Sunday, 18 October 2009


18 October 2009 - October has been a busy month for STOUT. After enjoying a bit of time to relax and take some leave following our return from deployment the crew came together again on October 7th to return to our "normal" work routine. I'm not sure there is a definition for a normal week in the Navy, but we are going full speed ahead again with warfare training, preventive and corrective maintenance, preservation, physical training, medical and dental visits, schools and watchstanding.

Back on the first of the month we promoted our Main Propulsion Assistant from CWO2 to CWO3. A Warrant Officer is someone who has came up through the Enlisted Ranks and specializes in a specific field. In MPA's case he specializes in surface ship engineering. As you can see Warrant Officers wear one collar device depicting their specialty (in this case a propeller) and one signifying their rank. STOUT has the good fortune to have three Warrant Officers in the Wardroom. Congratulations MPA on your promotion.

One of the things you will also notice in the photos with this post are the camouflage uniforms many of the crew are wearing. These are the new Navy Working Uniforms (NWUs) and we are making the switch to them this month.

We also had the opportunity to witness the re-enlistment of our Botswainmate Chief. You can see the picture of BMC and OPS on the messdecks during the re-enlistment ceremony. BMC is one of our great deckplate leaders and it was an honor to be at his ceremony. For those of you who are Naval History buffs, Botswainmate is the oldest rate in the Navy, dating back to the first days the Navy over 234 years ago.

Speaking of History, October is also the Navy's Birthday month. To celebrate we had a small commemoration where we read the Secretary of the Navy's message to the fleet and cut the birthday cake. As is tradition the oldest and youngest crew members are selected to cut the cake. This year the honors went to Master Chief Campbell and Seaman Johnson. (I know it's hard to tell, but Master Chief is the older of the two!)