program. She

said five more monthly clinics are scheduled beginning Feb. 10. Although the adaptive sled hockey clinic was new to some, for others, it brought back memories. “One Wounded Warrior said he missed ‘the smell of ice’ and thought he’d never be able to play hockey again after losing both his legs,” said Zevan. “Others appreciated learning a new skill, as well as experiencing the speed on the ice.” The slick surface was challenging for some of the Wounded Warriors at first, but they were quick learners and got back in their sleds and resumed play. “The Wounded Warriors found the equipment and gear the most challenging,” said Zevan. “The Warriors donned shoulder pads, padded bottoms, hockey gloves, helmet with a face guard, and the USA Warriors Hockey team jersey.” “While on the ice, they had to balance inside the sled, which has two blades on the bottom, as well as be able to propel themselves forward using the ‘teeth’ on the bottom of the hockey sticks. Most of the Wounded Warriors, who participated, were double amputees who lost both legs. “Like the rest of the adaptive sports we offer, the equipment can be modified and adapted to the injury, so the possibilities are nearly endless. Whether the injury or injuries involve the upper or lower extremities, there are prosthetics and/or equipment that can assist (them),” said Zevan. Michael Vaccaro, USA Warriors Hockey sled hockey coach, said he has helped train Wounded Warriors for

One Wounded Warrior said he missed ‘the smell of ice’ and thought he’d never be able to play hockey again after losing both his legs.” - Kira M. Zevan, assistant for the WRNMMC Adaptive Sports Rehabilitation and Therapeutic Recreation program

■ the game Players have to balance inside a sled with two blades at the bottom, as well as propel themselves forward using the ‘teeth’ at the bottom of the hockey sticks.

Sarah Fortney Wounded Warriors from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center take to the ice as part of their rehabilitation for a game of adaptive sled hockey at the Rockville Ice Arena.

about three years. “I played hockey my whole life growing up in Buffalo,” said Vaccaro. “When I got back from Iraq and was talking with someone at the VA hospital, they told me about the program and I started skating with them. Now I help coach the sled team.” “It’s rewarding to help a fellow veteran get back to enjoying a sport that he used to enjoy, and thought he might

not be able to play again, or a veteran who is just learning the sport. These guys make it look easy. With their military background, they have learned to adapt and overcome the challenges,” Vaccaro added. “Recreation therapy is the extension of Wounded Warriors’ rehab plan through occupational and physical therapy,” said Tiffany S. Smith, certified therapeutic recre-

ation specialist at WRNMMC in the Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation. “Everything Wounded Warriors have learned and trained for under their clinical therapist in the hospital setting are being transferred to an adaptive sports activity outside the clinic.” She said adaptive sports programs offer patients the opportunity to excel in their rehabilitation.

“Wounded Warriors have an opportunity to see their physical capabilities and limitations outside the clinic,” Smith continued. “Therapeutic recreation provides Wounded Warriors the opportunity to increase independency, cognitive abilities, physical capabilities and work on social skills in a group setting under the supervision of a recreation therapist. The primary goal is to improve Wounded Warriors quality of life by introducing them to alternative, more active lifestyles.” Army Sgt. Keith McCormack is a certified occupational therapy assistant at WRNMMC who helps with rehabilitation of Wounded Warriors. “Playing a competitive sport is good for morale and helps them build confidence,” said McCormack. “This helps them with what they are going to do with their lives after they leave (WRNMMC).”

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■ about this feature Maritime Strategy – “A Cooperative Strategy for 21st Century Seapower” binds our services – the Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard – more closely together than they have ever been before to advance the prosperity and security of our Nation. For more information, visit

Maritime Strategy The Flagship | | 02.09.12 | B4

AAVs JOIN WASP FOR BOLD ALLIGATOR By MC3 Stuart B. Phillips USS Wasp Public Affairs


Amphibious Assault Vehicles (AAVs) assigned to the 2nd Amphibious Assault Battalion, Delta Company, 1st and 2nd platoons, embarked the amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD 1), Feb. 2. The 11 vehicles will play a pivotal role in exercise Bold Alligator, the first large-scale amphibious operation undertaken by the Navy and Marine Corps in 10 years. “The AAVs play a pretty large role because they’re basically moving all the infantry to the beach,” said Gunnery Sgt. Henry Salgado, of 3rd platoon, a Watertown, New York native. The benefit of having AAVs available is that each vehicle can carry up to 21 combat-loaded troops, so with 11 AAVs, we’re capable of taking over 200 Marines to the beach at one time.” Having AAVs aboard will be a learning experience for both young Sailors and Marines as their respective branches work together in the amphibious realm of maritime operations.

An amphibious assault vehicle (AAV) of the 2AA Battalion, Delta company, 3rd platoon wades into the Atlantic Ocean as it moves toward amphibious assault ship USS Wasp (LHD 1) during the initial phase of Exercise Bold Alligator 2012, the largest naval amphibious exercise in the past 10 years.

Photos by MCSN Darien G. Kenney

“Part of the challenge is that this type of ship doesn’t normally take on AAVs, so it’s good for us to have this kind of capability on here,”

said Staff Sgt. Jason Matlat, assigned to Combat Cargo aboard Wasp. “Usually, from a ship like this, we would use LCACs (landing craft,

air cushion) to send all our trucks and cargo ashore. With the AAVs, it’s like having 11 extra amphibious vehicles to take people and cargo ashore.”

Adding two AAV platoons to Wasp’s armament certainly increases capability, but it also requires some flexibility to accommodate so much equipment. “A lot of the Navy and a lot of the Marines with Combat Cargo have never really dealt with getting this kind of vehicle up here into the well deck,” said Matlat. “It’s going to be a little tricky trying to work them up nice and slow into the right spots.” Getting the AAVs onto the ship is only half the equation, though. Equipment that is frequently exposed to or submerged in saltwater is bound to require intensive maintenance to remain combat ready. “The maintenance is a big part of working with AAVs,” said Salgado, who has 16 years of AAV experience. “Reliability can be in question, sometimes because some of the parts can break down. That’s probably the biggest disadvantage. For the most part, the daily maintenance and preventative maintenance we do is to minimize how much we break.” Regardless of the challeng-

Valentine’s Specials

Marines of the 2AA Battalion, Delta company, 3rd platoon prepare to go in their amphibious assault vehicles (AAVs), which are heading to USS Wasp.

es that crop up and the constant maintenance, the AAVs will be ready to deliver when the time comes. “They’ll go out first and hit the beach, and right behind them will come the LCACs with the rest of the cargo that’s on the ship,” said Matlat. “I’d say that’s what they bring to the fight, another way to get to the beach, but with a little more firepower.” The AAVs aboard Wasp will carry just one small part of the more than 14,000 Sailors and Marines that are revitalizing the amphibious capabilities of the force during Bold Alligator 2012. Bold Alligator focuses on today’s fight with today’s forces, while showcasing the advantages of seabasing. The exercise takes place Jan. 30 through Feb. 12, afloat and ashore in and around Virginia and North Carolina. Join the conversation about Bold Alligator 2012 on social media using #BA12. For more information, visit,, or www.


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U.S. Navy file photo During the 2010 income tax season, Navy volunteers with the VITA/ ELF program filed more than 58,000 federal and state tax returns, saving service members and their family members more than $6.9 million in commercial tax preparation fees.

Navy Tax Assistance Centers open for tax preparation By Dania Bardavid Office of the Judge Advocate General Public Affairs


More than 100 Navy Tax Assistance Centers around the world are now open for business, ready to assist Sailors and their family members with their taxes. Tax Assistance Centers provide Sailors, retirees and their dependent family members, as well as reservists in limited cases, and DoD civilians overseas or deployed with the U.S. Armed Forces, the ability to get help with their taxes for free by IRStrained volunteers. The purpose of this program is to help out Sailors, primarily junior enlisted Sailors and their dependents, by providing a means for them to get their taxes done at no cost. It is a great service that takes care of the Sailor, so that they can focus on accomplishing their mission. Navy tax assistance centers are a terrific resource for Sailors to get free assistance with their taxes almost anywhere around the globe and afloat. Sailors who electronically file their taxes at our tax centers can expect to receive their refund within 8 - 15 days. During the 2010 income tax season, Navy volunteers with the VITA/ELF program filed more than 58,000 federal and state tax returns, saving service members and their family members more than $6.9 million in commercial tax preparation fees. The tax centers expedited $75 million in tax refunds, with 59 percent of those for pay grades E-1 to E-6. This year, Naval Legal Service Command is transitioning to self-service tax assistance at its tax assistance centers within the continental U.S. and Hawaii. This will not affect overseas locations and Guam or tax assistance at most fleet-run sites. The self-service program educates Sailors on tax preparation and promotes self-reliance and financial accountability, a life-long skill. Under self-service, Sailors and their families file their own tax returns using free tax filing software on computers established in Navy Tax Assistance Centers with the assistance of IRS-trained volunteers. Taxes are submitted electronically and refunds are deposited directly into a Sailor’s bank account on an average of two weeks from the date of transmission. Sailors using a Tax Assistance Center will save money. Commercial tax preparation companies charge on average, more than $170 for the average electronically-filed return. There is no charge for VITA/self-service tax preparation.

■ who’s eligible Sailors, retirees and their dependent family members, reservists in limited cases, and DoD civilians overseas or deployed with the U.S. Armed Forces have access to the Tax Assistance Centers.

Using a Tax Assistance Center also reduces errors that can occur when preparing taxes on your own. Tax center volunteers are trained and certified by the IRS, and are very knowledgeable on how to prepare your taxes. Sailors using a Tax Assistance Center will also avoid being marketed a short-term, high-interest loan that they do not need by tax preparation companies. Taxes are due this year on April 17, and Tax Assistance Centers in the U.S. will be open through this date to accommodate Sailors. Sailors overseas will receive an automatic two-month extension to file their taxes, so overseas VITA centers will stay open for that time. Sailors deployed to a combat zone, or who are part of a contingency operation, get an automatic extension to file their taxes for at least 180 days upon their return. Tax Assistance Centers in large fleet concentration and ECRC areas, such as Norfolk and San Diego, assist Sailors who are returning from a deployment year-round. Sailors who wish to file “married filing jointly” and who wish to file their tax return electronically must be present with their spouse to sign the required forms. If their spouse cannot be present, they will need a valid power of attorney for tax preparation. Sailors who are deployed to a combat zone and wish to file “married filing jointly,” but did not give their spouse a power of attorney may still file their taxes. The spouse must attach a signed statement explaining that the Sailor is currently serving in a combat zone. The VITA program and self-service program is available to those who qualify for legal assistance, including active duty military and their dependent family members, retirees and their dependent family members, reservists in certain circumstances and Department of Defense civilians in limited circumstances when overseas, in a combat zone or on a contingency operation. A complete list of U.S. Navy Tax Assistance Centers is available online by accessing the Navy JAG website and clicking on the banner at the bottom of the home page for tax information. For more news from Navy Judge Advocate General, visit

As service members begin preparing for the annual tax season, they may want to consider a new savings plan designed for young people, a Defense Department tax official said, Feb. 3. Service members and their dependents who earn less income today than they expect to earn in the future, such as those in junior ranks who look forward to getting promoted to higher grades, should consider investing in the Thrift Savings Plan’s new Roth option, said Army Lt. Col. Evan Stone, director of the Armed Forces Tax Council. “The Roth TSP is a good option for service members who are paying less tax now than they expect to pay later,” Stone said during an interview with the Pentagon Channel and American Forces Press Service. The traditional Thrift Savings Plan defers taxes on earned income until

the money is withdrawn, Stone explained. The Roth option allows a member to contribute after-tax dollars that grow tax-free and are not taxed upon withdrawal, he said. Both plans allow a maximum annual contribution of $17,000, he said, up from $16,500 last year. There are few other changes that apply to service members and their dependents this tax season, Stone said. A new calculation for Imminent Danger Pay does not change service members’ eligibility for income tax exclusions. The pay was changed from a flat $225 per month, to an amount prorated per day. Stone said there has been no change to federal income tax brackets in the past two years. They remain at 10, 15, 25, 28, 33 and 35 percent of taxable income, he said. Still, Stone said, many people don’t realize that income is taxed on a progressive scale, so as a person’s income increases and they move into a higher tax bracket, only the new proportion

of pay is taxed at the higher rate, not all of their income. While few people enjoy writing a check to “Uncle Sam,” Stone also noted that the military is a good employer come tax time, because military allowances, such as those for housing and meals, are not taxable. “Military members have a tax advantage by having a chunk of their regular pay as tax-exempt income,” he said. Stone said he wants to remind service members that they and their dependents can get free tax preparation by IRS-trained volunteers at almost every military installation in the world. “The military has an excellent program for tax preparation worldwide,” he said. “Deployed service members do not have to sign the tax forms if their spouse has power of attorney privileges.” Military OneSource offers free taxrelated phone consultations, seven days-a-week, from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., at (800) 730-3802.


I think this goes beyond the military service. We need to increase our education levels and reduce criminal levels if we are going to succeed as a nation.”

GETTING THE KIDS READY More than 275 flag officers have taken the challenge of getting schools to turn out military-worthy students By MC1 (AW) Tim Comerford The Flagship Staff Writer


The Battleship Wisconsin in Norfolk was host to three retired flag officers who took time out of their schedules to impart important information affecting children in the United States today and call on law makers to take ownership of America’s future, Feb. 2. The two former Air Force generals and the former Coast Guard admiral were part of more than 275 flag level officers that have joined the nonprofit group called “Mission: Readiness.” Mission: Readiness seeks to educate policymakers in order to expand high-quality early childhood education programs, increase access to healthier food at school and improve the quality and quantity of Physical Education. Research done by Dr. Curtis L. Gilroy, Director, Accession Policy, in the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, showed that 75 percent of adults from the ages of 17 - 24 in the U.S. today are ineligible for military service. The statistics pointed to three main culprits of this ineligibility: obesity, criminal records or lack of a high school education. The statistics are dire enough for Air Force Gen. Richard E. Hawley (ret.), Coast Guard Adm. James M. Loy (ret.) and Air Force Major Gen. David M. Edgington (ret.) to visit Norfolk

to speak and push the point home. These retired senior leaders feel that, in the long run, this may hurt the military and America. “Those high rates are not only regrettable for those young people who are unable to enlist and gain the benefits from public service in our military – the workouts, the discipline, the pride that comes with the awareness of self – but also weakens the military’s ability to train and maintain a strong military to keep America safe,” said Hawley. “We certainly want the people to be able to join the service, and be eligible to do so, and we want to be able to hold to those people throughout their career,” said Loy. “I think this goes beyond the military service,” said Edgington. “We need to increase our education levels and reduce criminal levels if we are going to succeed as a nation.” Part of the reason are the subjects that are being favored, said one member of the Mission Readiness program. “I think we have a great shortage of qualified people for jobs in the United States. Our educational system has developed poets instead of engineers,” said U.S. Marine Lt. Gen. Jack W. Klimp (ret.). “It may be we need to develop poet-engineers. In the six years since I retired, I have worked in drug rehabilitation and have seen a number of young people whose opportunities in this world are limited because of their lack of education.”

- Air Force Major Gen. David M. Edgington

Photos by MC1(AW) Tim Comerford Air Force Major Gen. David M. Edgington (ret.), former Chief of Staff, U.S. Joint Forces Command; Coast Guard Adm. James M. Loy (ret.), former commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard; and Air Force Gen. Richard E. Hawley (ret.), former commander of Langley Air Force Base came to the Battleship Wisconsin in Norfolk, Feb. 2, to speak to media about a program called Mission: Readiness.

And the training levels of forces have gone up as well. “The challenges that we present to these kids today are much more challenging. Think about what these young Soldiers and Marines go through every day in Afghanistan. They are dealing with a different culture and it is important that they be good ambassadors. As they approach the people, they have to understand that culture. That is asking a lot of

a young person and we do it all the time,” said Hawley. “The technological advances that every platform on all five of our services utilize, demands a sophistication level that we can begin to breed by an investment in Pre-kindergarten,” said Loy. “I grew up in a home with a mother who was a school teacher, a father who was a business man, and they spent a lot of time with my brother and I teaching us to read,” said Edgington. “It was a great environment and I had a lot of advantages. A lot of the young people today don’t have any advantages, and pre-school can help overcome some of

■ the statistics Research shows that 75 percent of adults from the ages of 17 - 24 in the U.S. today are ineligible for military service. Obesity, criminal records or lack of a high school education appear to be the main causes. that deficit.” This means that the school systems will have to change to become more competitive with the rest of the worlds educational environments. “We are trying to understand what is needed for Vir-

ginia’s children, for America’s children. The children need the early education skills. It helps a lot for children to get that leg-up and start school – ready to learn,” said Amy Dawson Taggart, the Mission: Readiness National Director. And all in all, this is the future of America. “Who wouldn’t think that, the qualification of America’s youth to sustain the legacy that we are leaving behind as leaders of the military, isn’t something we should dedicate our post-military careers to supporting,” said Edgington. For more information on Mission: Readiness, visit

Air Force Major Gen. David M. Edgington, (ret.) former Chief of Staff, U.S. Joint Forces Command speaks to the assembled audience in the Battleship Wisconsin’s galley as (left to right) Air Force Gen. Richard E. Hawley (ret.), former commander of Langley Air Force Base; Coast Guard Adm. James M. Loy (ret.), former commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard; and Amy Dawson Taggart, Mission: Readiness National Director listen.


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| President encourages hiring veterans to be ďŹ rst responders OBAMA

of the actions we took,â&#x20AC;? he noted. â&#x20AC;&#x153;But budgets are still tight and thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a problem we need to ďŹ x. Jobs that protect our families and our communities shouldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t be the ďŹ rst on the chopping block. They should be one of our highest priorities as a nation.â&#x20AC;? Obama emphasized he wants to restore local communities and national parks, noting Interior Secretary Ken Salazarâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s presence. The Department of the Interior manages and sustains the countryâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s lands, water, wildlife and energy resources, among its other responsibilities. â&#x20AC;&#x153;He needs some help,â&#x20AC;? Obama said of Salazar. â&#x20AC;&#x153;And our veterans are highly qualiďŹ ed to help him. Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve already risked their lives defending America. They should have the opportunity to rebuild America. Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve got roads and bridges in and around our national parks in need of repair. Letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ďŹ x them.â&#x20AC;? Veterans Affairs Secretary Eric K. Shinseki said in a conference call with reporters, Feb. 2, that the new threepart Veterans Job Corps initiative â&#x20AC;&#x153;will ensure our veterans donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to ďŹ ght for jobs once they come home.â&#x20AC;? Shinseki called on em-

Continued from B1 Americans went to war, some of you answered that call, as well.â&#x20AC;? The president encouraged the hiring of veterans to replenish the ranks of the nationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ďŹ rst responders. â&#x20AC;&#x153;First, we want to help communities hire more veterans as cops and ďŹ reďŹ ghters,â&#x20AC;? he said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Over the past few years, tight budgets have forced a lot of states, a lot of local communities, to lay off a lot of ďŹ rst responders.â&#x20AC;? The country already has made progress in veteransâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; employment, Obama said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Already, weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve helped 600,000 veterans and their family members go back to school on the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill,â&#x20AC;? he said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve hired over 120,000 veterans to serve in the federal government (and) weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve made it easier for veterans to access all sorts of employment services.â&#x20AC;? When he ďŹ rst became president, Obama said, one of his ďŹ rst actions was to ensure state and local governments received assistance through the Recovery Act to avoid laying off ďŹ rst responders. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Thousands of ďŹ reďŹ ghter jobs were saved because

ployers to â&#x20AC;&#x153;enlist veterans in the work of rebuilding our nation.â&#x20AC;? The nation owes those who volunteered to serve in uniform after 9/11 â&#x20AC;&#x153;a debt of gratitude,â&#x20AC;? said Shinseki, â&#x20AC;&#x153;and we must ensure that veterans who come home from Afghanistan and Iraq get the opportunities they deserve.â&#x20AC;? Obama lauded veterans for their resolve and â&#x20AC;&#x153;unparalleled skills and experience.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve saved lives in some of the toughest conditions imaginable,â&#x20AC;? he said.

â&#x20AC;&#x153;Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve managed convoys and moved tons of equipment over dangerous terrain. Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve tracked millions of dollars of military assets.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;Theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve handled pieces of equipment that are worth tens of millions of dollars,â&#x20AC;? he added. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They do incredible work. Nobody is more skilled, more precise, more diligent, more disciplined.â&#x20AC;? Obama noted these are â&#x20AC;&#x153;challengingâ&#x20AC;? times for America, but â&#x20AC;&#x153;weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve faced challenging times before.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;On the grounds here

youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve got a stone from the Pentagon and a beam from the World Trade Center,â&#x20AC;? he said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;And that reminds us of our resolve as a people.â&#x20AC;? â&#x20AC;&#x153;They remind us that when we come together as one people and as one community, one nation, then we prevail,â&#x20AC;? Obama continued. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s who we are.â&#x20AC;? America exists because of values and teamwork â&#x20AC;&#x201C; generations of Americans working together to build it, the president said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;This is a nation where, out

Army Sgt. 1st Class Tyrone C. Marshall, Jr. President Barack Obama talks about his new Veteran Job Corps initiative to replenish the nationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s ďŹ rst responders at Fire Station #5 in Arlington, Va., Feb. 3. Obama chose Fire Station #5 because its ďŹ reďŹ ghters were among the ďŹ rst responders to arrive at the Pentagon during the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks.

of many, we come together as one,â&#x20AC;? said Obama. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Those are the values that every veteran understands.â&#x20AC;?

ARM | Next phase is to apply technology to prosthetic legs, incorporate sense of touch â&#x20AC;&#x153;training,â&#x20AC;? using the Virtual Integrated Environment (VIE), which records an individualâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s muscle movements. By collecting their muscle data, the MPL is then suited for the individual. This gives the amputee time to learn how to use the device, ďŹ t them for it, then see how they work with it, he said. Air Force Tech Sgt. Joe Delauriers, the ďŹ rst patient at WRNMMC to begin using the MPL, described the device as â&#x20AC;&#x153;pretty comfortable,â&#x20AC;? and said he is grateful for the opportunity to be involved with the project. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s really fun working with the hand and (exciting) to see whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s going to be coming in the future,â&#x20AC;? said Delauriers. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Any input I can put into the program, to help them out â&#x20AC;&#x201C; and future amputees â&#x20AC;&#x201C; itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s an honor for me. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s very rewarding.â&#x20AC;? Four months ago, Delauriers was injured by an IED blast in Afghanistan, which caused him to lose both his legs and part of his left arm. He said

Continued from B1 be learned on how the human body can integrate with computers and computer interface, and I think the skyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s the limit in terms of what we will do over the next ďŹ ve to 10 years.â&#x20AC;? The next logical phase in the MPLâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s development is to incorporate sense of touch and apply this technology to prosthetic legs in the future, said Cmdr. Jack Tsao, Director of the Traumatic Brain Injury Programs for Navy Medicineâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Bureau of Medicine and Surgery. A neurologist who also assisted in the project, Tsao said fortunately many amputees have expressed interest and seem willing to participate and help advance this research. â&#x20AC;&#x153;What I think is fantastic is that we actually, because of this study, now have another option to treat amputees,â&#x20AC;? said Tsao. Before being ďŹ tted to use the device, Tsao explained amputees must ďŹ rst go through

itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s an indescribable feeling to be where he is today, thanks to advancements in care. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m living off-base, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m driving, (and) Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m living with my (infant) son. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m able to hold him without any open wounds, infections,â&#x20AC;? he said. â&#x20AC;&#x153;They do such a great job here, with therapy. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s just amazing.â&#x20AC;? The Airman said he can only imagine what these advancements will lead to in another decade. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The technology is only going to keep getting better,â&#x20AC;? said Tsao. â&#x20AC;&#x153;If guys like Joe can regain function, this would be revolutionizing to their lives, especially in the multiple limb amputees. Any degree of function and independence you can give back to someone is the most important thing.â&#x20AC;? Pasquina also expressed his enthusiasm for this development, stating that he can recall when the device was merely a sketch on paper. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s something I still ďŹ nd amazing,â&#x20AC;? said Pasquina.

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He is also amazed by the stories of the Wounded Warriors making such strides in their recovery. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Time after time, you see people not only recover, but thrive after severe injuries, and theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re inspirational to all of us, to us as medical staff who have the honor of taking care of them. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s humbling to be a part of that,â&#x20AC;? he said. Pasquina added that heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll continue his efforts to make


African American History Month

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Body Slam! TNA Wrestling stars coming to Norfolk ■ when and where Constant Center, Norfolk Feb. 10, 7:30 p.m. Scheduled to appear are Kurt Angle (left), Jeff Hardy, James Storm, Bobby Roode and the TNA Knockouts. For more info, go to Page C5



F L AG S H I P N E W S . C O M


0 2 . 0 9 . 12

Exploring the history of

Valentine’s Day Compiled by The Flagship Staff

Some people might wonder why we celebrate Valentine’s Day. Beyond the candied hearts, big cards and romantic meals, there is a spark of mysterious original intent surrounding the special day. The history of Valentine’s Day is somewhat of a mystery, but what we do know is that February has long been celebrated as a month of romance. St. Valentine’s Day, as we know it today, contains traces of both Christian and ancient Roman traditions. But who was St. Valentine and how did he become associated with this ancient rite? The Catholic Church recognizes at least three different saints named Valentine or Valentinus – all of whom were martyred. One legend contends that Valentine was a priest who served during the third century in Rome. When Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better Soldiers than those with wives and families, he outlawed marriage for young men. Valentine, realizing the injustice of the decree, defied Claudius II and continued to perform marriages for young lovers

in secret. When Valentine’s actions were discovered, he ordered to be put to death. Other stories suggest that Valentine may have been killed for attempting to help Christians escape harsh Roman prisons, where they were often beaten and tortured. According to one legend, an imprisoned Valentine actually sent the first “valentine” greeting himself after he fell in love with a young girl – possibly his jailor’s daughter – who visited him during his confinement. Before his death, it is alleged that he wrote her a letter signed “From your Valentine” – an expression that is still in use today. Although the truth behind the Valentine legends is unclear, the stories all emphasize his appeal as a sympathetic, heroic and – most importantly – romantic. By the Middle Ages, perhaps thanks to his reputation, Valentine become one of the most popular saints in England and France. It was commonly believed that Feb. 14 was the beginning of birds’ mating season, which added to the idea that the middle of Valentine’s Day should be a day for romance. Although Valentine greetings have been

popular dating back to the Middle Ages, the written Valentine didn’t begin to appear until after 1400A.D. The oldest knownValentine still in existence today was a poem written in 1415 A.D. by Charles, Duke of Orleans, to his wife while he was imprisoned in the Tower of London following his capture at the Battle of Agincourt. (The greeting is now part of the manuscript collection of the British Library in London, England.) Several years later, it is believed that King Henry V hired a writer named John Lydgate to compose a Valentine note to Catherine of Valois. Over the centuries, the holiday evolved, and by the 18th century, gift-giving and exchanging handmade cards on Valentine’s Day had become common place. Handmade Valentine cards made of lace, ribbons and featuring cupids and hearts eventually spread to the American colonies. The tradition of Valentine’s cards did not become widespread in the United States, however, until the 1850s. In addition to the United States, Valentine’s Day is celebrated in Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom, France and Australia.

■ valentine’s facts and figures • In 1537, England’s King Henry VII officially declared February 14 as St. Valentine’s Day. • Richard Cadbury produced the first box of chocolates for Valentine’s Day in the late 1800s. • More than 35 million heart-shaped boxes of chocolate will be sold for Valentine’s Day. • Over $1 billion worth of chocolate is purchased for Valentine’s Day in the U.S. • 73 percent of people who buy flowers for Valentine’s Day are men, while only 27 percent are women. • 15 percent of U.S. women send themselves flowers on Valentine’s Day. • 189 million stems of roses are sold in the U.S. on Valentine’s Day. • Approximately one billion Valentines are sent out worldwide each year, according to estimates by the U.S. Greeting Card Association. That’s second only to Christmas. • Women purchase approximately 85 percent of all Valentines. • About 3 percent of pet owners will give Valentine’s Day gifts to their pets. • In the U.S., 64 percent of men do not make plans in advance for a romantic Valentine’s Day with their sweethearts. Compiled from

Valentine’s Day Elopement Are wedding plans giving you a headache? – his/her friends, silverware choices, centerpieces for the tables, where is everyone going to sit? For $295, you can get rid of questioning. The Valentine’s Day Elopement is strictly for the bride-and-groom only, with no guests. Times available are 4, 5, 6 and 7 p.m. The Valentine’s Day Elopement package includes: ■ Your wedding ceremony performed in the beautifully decorated Bayside Wedding Chapel in Virginia Beach. The wedding chapel is decorated with a wedding arch, candles, ferns and tiki torches. The fee for a non-denominational wedding officiant is included, and your legal documents will be filed immediately with the courts. ■ Your ceremony will be recorded and presented to you on a flash drive ready for viewing on any computer. From there, you can upload it to YouTube or make copies for friends and family. Reserve this package with $145 down. Balance is due on the wedding day. For more information, call 321-0348 or email

The Royal Chocolate Visit the Royal Chocolate on Valentine’s Day for Chocolate Fondue. A chocolate fondue is served for every two people attending this event. Choose Belgian milk, dark or white chocolate, and four items from the menu, including: fresh strawberries, apples, bananas, cake, pretzels and more. Each person attending receives their choice of beverage, and a special gift box of truffles is also included with this event. The event is $15 per person. Seatings are for 5, 7 and 8:30 p.m. on Valentines Day, with additional events Feb. 10 - 18. For reservations call 557-6925. For more information visit

Virginia is for Lovers 14k and 1.4 Miler The 2012 Virginia is for Lovers 14k and 1.4 Miler is a great way to kick off Valentine’s Day weekend. Enjoy this flat course with an indoor finish to Moe’s Southwest Grill food, adult beverages, live music and a sweet finisher item. Run Passionately! Register online at Registration cost is $25 and $60.

Parent’s Night Out ■ When

and where: Feb. 10, JEB Little Creek Drop the kids off from 6 to 10 p.m. for only $16 per person, includes a light dinner and fun activities! Open to ages 6 to 12. Call 462-8718 for details.

Valentine’s Day 2012 What to do and where to go in Hampton Roads

Valentine’s Dinner and a Movie ■ When and where: Feb. 11, NSA Northwest, Mariner Community Center Only $20 per couple from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Reservations and tickets are required. Call 421-8628 for details.

Don’t Forget Your Valentine!

Schedule of events: Feb. 10 to 8 p.m. – Packet pick-up/expo Virginia Beach Field House, 2157 Landstown Rd., Virginia Beach It is recommended that you pick up your packet on Friday so that you can familiarize yourself with parking, the start/ finish areas and the Virginia Beach Field House. Feb. 11 ■ 7 to 9 a.m. – Packet pick-up at Virginia Beach Field House ■ 9 a.m. – Virginia is For Lovers 14k starts at Virginia Beach Field House ■ 9:15 a.m. – 1.4 mile run starts ■ 10 a.m. -12:30 p.m. – Post race party ■ 11:30 a.m. – Awards ceremony (14k overall M/F and Masters M/F only) ■2

■ When and where: Taking entries through Feb. 13, NAS Oceana/Dam Neck Order a single rose, candy or personalized card to be delivered to a special person or co-worker for just $10. Or, in 700 words or less, describe your true love in an essay. The essay winner will be notified by Feb. 14. Call 433-298 or 492-6806 for details.

Valentine’s getaway ■ When

and where: Feb. 11, Wintergreen Ski Trip For the adventurous types, enjoy skiing, snowboarding and much more! Cost is dependent on rank and includes transportation ski or snowboard rental and lift tickets. Open to active duty and one guest. Meet in the C-9 lobby at 4 a.m. Must be 18 or older. Call 444-4033 for details.

1940s Valentine’s Hanger Dance ■ When

and where: Feb. 11, Military Aviation Museum Come dressed in your 1940s attire as we transform one of our hangars into a dance floor in celebration of Valentine’s Day. Terry Chesson Orchestra Band will be playing all the favorite Valentine’s Talent Show period hits to dance the night away to with members of the ■ When and where: Feb. 10, JEB Fort Story Swing Virginia Swing Dance Club. Dances will last from 6 to Come and show the kids your support from 6 to 8 p.m. 10 p.m. Cost is $40 per ticket with table discounts. First, 2nd and 3rd place ribbons will be awarded in each Tickets are limited and last year we sold out, so get your group! Open to ages five and older. tickets now at sign up in advance. Call 422-7714 for details. dance.

INSIDE: Check out Flagship Values, your source for automobiles, employment, real estate and more! Pages C6-7




â&#x2013; Volunteers: Ages 22 and older. â&#x2013;  For more information, contact:

Tom Crockett at 351-3737 or visit and click on â&#x20AC;&#x153;volunteer.â&#x20AC;?

USO Gala and Silent Auction â&#x2013; When: Feb. 11 â&#x2013;  Where: Hampton Roads Convention Center, Hampton â&#x2013;  For more information, contact: Main ofďŹ ce at 764-5232, or email

The USO of Hampton Roads and Central Virginia (USOHRCV) will host its annual Gala and Silent Auction. This yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s gala theme will be â&#x20AC;&#x153;A Tribute to Wounded Warriors.â&#x20AC;? The eveningâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s festivities will include a dinner program with entertainment by the Silver Strolling Strings, a silent and live auction and dessert and dancing with musical entertainment by the Right On Band. In addition, the USOHRCV will also hold a rafďŹ&#x201A;e where several items will be offered including a natural yellow diamond and diamond bracelet. Tickets will be sold prior to the event and winners do not nee to be present to claim their item.

â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Empty Bowlsâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; event

Spades night

â&#x2013; When: Feb. 10, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. â&#x2013;  Where: Peninsula Fine Arts Center,

â&#x2013; When: Feb. 11 and 18, 6 to 9 p.m. â&#x2013;  Where: Fort Story, Sandpiper Rec Center

Newport News â&#x2013; For more information, call: 422-7472 â&#x2013;  For more information, contact: Susan B. Yager at 289-6389, or visit www.empty- Sign you and a partner up by 1 p.m. Snacks provided and winners photo will be posted on the bragging wall. The goal of the ďŹ rst Peninsula-wide â&#x20AC;&#x153;Empty Bowlsâ&#x20AC;? is to feed hungry families Dodgeball tournament and individuals in the community. When â&#x2013;  When: Feb. 14, time TBA event guests purchase tickets, they receive â&#x2013;  Where: Flightline Fitness Center a simple meal of chef-crafted soup, plus â&#x2013;  For more information, call: 433-2200 bread and dessert, plus a handcrafted bowl of their choice. Live music. Advance NAS Oceana hosting free dodgeball tourtickets available â&#x20AC;&#x201C; cash or check only â&#x20AC;&#x201C; in nament. Entry deadline is Feb. 10. Newport News at Peninsula Fine Arts Center and in Hampton at Gallery at the Tuskegee Airman Chapman. Tickets are limited due to space â&#x2013;  When: Feb. 18, 11 a.m. considerations: $20 in advance, $25 at the â&#x2013;  Where: Military Aviation Museum door. One hundred percent of ticket sales â&#x2013;  For more information, call: 721-7767 will be donated to local hunger-ďŹ ghting organizations. Join the Military Aviation Museum in Vir-

Black History Month â&#x2013; When: Feb. 18, 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m. â&#x2013;  Where: Historic Jamestowne â&#x2013;  For more information, call: 898-2410

In celebration of Black History Month, and to commemorate the 150th Anniversary of the Civil War, Historic Jamestowne will offer special living history presentations highlighting the role played by African Americans at Jamestown during the conďŹ&#x201A;ict. The programs are open to the public and are included in the normal entrance fee of $10 for adults (under age 16 and Preservation Virginia members admitted free). Awardwinning historian and actor-interpreter Jerome Bridges will portray former slave turned Soldier Private Harrison Woodson of the 25th Corps United States Colored Troops (USCT).

Leeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Friends â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Helping People Live with Cancer

Together We Can Foundation

For a complete list of events in Hampton Roads or to submit your own, visit www.ďŹ&#x201A;

ginia Beach as they welcome Chief Master Sergeant Grant Williams, Sr., USAF (ret.), one of the original Tuskegee Airmen. Come hear all about his experiences and see the P-51 Mustang ďŹ&#x201A;yover.

Star Party/Laser Light Show â&#x2013; When: Feb. 11, 7 p.m. - 12:30 a.m. â&#x2013;  Where: Virginia Living Museum â&#x2013;  For more information, call: 595-9135,

or visit Free observing begins at sunset. Take a tour of the current night sky in the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Virginia Skiesâ&#x20AC;? planetarium program at 7:30 p.m. Planetarium laser shows include: Laser Retro (family) at 8:30 p.m., and Laser Metallica (hard rock) at 10 p.m. and Pink Floydâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s The Wall at 11:30 p.m. All shows $6, or $10 for a double feature.

Looking for stable and responsible men and women willing to volunteer an hour a week to work with a foster care youths to serve as a caring adult connection to the community. Service area is Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Chesapeake. We conduct monthly training sessions for free and require criminal and Child Protective Services background checks. Learn about becoming a life coach and our training schedule online.

StandUp For Kids â&#x2013; Volunteers: Ages 16 and older. â&#x2013;  For more information, contact:

Leslie Klosterman at (615) 545-9537 or visit www. Street Outreach: We walk the streets in search of homeless and at-risk youth, providing hygiene packs, food advice, clothing, survival gear and other services designated to ease their burden, earn their trust, and work towards ending their cycle of homelessness. We provide all necessary training and preparation via our experienced counselors and work in pairs. (Note: Available in Virginia Beach, Norfolk, Chesapeake and Portsmouth.)

Young Audiences of Virginia, Inc. â&#x2013; Volunteers: Ages 18 and older. â&#x2013;  For more information, contact:

Rebahka Scaccia at 466-7555 Ext. 308, or email

â&#x2013; Volunteers: Licensed drivers and good DMV record required. â&#x2013;  For more information, contact: Susan Lawler, at 440-7501

Drivers are needed to take cancer patients to treatment. Drive our car or your own vehicle.

Keep Norfolk Beautiful â&#x2013; Volunteers: Ages 17 and older. â&#x2013;  For more information, contact:

Lisa Renee Jennings at 441-1347 or email Recycling Ambassadors promote and monitor recycling at a variety of festivals and special events in Downtown Norfolk. Help to educate festival participants about recycling while enjoying many exciting festivals. Dates are on-going.

Childrenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Hospital of the Kings Daughters â&#x2013; Volunteers: Ages 18 and older. â&#x2013;  For more information, contact:

Beth Bowling at 668-7195 or visit volunteer Volunteers needed in the CHKD Kids and Co. gift shop. Assist patients, families and staff with their purchases in a fun retail environment. Volunteers needed on Wednesday mornings from 9 a.m. - Noon. Training and volunteer discount provided.

Animal Rescue of Tidewater â&#x2013; Volunteers: Ages 18 and older. â&#x2013;  For more information, contact:

Susan We are looking for data mining (research) Corbitt at 456-1354, or email caring4paws@ and data entry volunteers in our development department. Looking for a volunteer who can work 2-3 days a week. Foster homes needed. Please open your home and heart to a rescued dog or cat. All Habitat for Humanity South expenses are paid. You offer shelter and lovHampton Roads ing care while we ďŹ nd their forever home. â&#x2013; Volunteers: Ages 18 and older. Ages 16 The greatest need is for dogs over 36 lbs. and 17 can participate with waiver signed by parent/guardian. The American Red Cross of â&#x2013;  For more information, call: 640-0590 Southeastern Virginia There are four active build sites throughout Hampton Roads that need both skilled and non-skilled volunteers to help on build days. Work days are Wednesday - Saturday, 8:30 a.m.-3 p.m. (work days and hours vary by site). To sign up, go to www.shrhabitat. org and click on â&#x20AC;&#x153;Volunteer Up.â&#x20AC;? Signup is required. Locations in Portsmouth, Norfolk and Virginia Beach.

â&#x2013; Volunteers: Ages 16 and older. â&#x2013;  For more information, contact:


Dillard at 446-7775 The American Red Cross of Southeastern Virginia has a variety of volunteer opportunities, including: day time blood drive volunteers, an urgent need for volunteers to transport blood, disaster relief volunteers and transportation ofďŹ ce workers.

VOLUNTEER Hampton Roads strives to connect the military community with the people and organizations of Hampton Roads. Please visit Opportunity_Search_Page?p=vct for additional opportunities.

Tyrod Taylor challenges Hampton Roads to raise money ACT OFâ&#x20AC;˘VALOR NOW ON SALE!    â&#x20AC;˘  



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Baltimore Ravens quarterback Tyrod Taylor is challenging his hometown of Hampton Roads to raise at least $212 in 2012 to help the American Cancer Society save more lives through Relay For Life. Hampton Roads locals who sign up for Relay For Life and raise at least $212 by April 1 will be entered to win an autographed football by the NFL star. Relay For Life events are held overnight as individuals and teams camp out at an athletic track, park or other gathering area, with the goal of keeping at least one team member on the track or pathway at all times throughout the evening. Teams do most of their fundraising prior to the event, but some teams also hold creative fundraisers at their campsites during the event. Relay brings together friends, families, businesses, hospitals, schools, faith-based group and people from all walks of life aimed at furthering the American Cancer Societyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s efforts to save lives by helping

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/XWKHUDQ )DPLO\ 6HUYLFHV 2) 9,5*,1,$

*ULHI 6XSSRUW *URXS Facilitator: Dr. William E. Austin, Jr.

7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday evenings

Feb. 9-March 29, 2012 Good Shepherd Lutheran Church 1489 Laskin Rd., Virginia Beach 7KHUH LV QR FKDUJH EXW SOHDVH SUHUHJLVWHU E\ FDOOLQJ  Sponsored by Lutheran Family Services of VA

â&#x2013; good cause Hampton Roads locals who sign up for Relay For Life and raise at least $212 by April 1 will be entered to win an autographed football by Baltimore Ravens quarterback Tyrod Taylor.

people stay well, by helping them get well, by ďŹ nding cures and by ďŹ ghting back. More people raising at least $212 means more research, more cures, more survivors, more birthdays and more lives saved. The American Cancer Society combines an unyielding passion with nearly a century of experience

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to save lives and end suffering from cancer. As a global grassroots force of more than three million volunteers, they ďŹ ght for every birthday threatened by cancer in every community. They save lives by helping people stay well by preventing cancer or detecting it early, by helping people get well by being there for them during and after a cancer diagnosis, by ďŹ nding cures through investment in groundbreaking discovery, and by ďŹ ghting back by rallying lawmakers to pass laws to defeat cancer and by rallying communities worldwide to join the ďŹ ght. As the nationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s largest non-governmental investor in cancer research, contributing about $3.4 billion, Relay turns knowledge into action. As a result, more than 11 million people in America who have had cancer and countless more who have avoided it will be celebrating birthdays this year. To locate a Relay For Life event in Hampton Roads and ďŹ nd out how you may get involved, visit

Rockets to Racecars: The Science of Flight and Racing HAMPTON

Learn about the science of ďŹ&#x201A;ight and racing with Rockets to Racecars, a celebration in honor of Black History Month, Feb. LAW OFFICES OF MICHAEL J. WOODS, P.C. 11, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Virginia Air & Space Center. WE TRY ALL CRIMINAL CASES INCLUDING: This yearâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s celebration is bigger and better, featuring many DUI/DWI â&#x20AC;˘ RECKLESS DRIVING â&#x20AC;˘ SUSPENDED LICENSE â&#x20AC;˘ DRUG POSSESSION hands-on activities and special appearances by racing, aviation and space heroes. Special guests include NASA astronaut Benjamin A. Drew, Joint Base Langley-Eustis pilot Capt. Paul â&#x20AC;&#x153;Locoâ&#x20AC;? Lopez, members of the Tidewater Chapter of Tuskegee Airmen and racecar drivers from Langley Speedway. Special this year, kids get in free with purchase of adult Make an appointment today... Weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll help create your smile! exhibit admission. Rockets to Racecars activities are included EASTERN VIRGINIA ORAL & MAXILLOFACIAL SURGERY in regular exhibit admission. Fees apply for IMAX presentaTRENT P. CONELIAS, D.D.S. tions of Space Station 3D. BOARD CERTIFIED SURGICAL SPECIALIST Activities include: an autograph meet-n-greet with NASA Thank you astronaut Benjamin A. Drew STS-118 and STS-133; test BerDental Implants for your noulliâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Law; compare space shuttle tires with other types of Sleep Apnea Appliances WE ACCEPT service! tires; build you own small scale wind tunnel; become an air TRI-CARE Wisdom Teeth Extractionss trafďŹ c controller when you play NASAâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Smart Skies; particiOral Cancer Exam Receive 5% off with your Military I.D. And more... pate in ďŹ&#x201A;uttering fun; experiment with the effects of drag; test balloon-powered racing cars; explore the Mysteries of Flight with a live, science demonstration; and more. 757.424.2672 757.489.1511 For more information on Rockets to Racecars, call 7276033 Providence Rd 110 Kingsley Ln â&#x20AC;˘ Suite 303 Virginia Beach, VA 23464 Norfolk, Virginia 23505 0900 or visit




2012 Honda Ridgeline

Ridgeline delivers sporty uniqueness By Ken Chester, Jr. Motor News Media Corporation

The 2012 Honda Ridgeline four-door pickup takes advantage of innovative truck body construction and a steel reinforced composite bed to deliver true truck-like capabilities, like towing and honest-to-goodness cargo hauling. Equipped to the gills with innovative features and pickup truck firsts, the Ridgeline’s most unique feature is an In-Bed Trunk. Accessed by lifting up the hinged rear portion of the cargo bed floor, the In-Bed Trunk features 8.5 cu. ft. of secure, lockable and water resistant storage space. The spare tire is stored in a sliding tray inside the trunk and can accommodate a full-size spare tire. The Ridgeline half-ton pickup truck receives styling upgrades and improved highway fuel economy for 2012. Available in RT, RTS and RTL models, the Ridgeline adds an all-new Sport model for this model year. The new Ridgeline Sport adds the following features to the Ridgeline RT: exclusive black 18-inch aluminum alloy wheels (+1 inch from RT steel wheels); exclusive black honeycomb grille, with black surround; leather wrapped steering wheel with audio controls; auxiliary audio input jack; fog lights; rear privacy glass; all weather floor mats and black headlight and brake light housings.

■ under the hood Power for the 2012 Honda Ridgeline pickup truck is generated by a 3.5L V6 engine with torque communicated through a fivespeed automatic transmission and fully automatic 4-Wheel drive system.

Power for the Honda pickup truck is generated by a 3.5L V6 engine with torque communicated through a five-speed automatic transmission and fully automatic 4-Wheel drive system. The Ridgeline’s standard Variable Torque Management 4-Wheel Drive System (VTM4WD) is designed to transfer up to 70 percent of available torque to the rear wheels. Under normal conditions, the VTM-4WD system channels all power to the front wheels. In case you might think that the Ridgeline is some sort of compromise under the skin, guess again. Honda engineers designed the truck to handle the kinds of towing and offroad duties most common to truck users. Standard equipment dedicated to this purpose includes: transmission and power steering coolers, standard trailer hitch, a dual fan radiator, heavy-duty brakes and an exclusive fresh air intake system. The solid foundation of the Honda Ridgeline starts with a fully integrated truck frame with two longitudinal frame rails and seven

high-strength steel cross members that create a fully boxed, deep channel ladder frame structure full integrated into the upper body of the vehicle. The Honda pickup truck boasts a four wheel independent suspension system with MacPherson struts in front and a multi-link setup with trailing arm at the rear. Inside the airy cabin, the interior takes advantage of Honda’s unit-body packaging efficiency to deliver full-size interior space dimensions, while maintaining a garagefriendly, mid-size exterior footprint. The driving position provides ergonomically comfortable access to large and easy-to-use controls. Ridgeline’s large multi-function console features a sliding armrest and sliding lower tray – each with a hidden storage area. Other console storage areas accommodate items both large and small, like mobile phones, beverages, compact discs and portable digital music players. The 60/40 lift-up rear seats feature a storage area underneath large enough to accommodate a golf bag. Plus, the rear seating area can quickly convert for cargo duty by lifting the seats up to create enough room for a full-size mountain bike with the front tire removed. A low step-in height is combined with hand grips in the ‘A’ pillar and ‘B" pillars for front and rear passengers facilitates cabin entry and exit. The front doors also have an oversized hand grip designed to pull the doors closed easily.

■ Wheelbase: 122.0; overall

length: 206.9; width: 77.8; height: 70.3 (all vehicle measurements are in inches). ■ Engine: 3.5L V6 — 250 hp at 5,700 rpm and 247 lbs.-ft. of torque at 4,300 rpm ■ Transmission: five-speed automatic ■ EPA Fuel Economy: 15 city/ 21 highway ■ Payload capacity: 1,546 lbs. ■ Towing capacity: 5,000 lbs. ■ Safety features: Dual front airbags, front seat-mounted sideimpact airbags, dual head curtain side-impact airbags with rollover sensor, side-impact door beams, four-wheel disc brakes with anti-lock, brake assist, electronic brake distribution, traction control, vehicle stability assist, tire pressure monitoring system, daytime running lights, locking rear differential, engine immobilizer and remote keyless entry system. Sport adds fog lights. RTL adds HomeLink universal transceiver. Optional safety features include navigation system, Bluetooth hands free phone system and rearview camera. ■ Warranty: Basic — 3-year/ 36,000 mile; Powertrain — 5-year/ 60,000 mile; Corrosion — 5-year/ unlimited. ■ Pricing: The base Manufacturers Suggested Retail Price for the 2012 Honda Ridgeline starts from $29,250 for the RT up to $34,830. Destination charges add $810.

Courtesy of Motor News Media


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Connect with the top healthcare employers and schools in the region! Whether you are graduating from nursing school, switching medical careers, or thinking about joining the healthcare field, this is the opportunity you’ve been waiting for.


February 8th – February 22nd IN PERSON

Wednesday, February 15th 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. Constant Convocation Center 4320 Hampton Blvd., Norfolk

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RECRUITERS: Take advantage of this excellent opportunity to connect with hundreds of job seekers. To register your company, call Denise Wilson at (757) 446-2143.

Contact Columbia College’s local representative Jim Schermerhorn today at or call (757) 918-1900.


Arts& Entertainment

$2 Movies

The Flagship | | 02.09.12 | C4

JEB Little Creek Gator Theater – 462-7534 Friday, Feb. 10 7 p.m. —The Girl WithThe DragonTattoo (PG-13) Saturday, Feb. 11 1 p.m. — We Bought A Zoo (PG) 4 p.m. —The Girl WithThe DragonTattoo (PG-13) 7:30 p.m. —The Darkest Hour (PG-13) Sunday, Feb. 12 1 p.m. — We Bought A Zoo (PG) 4 p.m. — Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol (PG-13) 7 p.m. —The Devil Inside (R)


Safe House Oscar winner Denzel Washington (right) and Ryan Reynolds star in the action-thriller “Safe House.” For the past year, Matt Weston (Reynolds) has been frustrated by his inactive, backwater post in Cape Town. A “housekeeper” who aspires to be a full-fledged agent, the loyal company man has been waiting for an opportunity to prove himself. When the first and only occupant he’s had proves to be the most dangerous man he’s ever met, Weston readies for duty. Tobin Frost (Washington) has eluded capture for almost a decade. One of the best ops men that CIA has ever known, the ex-intelligence officer has given up assets and sold military intel to anyone with cash since he turned. From tracings secrets to North Korea to aiding splinter cells, the damage he’s done to the U.S. is immeasurable. And he’s now back on the reservation with a secret. As soon as Frost is brought in for debriefing, mercenaries come and tear apart Weston’s safe house. Barely escaping, the unlikely partners must discover if their attackers have been sent by terrorists or someone on the inside who will kill anyone standing in the way. Now it’s up to Weston to figure out who he can trust before they’re both eliminated from the game.

NAS Oceana Aerotheater – 433-2495 Friday, Feb.10 7 p.m. —The Girl WithThe DragonTattoo (PG-13) Saturday, Feb. 11 1 p.m. — Alvin &The Chipmunks: Chipwrecked (PG) 4 p.m. — We Bought A Zoo (PG) 7 p.m. —The Devil Inside (R) Sunday, Feb. 12 1 p.m. — Hugo (PG) 4 p.m. —The Darkest Hour (PG-13) 7 p.m. — War Horse (PG-13)

Journey 2: The Mysterious Island In this follow-up to 2008s “Journey to the Center of the Earth,” the new 3D family adventure “Journey 2: The Mysterious Island” begins when young Sean Anderson (Josh Hutcherson, reprising his role from the first film) receives a coded distress signal from a mysterious island where no island should exist. It’s a place of strange life forms, mountains of gold, deadly volcanoes and more than one astonishing secret. Unable to stop him from going, Sean’s new stepfather, Hank (Dwayne Johnson), joins the quest. Together with a helicopter pilot (Luis Guzman) and his beautiful, strong-willed daughter (Vanessa Hudgens), they set out to find the island, rescue its lone inhabitant and escape before seismic shockwaves force the island under the sea and bury its treasures forever.

TXT2CONNECT for up-to-date movie schedules, free sneak preview announcements and other special events and offers. It’s easy! Just text JEBTHEATER (for GatorTheater) or OCDNTHEATER (for Aerotheater) to phone number 30364. Admission to all movies is only $2 per person. Children ages two and younger are admitted free. Patrons 17 years of age or younger must be accompanied by a paying adult to attend all R rated movies. Doors open approximately one hour before showtimes. Schedule is subject to change. Payment for movie admission and concessions is by cash only.

The Vow Based on the true story of a newlywed couple recovering from an accident that puts the wife in a coma. She wakes up with severe memory loss and can’t remember any of her life with her new husband, so he has to fight to win her heart all over again. ThingstoDo/Entertainment/Movies


GET READY TO DISCOVER THE SECRETS OF AMALUR Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning System: PC, PS3, Xbox 360 Publisher: Electronic Arts Release Date: Feb. 7 ESRB Rating: Mature (Blood and Gore, Intense Violence, Suggestive Themes)

“Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning” is an epic singleplayer game – and the first chapter of a vast new fantasy universe – that sends players on a fast-paced journey to unlock the mysteries of Amalur, while redefining their hero’s destiny and the fate of the world. With more than 10 award nominations at its Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) debut in June 2011, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning




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immersive history and culture of the world; and industryicon Ken Rolston forges the expansive systems that RPG fans know and love. Reckoning has developed into something amazing and beyond my wildest dreams.” Set in an entirely new universe crafted by New York Times best-selling author R. A. Salvatore, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning is brought to life visually through the trademark visceral style of renowned artist and Spawn creator Todd McFarlane. With a sprawling explorable world and deep RPG gameplay at its core, Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning adds a new level of intense action combat to the genre and a one-of-a-kind advancement system as players unfold and evolve their destiny through constant character customization. For more information on Kingdoms of Amalur: Reckoning, please visit


The Flagship | | 02.09.12 | C5


Labonte opens up about personal life By Rick Minter Universal Uclick

As he rose through the NASCAR ranks, from being a helper on the race team of his big brother Terry to winning a Cup championship of his own, Bobby Labonte has often been reluctant to spend a lot of time talking about himself. Even as he won a Nationwide Series championship in 1991, and followed that with a Cup title in 2000, won 21 Cup races, 10 in Nationwide and another in the Truck Series along with the IROC title in 2001, he’s typically been the kind of driver who kept his head down, worked on his race cars and caused little controversy on or off the race track. He’s made some interesting career moves – some that worked out quite well and others that didn’t deliver the desired results. In 1994, he left his first full-time Cup car owner Bill Davis to drive for Joe Gibbs Racing, a move that produced immediate results in the form of three Cup wins in his first season with Gibbs and a Top-10 points finish. He left Gibbs after the 2005 season – and back-to-back winless years – to drive for Petty Enterprises. That pairing didn’t produce any victories, and last year, after two years driving for a hodgepodge of owners, he signed to drive the No. 47 Toyota at JTG-Daugherty Racing. He started the 2011 season with a fourth-place finish in the Daytona 500, but wound up 29th in the final points standings.

Courtesy of NASCAR Bobby Labonte (right) speaks with 2011 Daytona 500 winner Trevor Bayne during practice for the Subway Fresh Fit 500 at Phoenix International Raceway on Feb. 25, 2011.

As he’s preparing for another season behind the wheel of the No. 47 Camry, he spent some time talking to his team PR representatives about his personal life, giving answers that tell a lot about just what kind of person he is. For starters, he’s been married to his wife Donna since 1991, and they have two children, Tyler, 17, and Madison, 14. “Family is super important to me,” aid Labonte. “I make sure I do the best job I can, and at the same time, wish I can do better. It’s not easy with the travel schedules, but it’s something you have to work really hard at doing.” “We make sure we take 45 minutes at the table for dinner and we get caught up during that time. Right now, Madison is busy with her volley-

ball games and Tyler has his political views that are a hot topic we talk about a lot. Tyler’s also interested in getting his pilot’s license and he has already soloed. We also talk about colleges he is interested in at the moment.” Labonte also is big on giving back to the public. Like many Cup drivers, he has his own foundation, which works with various charities, and each year he hosts the Share the Road Memorial Ride, which honors cyclists killed riding their bikes. “My brothers-in-law introduced me to the sport,” said Labonte. “I watched it on television and then started riding bikes. I enjoyed the challenge, the enjoyment of the road, the enjoyment of seeing things and going to different places, and it’s a

neat activity that is good for exercise. It’s fun and clears your heart and soul at times if need be.” Labonte, who had his own race team at the beginning of his driving career, still owns and operates a race team. Bobby Labonte Racing fields dirt Late Model cars for Earl Pearson, Jr., who won national titles for Labonte in 2007, 2008 and 2009. “I always wanted to give back to grassroots racing because it’s where we all came from,” said Labonte. “It’s been good having the team. Earl and the guys have won a lot of races, a few championships and we’ve been able to have a fun time with the team.” “We had an off year last year, but we reorganized and got back to basics. We were building our own chassis and got off base. We’re looking forward to a better season.” The veteran Cup driver also owns a Red Mango yogurt and smoothie franchise in High Point, N.C. and he’s formed his own marketing agency, Breaking Limits. “I had an inkling to start a marketing agency and it’s something I want to do for years to come,” he said. “I see firsthand what we do for sponsors and the work that goes into public relations and marketing to make the program successful.” Labonte is an outdoors type, hunting big game when his schedule allows, but he’s also a big fan of technological devices, like iPhones and iPads. “I’ve always been a gadget guy and tech person,” he said. “I’ve always been on the cutting edge of something new, it seems like.”

Family is super important to me. I make sure I do the best job I can, and at the same time, wish I can do better.” - Bobby Labonte, veteran NASCAR driver who’s been married to his wife, Donna, since 1991 and has two children

■ schedule The 2012 NASCAR season gets underway Feb. 18 with the Budweiser Shootout. That is followed by the Gatorade Duels on Feb. 23, and then the Sprint Cup seasonopening Daytona 500 on Feb. 26.


Condit beats Diaz with technical display By Michael DiSanto

Anyone who read my pre-fight breakdown knows that I was seriously salivating over what appeared to be a surefire barnburner between Nick Diaz and Carlos Condit on Feb. 4. I really thought the matchup had all the necessary ingredients for a “Fight of the Year” performance. The UFC 143 main event certainly didn’t live up to the hype from an all-action standpoint, but that does not, in any way, detract from what was a near flawless performance by Condit. Condit committed to a game plan that consisted of sticking and moving with the use of constantly changing angles. He never varied from that attack, not even for a minute. Sure, Diaz trapped him a few times, forcing Condit to fight with his back against the cage. But those exchanges lasted only a few brief seconds before the new UFC interim welterweight champion circled away from the cage and resumed his tactical approach. Diaz pleaded with him over and over to stand and fight, using vitriolic trash talking, taunts with his hands at his side and doing just about everything else he could think of to try and goad his foe into a brawl. Condit never gave in to temptation, despite the fact that his natural inclination is to plant his feet and go to war with opponents. Anyone who believes that is easy to do should go back and watch Diaz’s career over the last four or five years. Every one of his opponents, except for British slugger Paul Daley, entered the cage with the same game plan. Only Condit was able to successfully implement it. While the end result wasn’t a “Fight of the Year” battle, it was a virtuoso tactical performance, arguably the best of 2012 so far.

Defend or not to defend Condit’s win over Diaz brought him a share of the championship that he so desperately coveted, but the belt comes with a dilemma. UFC President Dana White revealed after the fight that champion Georges St-Pierre is nowhere near being ready to resume full mixed martial arts training following ACL surgery. The current estimate is the champion will finish his rehabilitation sometime in June, which means he won’t likely return to competition until November, at the earliest. GSP’s health leaves Condit in a precarious

Courtesy of TNA TNA superstar Kurt Angle.

TNA Impact Wrestling Tour is coming to Constant Center Courtesy of UFC Carlos Condit (left) scored a unanimous decision victory over Nick Diaz at UFC 143 on Feb. 4 to claim the UFC interim welterweight championship.

position. He has to decide whether to wait for GSP and unify the belts in his next fight or take an optional defense while the Canadian standout is on the mend. That may seem like an easy choice, but this is anything but an easy decision. Let’s look at both sides of the issue. The argument in favor of waiting is an easy one to make. First and foremost, Condit knows that his title is only a placeholder until St-Pierre returns. He will forever be able to refer to himself as a UFC titlist, but not a champion, until he defeats St-Pierre – or GSP fails to return from his current injury exile. Thus, he hasn’t really accomplished his goal of reaching the pinnacle of the sport. Not yet anyway. Taking an interim fight in the unpredictable world of the UFC, where there is no such thing as a tune-up or keep-busy championship bout, creates a risk that he will never actually receive the opportunity to challenge for the true championship. Thus, the risk created by defending the interim belt outweighs the reward, in terms of building Condit’s legacy in the sport. Second, if there is ever a time to face St-Pierre, who is one of the best fighters on the planet, pound for pound, it is right after he returns from a major injury. He will have to deal with the dreaded cage rust when he returns. There is no

way that he will be as sharp in his first fight back as he was in his last bout. The issues caused by the time away from active training and actual fighting are compounded by the mental hurdle associated with getting over an ACL tear is no joke. It takes most athletes some reps in actual competition, even once fully healed and rehabilitated, to subconsciously believe that the knee is ready for game speed. St-Pierre, therefore, should have holes in his game that might not otherwise be present, if Condit faces him at any other point in their respective careers. Why risk blowing that opportunity, just to take an interim fight? The argument for taking an interim fight is also pretty straightforward. Any advantage that Condit has over St-Pierre due to the champion’s injury-forced exile is tempered by the interim champion self-exiling himself for a long period of time. Keep in mind that the longest layoff of Condit’s career is 269 days. If he fights GSP on Nov. 1, he will break his personal inactive mark by two days and there is no guarantee that the true champion will be ready by then. Any little setback in his rehabilitation or preparation could postpone the fight even further, which means cage rust will be just as big of a problem for Condit as it is GSP.

■ upcoming bouts UFC of Fuel TV 1 Feb. 15, Fuel TV Featured bouts: J. Ellenberger vs. Diego Sanchez Dave Herman vs. Stefan Struve Ronny Markes vs. Aaron Simpson Philip De Fries vs. Stipe Miocic T.J. Dillashaw vs. Walel Watson

UFC 144 Feb. 25, 10 p.m., PPV Featured bouts: Frankie Edgar vs. Ben Henderson Ryan Bader vs. Quinton Jackson Cheick Kongo vs. Mark Hunt Y. Akiyama vs. Jake Shields Joe Lauzon vs. Anthony Pettis

STRIKEFORCE March 3, 10 p.m., Showtime Featured bouts: Miesha Tate vs. Ronda Rousey Mike Kyle vs. Gegard Mousasi K.J. Noons vs. Josh Thomson Paul Daley vs. Kazuo Misaki Ronaldo Souza vs. Derek Brunson

UFC ON FX 2 March 3, FX and Fuel TV Featured bouts: Thiago Alves vs. M. Kampmann J. Benavidez vs. Y. Urushitani D. Johnson vs. Ian McCall Court McGee vs. C. Philippou ■ All cards are subject to change.


The superstars of Impact Wrestling, as seen on Spike TV, are invading the Constant Center for an unforgettable night of action, Feb. 10, at 7:30 p.m. The TNA Impact Wrestling World Tour live is an interactive experience that sends its craziest fans backstage to meet their favorite Impact Wrestling superstars. Appearing live on the night of the show will be Olympic Gold Medalist Kurt Angle, “The Charismatic Enigma” Jeff Hardy, “The Cowboy” James Storm, Impact Wrestling star Bobby Roode and the Lovely and Lethal TNA Knockouts. Wrestlers are subject to change. Fans can follow the ring announcer, Jeremy Borash on Twitter (@ JeremyBorash) to find out the secret “Tweet & Greet” locations of various superstars the day of the show. Fans that purchase a $50 ticket will receive a special “Meet and Greet” with the Impact Wrestling superstars at 5:30 p.m. the night of the show. Tickets are priced at $20, $35 and $50 and are available through, at the Constant Center box office, or charge-by-phone at (888) 3-COXTIX. Join the free Constant Center Cyber Club and receive advance notices and special offers to future events at www. You can also become a fan and follow the Ted Constant Center on Facebook at www. and on Twitter at for special contests and daily updates.




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2006 Toyota Landcruiser. White w/tan leather interior. Fully loaded. Very good condition. 138K miles. $26,500. Call 757-618-4039.




2007 GMC Sierra 2500 Crew Cab, 4x4, Turbo Diesel, price $7000, contact me at / 276-663-1712.


#51 ‘94 CHEVY S10 $3343 #31 ‘91 TOYOTA CAMRY $1999 #61 ‘99 CHRYSLER CIRRUS $3873 #51 ‘94 CHEVY S10 $3343 #52 ‘98 FORD RANGER $3909 #61 ‘99 CHRYSLER CIRRUS $3873 #02 ‘01 FORD TAURUS $4171 #52 ‘98 FORD RANGER $3909 #42 ‘02 FORD ESCAPE $4207 #02 ‘01 FORD TAURUS $4171



#42 ‘02 FORD ESCAPE $4207

#81 ‘97 HONDA PRELUDE $5903


$4308 #61 ‘05 DODGE DURANGO $5988 #81 ‘97 HONDA PRELUDE $5903 #31 ‘01 LEXUS IS 300 $6464 #61 ‘05 DODGE DURANGO $5988 #01 ‘03 DODGE CARAVAN $6701 #31 ‘01 LEXUS IS 300 $6464 #61 ‘00 TOYOTA CAMRY $6937 #01 ‘03 DODGE CARAVAN $6701 #31 ‘00 TOYOTA TUNDRA 4X4 $7317 #61 ‘00 TOYOTA CAMRY $6937 #61 ‘02 SURBARU FORESTER $7832 #31 ‘00 TOYOTA TUNDRA 4X4 $7317 #82 ‘99 TOYOTA TACOMA $7983 #61 ‘02 SURBARU FORESTER $7832 #81 ‘04 HONDA ODESSY $7993 #82 ‘99 TOYOTA TACOMA $7983 #92 ‘07 MAZDA 3 $8903 #81 ‘04 HONDA ODESSY $7993 #91 ‘04 NISSAN MAXIUM $9979 #92 ‘07 MAZDA 3 $8903 #61 ‘05 TOYOTA SIENNA $10988 #91 ‘04 NISSAN MAXIUM $9979 #81 ‘07 TOYOTA CAMRY XLE $10999 #61 ‘05 TOYOTA SIENNA $10988 OIL & FILTER CHANGES & STATE INSPECTIONS FREE FOR LIFE!

#81 ‘07 TOYOTA CAMRY XLE $10999







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Chest pain, discomfort, pressure or squeezing, like there’s a ton of weight on you • Shortness of breath • Nausea • Light-headedness or sudden dizziness • Unusual upper body pain, or discomfortin one or both arms, back, shoulder, neck, jaw or upper part of the stomach • Breaking out in a cold sweat If you experience any one of these symptoms, don’t make excuses for them. Make the Call. Don’t Miss a Beat. To learn more, visit

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Religious Services JEB Little Creek Chapel JEB FORT STORY Chapel ROMAN CATHOLIC Mass schedule: 5 p.m., Sat. (fulfills Sunday obligation) 9 a.m. & 12:15 p.m. , Sun. Fellowship: 10 a.m., Sun. Choir practice: 6 p.m., Tues. Confessions: 3:30 - 4:30 p.m., Sat.

ROMAN CATHOLIC Mass schedule: 9 a.m., Sun. Bible study: 9:30 a.m., Tues. PROTESTANT Worship service:11 a.m., Sun. Bible study: Noon, Wed.

Naval Station Norfolk PROTESTANT Sun. School : 9 a.m. Sun. (Ages 4 - Adult) AWANA / Children’s Church : 10 a.m., Sun. (Ages 4 - 10) Worship service:10:30 a.m., Sun. Fellowship: 11:30 a.m., Sun. Coffeehouse: 6 p.m., Sun. Bible Study/ Band Practice: 5 p.m., Mon. PWOC: 9:30 a.m., Wed Choir practice: 6 p.m., Wed.

LATTER DAY SAINTS Worship: 11:30 a.m., Sun. (Chapel Annex Classroom 1) Meeting: 7 p.m., Wed. (Chapel Annex Classroom 4) * Nursery care is available Sundays, 10 a.m. - Noon

NWS YORKTOWN CHAPEL Nelson Chapel, 1868 Lafayette Rd., Newport News

ROMAN CATHOLIC Our Lady of Victory Chapel Mass schedule: 11:45 a.m., Wed. 10 a.m., Sun.. PROTESTANT David Adams Memorial Chapel Worship services: 10:30 a.m., Sun. Jewish SABBATH Commodore Levy Chapel (Second Floor Bldg. C7) Sabbath: 730 p.m., Fri. (Sabbath Fellowship Oneg Shabbot Follows) ISLAMIC WORSHIP Masjid al Da’wah 2nd Floor (Bldg. C-7) Services: 1:30 p.m., Fri. Chapels are open daily for prayer.


ROMAN CATHOLIC Mass schedule: 11:30 a.m., ROMAN CATHOLIC Mon. - Thurs. Mass schedule: 8:30 a.m., Sun. 9 a.m. & 12:15 p.m., Sun. PROTESTANT Worship service:10:30 a.m., Sun.


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PROTESTANT Sun. school: 9:15 a.m., Sun. Worship service:10:40 a.m., Sun. Bible study/ 11 a.m., Wed.

ROMAN CATHOLIC Confessions: 4:15 p.m. - Sat. Mass Schedule: 5 p.m. - Sat.

If you thought actress Jane was incredible, I guess you would be really Fonda her. PROTESTANT Worship service: 9 a.m. - Sun.

contactinfo Norfolk, call 444-7361. JEB Little Creek-Fort Story, call 462-7427. Yorktown, call 887-4711. Oceana, call 433-2871. Dam Neck Annex, call 492-6602. For stories from the Chaplain’s Corner, visit


A HOMECOMING TO REMEMBER. REWARDS YOU WON’T FORGET. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Julio Rivera/Released

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Profile for Military News

Flagship Feb. 9, 2012  

Serving Hampton Roads Navy Family

Flagship Feb. 9, 2012  

Serving Hampton Roads Navy Family