Military News

Sunday, April 25, 2010

NNMC Promotes Rowing for Wounded Warriors

By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Timothy Wilson, National Naval Medical Center Public Affairs

April 25, 2010 - BETHESDA, Md. (NNS) -- Wounded Warriors at the National Naval Medical Center (NNMC) trained on rowing machines in Bethesda, Md., April 23 to rehabilitate their injuries.

The rowing machines were provided free of charge from the Capital Adaptive Rowing Program, a volunteer military group who works with veterans from NNMC and Walter Reed Army Medical Center (WRAMC), as well as the U.S. Paralympic Team.

"It's a great way for the [Wounded Warriors] to get out of their zone and try something new, instead of sitting around and only talking about their injuries," said Musician 1st Class Patrick Johnson, director of coaching at Capital Adaptive Rowing Program. "It's so much better than some alternatives like smoking."

The program is catered to individuals with disabilities that include spinal cord injuries, amputations and visual and cognitive impairments, not only to rehabilitate and heal, but also to decrease stress and anxiety.

"It's the best exercise ever and anyone can do it," said Marine Sgt. Adam Sanchez, a Wounded Warrior at NNMC. "Due to my injury, I can't run, but I can do this."

The rowing machine provides a low-impact exercise. Despite having an injury affecting Sanchez's lower leg, participation is still possible.

"The U.S. Paralympic Military Program is scouting him to join their team," said Johnson, regarding Sanchez's ability at rowing.

"We have seen that the program also brings out their social side as well," said Johnson. "We see it with not only the [veterans], but also with kids and adults because they are curious and start talking."

The change in the Wounded Warriors is drastic, said Johnson. When first starting the program, many of them were shy and did not want to talk; however, positive personality traits emerge every time they train.

"There is a need for this, for our Soldiers, Sailors and Marines, because they are real people," said Johnson. "This takes away from the separation they may have in their lives [because of their injuries] and brings them closer to other people."

Heather Campbell, Paralympic Military Program site coordinator for NNMC and WRAMC, works closely with the Capital Adaptive Rowing Program to improve the lives of the veterans by helping them to compete in national competitions.

"We want to get more people interested and more people on a level to compete," said Campbell. "We want to help those people make it to the next level."

The program has been expanding since 2004 with corroboration between the Paralympic Military Program and Capital Adaptive Rowing Program with a primary focus on the veterans, said Campbell.

"We're trying to work together to make sure we support [Capital Adaptive] so they can continue to support the people we want to help," said Campbell.

NSAWC Holds Change of Command Ceremony

By Chief Mass Communication Specialist Chris Shimana, Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center Public Affairs

April 25, 2010 - FALLON, Nev. (NNS) -- Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center (NSAWC) held a change of command ceremony on board Naval Air Station (NAS) Fallon, Nev., April 23.

Rear Adm. John "Fozzie" Miller relieved Rear Adm. Mark "MRT" Fox as commander of NSAWC.

Military and civilian dignitaries, NSAWC personnel, family and friends were present to bid farewell to Fox and welcome Miller and his family to NAS Fallon and the Fallon community. Miller is the ninth two-star admiral to command NSAWC since its inception in 1996.

The event's guest speaker was Vice Adm. Thomas J. Kilcline Jr., commander, Naval Air Forces.

"Both of these men are amazing officers and highly regarded throughout naval aviation, and I feel very strongly that their leadership is just what we need." said Kilcline. "Mark has made significant contributions, and under Fozzie's watchful eye the training provided here will ensure that naval aviation remains the premier combat ready air force in the world."

Kilcline touched on several of Fox's accomplishments while serving as NSAWC commander, of particular note was Fox's contribution to current combat operations.

"Under his strong leadership, NSAWC has met the reality of strike warfare with extraordinary accomplishments." said Kilcline. "He has assured the realistic state of the art training opportunities continue to be provided to our deploying air wings."

Following his speech, Kilcline presented Fox the Legion of Merit Award for his exceptional service as NSAWC commander.

During his speech, Fox touched on many issues facing today's Navy, as well as the importance of being partners within the communities in which we live.

"Here in Fallon, I think we've got it right," said Fox. "The relationship between the military and the local community is as strong as any place that I can think of and is a model for the rest of the nation to emulate."

Following his remarks, Fox was joined on stage by retired Adm. Timothy Keating, who presented the Adm. Timothy J. Keating Leadership Award to Cmdr. Dan Cheever, for exhibiting uncompromising integrity, sustained professional excellence and exemplary leadership during his tour at NSAWC.

Fox has been nominated for appointment to the rank of vice admiral and assignment as commander, U.S. Naval Forces, Central Command and commander, 5th Fleet, in Bahrain.

NSAWC is the center of excellence for naval aviation training and tactics development in integrated strike warfare, weapons employment, irregular warfare and maritime and overland air superiority.

Obama Commemorates Elbe River Meeting

American Forces Press Service

April 25, 2010 - President Barack Obama and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev issued a joint statement today to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the meeting of Soviet and American troops at Elbe River during World War II. Here is the statement in its entirety:

April 25, 2010 marks the 65th anniversary of the legendary meeting of Soviet and American troops at the Elbe River, which became a striking symbol of the brotherhood-in-arms between our nations during World War II.

We pay tribute to the courage of those who fought together to liberate Europe from fascism. Their heroic feat will forever remain in the grateful memory of mankind.

The atmosphere of mutual trust and shared commitment to victory, which accompanied the historic handshake at the Elbe, is especially called for today when Russia and the United States are building a partnership for the sake of a stable and prosperous world. We are convinced that, acting in the "spirit of the Elbe" on an equitable and constructive basis, we can successfully tackle any tasks facing our nations and effectively deal with the challenges of the new millennium.