A very appreciative group gathered to honor the Sailors of the Quarter from the Naval Weapons Station, Seal Beach, at the regular monthly meeting of the Grampaw Pettibone Squadron of the Association of Naval Aviation at the Elks Lodge in Garden Grove held on Thursday, Feb. 13.
GPS recognized the outstanding sailors with Certificates of Appreciation and other gifts including beautiful plaques from the United States Automobile Association. In addition, the sailors were given gift certificates and coupons from the following local restaurants: Avila’s El Ranchito Mexican Restaurant, Chick-fil-A, Coaches Sports Grill, Finbars Italian Restaurant, Hennessey’s Tavern, The Crab Cooker (Tustin), California Pizza Kitchen (Rossmoor), Santa Fe Importers, and O’Malley’s On Main.
Sailors of the Quarter from NWSSB were: Senior Sailor: MA1 Nicholas Merced; Junior Sailor: MA2 Patrick Myers; and Blue Jacket: MA3 Elise Flores. Sailors of the Quarter from Navy Munitions Command Pacific Conus West Division Unit Seal Beach were: Senior Sailor: MN1 Christian Quezada; Junior Sailor: MN2 Yanina Carrero; and Bluejacket: GM3 Wallace Garlington.
Unfortunately, the sailors from NWSSB could not attend the meeting or awards program because of the needs of the Weapons Station.
Tim Brown, Commanding Officer of Grampaw Pettibone Squadron, presented the certificates and gifts to the sailors. He was assisted by Michael Just, Senior Enlisted Advisor for the Navy Munitions Command, West Division, Seal Beach, and GPS Chaplain Bill Thompson.
The Guest Speaker for the meeting was COL Greg Raths, USMC (Ret.) who told the audience about his days as a Marine Corps aviator flying various aircraft including the F-4 Phantom and F-18 Hornet in war and peace. He also related a few examples of cheating death while flying. His stories, plus many more, are contained in his book, “9 Lives of a Fighter Pilot.” COL Raths is running for election to the U.S. House to represent California’s 45th Congressional District.