Military News

Friday, February 03, 2012

Face of Defense: Curiosity Drives ‘Ghost Hunter’

By Scott Prater
50th Space Wing Public Affairs

WASHINGTON, Feb. 3, 2012 – When Air Force Capt. Stan Maczek was a young child, he responded to frightening sights and sounds in the dark like most of us: He pulled the covers up over his head and hoped the event would pass quickly. Nowadays, Maczek sprints enthusiastically toward such events.

He's not sure what to call himself -- ghost hunter, spirit seeker, paranormal investigator -- but he's sure this is the most exciting hobby he's discovered yet. His fellow paranormal investigator, Josh Burger, thinks the same way. He also plays golf and the guitar, but paranormal investigating has pretty much captured his attention during the past six months.

It all started last year when Burger, a contractor here, mentioned his parents owned a haunted home nearby in Calhan, Colo.

"Our investigations began recently, but I've been fascinated by this phenomenon since I was a child," said Maczek, who works with the 1st Space Operations Squadron. "I grew up in a haunted house in Maryland. My parents used to hear voices in their bedroom. I figured if just one of them heard them we could explain that as some sort of schizophrenia, but not both of them.

“My father was a U.S. Army research lab scientist and very skeptical,” Maczek added. “He didn't believe in paranormal stuff -- until this happened."

Another part of the hobby Maczek enjoys is performing research. Prompted by the strange events that occurred at his house in Maryland, he managed to find some history on the property.

"The house was relatively new, built by an original owner who employed subcontractors," Maczek said. "As it turns out, he had some financial trouble and didn't pay the subcontractors.”

Maczek said the house fell into disrepair, noting his parents then bought it at an auction.

He relayed his story to Burger, who responded by relaying his own story of his parents' home in Calhan, and of the strange events that were happening at his current home. The investigators researched both homes and found nothing eventful, but the process spiked their curiosity.

That's when Burger purchased some equipment, including an infrared motion-sensor camera.

"I kept noticing this shadow in my basement, so I turned the camera on that spot and left it on overnight," Burger said. "The next day I found the camera had captured the strange shadowy mass and it's something I can't really explain. Since then we started making plans to investigate other places."

A ghost hunter’s tools are a gadget enthusiast's dream, the duo said.

The investigators carry an electro-magnetic field detector, what some folks call a ghost detector, but Maczek said it just reveals whether an electro-magnetic field is present or not. They also use Burger's infrared camera, which presents a green-tinted image and allows the investigators to shoot in dark rooms.

"People may be familiar with the [infrared] image because that's what they use on those television ghost [-hunting] shows," Maczek said.

While Burger's motivation for investigating is to debunk those types of TV shows, Maczek said his motivations stem from his curiosity, his psychology education and his religious leanings.

"I'm attempting to answer life's big questions, but with my psychology background I don't just believe something at face value; I've got to have evidence," Maczek said. "I've got to see it and record it and I've got to be able to show it to somebody and say there is a face or a body or something there. That's kind of the challenge. Nobody has really found that, yet."

Both admit that their reactions to strange events run the gamut.

"We get mixed reactions in most cases," Maczek said. "First, I explain I'm not crazy and that I'm as sane as the next person, but that I'm just trying to investigate and see what I can find out. Even though I'm in the Air Force, I'm in no way associated with the Air Force or [Department of Defense], as far as this investigating goes. It's just my own fascination."

Sometimes, Maczek and Burger said, they are warmly received and other times they are not. Many people remain skeptical, they said, but most often agree to let the paranormal investigators go ahead with their research.

"We've had only a few investigations so far that haven't revealed much, but we're planning to visit locations on Fort Carson and the Pioneer's Museum downtown," Maczek said. "Word-of-mouth has spun around my neighborhood, too, so I've done some investigations there."

Burger finds the proposition of investigating buildings where people have reported activity extremely exciting and even plans to bring his teenage son along for upcoming investigations.

In the meantime, Maczek's squadron commander has sent well wishes to the pair.

"I encourage our entire 1st SOPS team to find ways to get involved with our local community to make a positive impact," said. Air Force Lt. Col. Mike Manor, the 1st SOPS commander. "Although some people may be skeptical about this type of research, I'm sure there are many within our community who are equally interested in Maczek's work.”

Volk Field receives second straight Air Force excellence award

By Tech. Sgt. Jon LaDue
Wisconsin National Guard Public Affairs Office

Air Force officials recently announced the Volk Field Combat Readiness Training Center as one of eight units nation-wide to earn the Air Force Organizational Excellence Award (AFOEA).

This is the second consecutive AFOEA for the CRTC and the fourth in unit history.

"Having the Volk Field Combat Readiness Training Center announced as a recipient of the Air Force Organizational Excellence Award is a worthy tribute to the dedicated Airmen and civilians that are giving their very best effort each and every day," said Col. Gary Ebben, Volk Field commander.

Maj. Gen. Don Dunbar, adjutant general of Wisconsin, expressed his gratitude for those efforts.

"I couldn't be prouder of the men and women of Volk Field," Dunbar said. "Their contributions to the 'Total Force' and 'Joint Training' concepts serves as a force multiplier. The CRTC at Volk Field has an enduring legacy of excellence – this is the latest chapter."

This AFOEA recognizes the CRTC for meritorious service from Oct 2009 through September 2011.

And deservedly so – the CRTC hosted training for 475 units - encompassing Army and Air National Guard, Air Force and Air Force reserve, and non-Department of Defense units. Volk Field also hosted numerous multi-agency, large scale exercises, including Patriot, Northern Lightning and the international NATO exercise Ramstein Rover.

Volk Field host one of the only Air National Guard bases that maintains its own airfield and control tower. This allowed the CRTC to schedule and monitor more than 4,500 sorties in over 12,000 square miles of Special Use Airspace over central Wisconsin.

In a memorandum announcing the awardees, Lt. Gen. Harry M. Wyatt III, director, Air National Guard, spoke to the meritorious service of each of the eight units.

"The dedication and commitment of the members of these organizations enable the Air National Guard to fulfill its commitment to the missions of peacekeeping, humanitarian relief, domestic improvement, and most important of all – Defense of America," Wyatt said.

The AFOEA is awarded to units who are unique, unnumbered organizations that operate or perform missions like a numbered unit would Volk Field won the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award in 2007 but National Guard Bureau determined the CRTC was more appropriately placed in the AFOEA category.

"The track record of accomplishments doesn’t just happen ... it is built with hard work," Ebben said. "These professionals are as fine a group as I have ever had the pleasure to work with in my career. "

USS Simpson Concludes Visit to Casablanca

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Felicito Rustique, Navy Public Affairs Support Element-East Detachment Europe

CASABLANCA, Morocco (NNS) -- Guided-missile frigate USS Simpson (FFG 56) and senior staff members from U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa concluded a three-day port visit of training, band engagements, and senior staff talks in Casablanca, Feb. 2.

During the visit, Simpson conducted visit, board, search and seizure training with Royal Moroccan Navy personnel and received a tour of the Royal Moroccan Navy vessel Tarek Ben Zayid. Staff members from U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa met with senior leaders from the Royal Moroccan Navy to strengthen maritime partnerships, while members from the Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe Band conducted two community service projects at a girls' orphanage and boys' center in the city.

Rear Adm. Kenneth Norton, deputy chief of staff for Strategy, Resources, and Plans at U.S. Naval Forces Europe-Africa, along with his staff and the crew of Simpson, hosted the U.S. ambassador to Morocco, Samuel Kaplan, his wife and his staff, and top commanders from the Royal Moroccan Navy and Army, honoring the relationship between Morocco and their U.S. partners.

Royal Moroccan Army Col. Mohammed Amharouch said he was happy to have the Simpson crew visit his city.

"It's good to form bridges between our two nations," said Amharouch. "More visits, like the Simpson's, will help our navies and countries move together into the future with vision."

Cmdr. Leonard Milliken, USS Simpson commanding officer, commented on the events and training the two countries completed during their time in Casablanca.

"Today was a great day," said Milliken. "We had tours where we provided training aboard to members of the Royal Moroccan Navy and some of our Sailors visited and boarded a Moroccan vessel as well. Our visit to Morocco has been a success."

Norton also spoke to the guests by offering praise to the Simpson's crew and stressing the importance of partnership between the U.S. and countries like Morocco.

"I'd like to conclude [the evening] with this thought: maritime security allows for economic opportunity," said Norton. "And economic opportunity allows for prosperity, and I think that's in all our best interest."

USS Simpson, homeported out of Mayport, Fla., is currently conducting theater security cooperation and maritime security operations in the Naval Forces Africa area of responsibility.

DOD Begins Prorating Imminent Danger Pay

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON  – Service members now will receive imminent danger pay only for days they actually spend in hazardous areas, Pentagon officials said here today.

The change, which took effect yesterday, was included in the 2012 National Defense Authorization Act, which President Barack Obama signed into law Dec. 31.

“Members will see the prorated amount in their Feb. 15 pay records,” Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. John Kirby said.

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,” Kirby said.

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,” Pentagon spokeswoman Eileen Lainez said.

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.

‘Game Day’ Events Highlight Similarities between Service Members, NFL Players

By Robyn Mincher, DCoE Strategic Communications

While the careers of NFL football players and service members might seem different, the Real Warriors Campaign highlights that in fact, they may be similar. Throughout January, former NFL players visited military installations across the country, speaking with service members and their families about common reintegration challenges, as well as the resources available to address them. During the events players, service members and families shared heart-to-heart conversations, ate football fare together and cheered on their favorite teams.

These “Game Day” events were developed in 2010 through a partnership with the campaign and the NFL Players Association to encourage service members to reach out when times are tough. Many of the former players told their own stories of having difficulty transitioning out of the NFL, such as former Houston Oilers wide receiver Chris Sanders during his visit to Fort Carson, Colo.

“I went through those struggles,” Sanders told FOX21 News. “I went through the depression. I went through the doubt … and I didn’t want any help. But, until I had to go out and to seek help, that’s when things started to change. That’s why I truly believe in the Real Warriors Campaign.”

Players shared Real Warriors resources, such as tip sheets, videos of military members reaching out for help, and the campaign’s new podcasts. The Real Warriors, Real Advice weekly podcast series feature warriors, veterans and military families highlighting the importance of maintaining psychological resilience and seeking help when there are concerns.

“It's OK to have problems. But we shouldn't [only] focus on the problem, we need to look for the solution,” said former New England Patriots running back Tony Collins at the Fort Bragg, N.C., event. “I want to encourage each of you, when you need help, reach out. It’s not a sign of weakness; it’s a sign of strength.”

The message seemed to resonate with service members.

”You just got to keep your head up, like they said,” Alexander Walter, an injured soldier attending the Fort Carson event, told FOX21 News. “Ask for help. Don't be afraid.”

Along with Fort Bragg and Fort Carson, events were held at Fort Drum, N.Y., Camp Pendleton, Calif., and more recently, Marine Corps Base Quantico, Va.

“There are many similarities between the two professions: emphasis on physical fitness, the work preparing for a game or battle, the energy of being a member of the team or unit to accomplish a mission, and the transition into a new environment,” said Dr. Monique Moore, Defense Centers of Excellence for Psychological Health and Traumatic Brain Injury (DCoE) psychologist. “Hearing these players say ‘I struggle with things too, and it’s OK to reach out and get support’ is a really powerful message.”

The Real Warriors Campaign is a DCoE initiative to promote building resilience, facilitating recovery and supporting reintegration of returning service members, veterans and their families. The campaign encourages help-seeking behavior among the military community.

NAVSEA Achieves Surface Ship Maintenance Process Milestone

From Surface Maintenance Engineering Planning Program

PEARL HARBOR (NNS) -- USS Paul Hamilton (DDG 60) completed a 20-week selected restricted availability Jan. 27, becoming the first surface ship to complete a shipyard availability using a new maintenance process.

The process, known as the Baseline Availability Work Package (BAWP)/Availability Work Package (AWP), is designed to ensure each ship receives all required maintenance at the correct point in its life cycle to improve operational availability and reduced maintenance costs over the life of the ship.

The BAWP identifies and mandates all required lifecycle assessments and maintenance for each ship. The BAWP is then used to create a work package, the AWP, for each specific availability.

As part of NAVSEA's effort to sustain the current surface fleet, the Surface Maintenance Engineering Planning Program (SURFMEPP), is phasing in the BAWP/AWP process throughout the entire surface force to support meeting each surface ship's expected service life.

"I'm very pleased to report this successful milestone, a key step in the maturation of the end-to-end process," said SURFMEPP Commanding Officer Capt. Michael L. Malone. "This new process ensures each ship receives the critical maintenance it needs and steers the fleet toward the most effective use of its maintenance dollars."

Implementation of the BAWP/AWP process in planning availabilities is a critical new component of the fleet maintenance program, and is essential to ensuring each surface ship reaches its expected service life. As of February 2012, 65 ships are utilizing the new process, with an eventual goal of 150 ships by fiscal year 2014.

SURFMEPP, a field activity of the Naval Sea Systems Command, is responsible for managing the long-term maintenance requirements for ships in the surface fleet.

NMCB 74 Project: Great for Naval Air Station, Better for Training Seabees

By Chief Mass Communication Specialist Scott B. Boyle, 25th Naval Construction Regiment Public Affairs

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (NNS) -- Training to be a Seabee requires more than studying manuals or sitting in a classroom. To excel in all aspects of construction, today's Seabees need real world, hands-on experience. The Construction Training Exercise (CTX) is designed for that very purpose.

Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 74, from Gulfport, Miss., has a team of 21 Seabees building a boat ramp to support Naval Air Station (NAS) Corpus Christi, Texas. The homeport project gives Seabees an opportunity to maintain their core construction skills outside of a classroom, while also improving quality of life conditions at the base.

"It gives them a sense of ownership and they are enjoying what they are doing," said project Assistant Officer-in-Charge Senior Chief Construction Electrician Raquel Jeffers. "It gets them out of the classroom and they get the hands-on experience. To see them work through the challenges is really rewarding," she said.

CTX projects give Seabees on-the-job training, while also exposing them to the elements outside the rigid controls of the classroom. Steelworker 3rd Class Alan Moiles said the boat ramp project is complex but it gives the young Seabees a great opportunity to improve their skills.

"It's very different since we don't get the mud and the water in the classroom," he said. "I've done rebar work before, but nothing like this."

In the classroom, even during the labs in class, everything is controlled said Construction Electrician 2nd Class Joshua Guerreiro, the project crew leader.

"The things we have encountered out here, building the boat ramp, the demolition, the rain and mud, it has made us think outside the box and come up with things they don't teach you in the classroom to overcome obstacles."

Jeffers said learning to adapt and overcome environmental changes, while still completing a project, is a skill all Seabees need. The different skills needed to build the boat ramp also translate to projects Seabees take on during deployments, such as building schools and airfields. Practicing those skills during homeport projects makes the Seabees more efficient when they are in harsh, deployed environments.

"Most everybody on this crew has come out of the desert, so we're good at building Southwest Asia (SWA) huts," Guerreiro said. "This project will give us a lot of rebar work, a lot of concrete work, things we have never done before and it will really expand our skills."

NAS Corpus Christi Public Works Officer, Lt. Cmdr. Craig Clutts, sees the project as a great training opportunity for the battalion Seabees.

"In my two years with NMCB 74, back in 2006-07, we were deployed to Iraq, Afghanistan and Guam," Clutts said. "We had three personnel out of 600 trained to oversee quality control of overhead concrete pours, the type of work these Seabees are executing on this base today."

The quality of life improvement on the base is also a big part of the CTX concept since these projects, while giving the Seabees an invaluable training experience, also leave something behind the customers can use.

Clutts said the base on Corpus Christi has lost several units over the past few years and this boat ramp will be extremely important in supporting base operations and Morale, Welfare and Recreation's mission of supporting the service members stationed there.

"This project will revitalize MWR for the base," Clutts said.

Since the project began, Jan. 4, 2012, people working on NAS Corpus Christi have been clear in their appreciation for the Seabees' efforts.

"Everyone knows us now," Moiles said. "They see the uniform, and there aren't a lot of Seabees here, so they are really appreciative of what we do."

"Every day we get praise out here, people saying 'Seabees, we can't thank you enough,'" Jeffers added. "It is a big morale boost."

The NAS Corpus Christi boat ramp project, scheduled for completion May 2012, is just one of several CTXs planned or ongoing at bases throughout the continental United States.

Partnership benefits New Hampshire Guard, El Salvador

By Army National Guard Sgt. 1st Class Jon Soucy
National Guard Bureau

SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador  – New Hampshire Guard senior leaders recently spent several days here meeting with key military leaders to strengthen the state and nation’s pairing in the National Guard State Partnership Program.

The SPP builds relationships between the National Guard in the states and territories and partnered nations worldwide. New Hampshire’s relationship with El Salvador recently passed the 12-year mark and will continue to grow, state Guard leaders said.

New Hampshire’s adjutant general, Air Force Maj. Gen. William Reddel III, credits the SPP relationship as one of the reasons why El Salvador troops served alongside U.S. troops in both Iraq and Afghanistan.

“I truly believe that one of the reasons why El Salvador went to Iraq … was because of [the New Hampshire Guard],” said Reddel. “They are the only country in this hemisphere that has done that.”

The adjutant general envisions growth in New Hampshire SPP activities.

“The hope is that we may be able to take on a second country, but have a tri-lateral agreement and that all three countries would be working together to solve problems,” Reddel said. “Other states have done it; New Hampshire can do it.”

Meanwhile, Reddel said New Hampshire and El Salvador’s relationship has matured and deepened.

“When we look at engagements, they were pretty much ‘events’ in the very beginning,” Reddel said. “As we kept on moving forward we turned ‘events’ into ‘outcomes.’ And now, it’s all about outcomes.”

Those outcomes, said Reddel, have included partnered training and a greater understanding of ways the U.S. and El Salvador can work together.

“With SPP you find it’s all about relationships,” he said. “It’s all about the constant relationship that we have with the country and with their members in the military.”

The relationship has grown to encompass more than military-to-military exchanges. New Hampshire students from a local high school partnered with a school in El Salvador and have had exchanges between both teachers and students, said Reddel, who added that interaction came about because of the structure of the Guard.

 “Given the fact that we are a community-based force, we can reach out into the community to find those relationships that we can take down to El Salvador,” he said.

“Every year we alternate with the Salvadorans – one year we’ll go down there, the next year they’ll come here,” he said.

During the recent visit, the New Hampshire delegation not only met with military leadership to discuss future endeavors, but they also spent time observing aspects of army basic training and air force pilots and ground crews as they performed their mission, and they received briefings on Salvadoran military response to severe flooding in the country in November.

“It’s a great opportunity for us to expand opportunities to exchange ideas, to exchange education and to exchange things that make both the United States and El Salvador better,” said U.S. Air Force Brig. Gen. Carolyn Protzmann, assistant adjutant general for Air with the New Hampshire Guard.

One of those areas is international and homeland security.

“Our relationship with El Salvador helps to strengthen the security and security cooperation, and it puts the National Guard in the forefront of the homeland defense and homeland security mission,” said Protzmann. “And that’s where we need to be.”

The ability to do that comes back to relationship building.

“By coming down here and being exposed to this culture, exposed to the challenges that the Salvadoran people are up against, helps us to be better informed on how we should act and react as global citizens,” said Army Brig. Gen. Craig Bennett, assistant adjutant general for Army with the New Hampshire National Guard.

And that means long-term success.

“In the long term, if we need to call on the El Salvadorans for their help in times of need or vice-versa, existing relationships allow us to do that much more effectively,” Bennett said.

MCPON Visits Sailors aboard Constitution

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Thomas L. Rosprim, Office of the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy

CHARLESTOWN, Mass. (NNS) -- Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) spoke to Sailors stationed aboard USS Constitution Jan. 31, as they prepare for War of 1812 Bicentennial celebrations this year.

"Whenever I visit Constitution I am always so motivated by the awesome Sailors stationed here," said MCPON(SS/SW) Rick D. West. "You are all truly outstanding representatives of our Navy."

Currently, Constitution Sailors are set to participate in seven Fleet Weeks and five parades for War of 1812 commemorations and the ship's Sailors are ready.

"This is a monumental occasion for our Navy and our Nation," said West. "If you're not familiar with how the War of 1812 shaped both our country and its high regard for seapower, I encourage you to read up on it. I'm convinced you'll be as enthusiastic about giving it the proper recognition as our senior leaders are."

During MCPON's visit, he shot a video to promote War of 1812 events and climbed the ship's center mast.

"I have been here several times but I have never had the opportunity to climb the mast, and this will remain a great memory for me," said West. "When I see these young Sailors climbing so fast and swift, it is a great compliment to the training and safety found, not only here, but throughout our Navy."

MCPON spoke to the Sailors about where the Navy is today and complimented the command on its dedication to preserving history. At 214 years old, Constitution is the oldest commissioned warship afloat.

"I honestly couldn't have asked for a better opportunity," said Aviation Electronics Technician 3rd Class Brian Pickett. "One of my best experiences here was actually being stationed up on the foremast of the ship - it is sort of like 'Pirates of the Caribbean' if you will. Jack Sparrow up there holding onto the lines, seeing the horizon in the distance as we set off from the harbor here; there is no substitute for that. I look forward to what is yet to come."

"I love being on board USS Constitution," said Damage Controlman Fireman Ashley Fairfax. "Since I have been here I have grown as a Sailor; a disciplined Sailor for the United States Navy. I am proud to say I am a part of the most powerful Navy in the world."

Look for MCPON's upcoming video on his Facebook page, www.facebook.com/mcpon, and for more information on the War of 1812 and the planned festivities to commemorate the 200th anniversary, visit www.ourflagwasstillthere.org/.

USFF Requests Volunteers for Afloat Forward Staging Base

From U.S. Fleet Forces Public Affairs

NORFOLK (NNS) -- U.S. Fleet Forces Command (USFF) began requesting volunteers from USFF activities to man the soon-to-be redesignated USS Ponce (LPD 15) for operations in the U.S. Central Command (USCENTCOM) Area of Responsibility (AOR), Feb. 2.

USS Ponce will serve as an Afloat Forward Staging Base (AFSB), instead of its orginal plan to decommission in March. Ponce will deploy this summer in order to fulfill a long-standing request for an AFSB in the USCENTCOM AOR.

According to Capt. Cynthia Womble, USFF assistant deputy chief of staff for Fleet Personnel Development and Allocation, this is a great opportunity for some hard-charging Sailors to be on the leading edge of a new program.

"This really is an excellent opportunity for Sailors step out of their comfort zone and be a part of something really unique. The AFSB is a concept that has been floated for quite some time now and the Sailors who volunteer for this mission are going to be the ones who have the greatest impact on the future of this program," said Womble. "In today's very competitive environment this type of assignment could make a difference in a Sailor's career options and promotion opportunities."

As AFSB(I) 15 (I for "Interim"), the warship will be commanded by a Navy captain and manned by a combined crew of officers, enlisted Sailors, and Military Sealift Command (MSC) government civilian mariners. Ponce will remain homeported at Naval Station Norfolk, with volunteer officers and Sailors serving on the ship under Individual Augmentees (IA) orders. Tour lengths will be 12 months.

While deployed, Ponce will support Mine Counter Measure and Coastal Patrol (PC) ships, and aircraft operations with the capability to support multiple mission packages as detachments when requested by USCENTCOM and/or U.S. 5th Fleet.

Commands with interested Sailors and officers should reference USFF message 250920Z JAN 12 REQUEST FOR VOLUNTEERS TO MAN AFLOAT FORWARD STAGING BASE. A link to the message is contained on the USFF website www.cffc.navy.mil.

Selected Sailors will serve a one-year tour aboard and receive IA credit for their tour. They will be eligible for Sea Pay and family separation allowance in addition to other special pays appropriate to duties in their operating location.

The majority of the Navy crew will be filled with, but not limited to, information systems technicians (IT), electronics technicians (ET), fire controlmen (FC), operations specialists (OS), gunner's mates (GM) and seamen.

For screening purposes, volunteers are required to satisfactorily screen for sea duty.

Nominee information is required via the Individual's Chain of Command to USFF NLT 9 Feb. 2012.

For more news from U.S. Fleet Forces Command, visit www.cffc.navy.mil, or follow us on Facebook at Facebook.com/usfleetforces.