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USS John Paul Jones Ombudsman Web Site

Ombudsman Newsletter April 2008
Family Support Group Update
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Emergency Information
How to Contact your Sailor
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News Alert! New!
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Thank you VFW Post 1512!
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April 2008                                                                                     Issue 4

CO’s Corner

 Hello to all,


            We have now passed the half way point of deployment

and continue  to go strong.  Many things have changed, and

changed again since the last newsletter.  We were looking forward to

 a short stop in Guam but that was cancelled.  Then we had visions

 of Hong Kong, but again, that was cancelled.  Then were told we were going to Osaka, Japan, and yes that was cancelled.  Now we are back on for Hong Kong.  It will be about 40 days between port visits, so the crew will have earned this liberty port.  There are also rumors of another liberty port prior to our transit back to Third Fleet, but that will have to wait until the next newsletter installment.  Our schedule has been written in sand this deployment!


Our port visit to Pusan, South Korea was very enjoyable, though a little cold for a Southern California based ship. We all dressed warm and experienced all    the wonderful things that were offered.  We welcomed many South Korean Sailors onboard for ship tours and they returned the favor as we visited their ships.  Though their ships are very clean and wide open, I think our Sailors much more prefer life in JPJ.  We also participated in a multitude of outdoor activities, shopping and sight seeing.

Once underway from Pusan, JPJ kicked off the Foal Eagle Exercise by taking tactical control of two South Korean (ROKN) warships and conducted a series of tactical maneuvering drills.  It went extremely well and was a precursor for the successes to come.  Throughout the events, we had five ROKN personnel onboard while sending two JPJ Sailors to the ROKS Kang Gam Chan DDH 979.  Everyone enjoyed the camaraderie experienced and the event was a huge success with our allied partners. 

            Following Foal Eagle, we sailed out of the Sea of Japan to take station off the coast of Okinawa where JPJ and Chafee joined forces with the Essex Expeditionary Strike Group (Essex, Juneau, Harpers Ferry).  We were hand picked to participate in their certification exercise and assume the roles of Surface and Subsurface Warfare Commander and Screen Commander.  We were basically responsible for defending the entire Group from enemy submarines and surface ships while maneuvering each ship in the operating area.  It was very exciting and rewarding as all of our teams performed well and were given rave reviews from Seventh Fleet and the Expeditionary Strike Force Commanders. 

            We are now in full force preparation for ULTRA-S.  This is the Unit Level Training and Sustainment assessment that happens every six months.  Afloat Training Group, Commander Strike Group 11 and Commander Destroyer Squadron 23 personnel make up this 30 person team that inspects all the ships in

the Nimitz Strike Group in every operational area.  I know we will do well as the crew is very motivated and excited to show off their stuff.


I will leave you with the GREAT news that each of your Sailors is doing extremely well in the very demanding environment of Seventh Fleet Operations.  We look forward to our return, but understand the importance of what we are doing and why we are doing it.  Take care.


Christopher K. Barnes


Commanding Officer 




CMC’s Corner

Hello JOHN PAUL JONES Family and Friends,

      We're finally at the half point of deployment and I'm extremely proud of how   well the crew is doing.  Just finished up with ULTRA S which is a major inspection of all warfare areas and their training teams, every team was praised on their outstanding performance.

     Sailors were disappointed that Guam was cancelled; we were looking forward to showing off all our athletic talent to the rest of the Battle Group.  Now that we know where our next port is going to be, everyone is looking forward to some relaxation in Hong Kong before heading east! But before we arrived there we had a very strong showing of our favorite JPJ Idol competition and here are our winners:

1st place GM3(SW) Shaver & ETSN Smith,

2nd place was IC3 Ochsner

 3rd place was SHSN(SW) Brumfield and ENFN(SW) Dupard. 

 A week later we had Rock Band competition and I think we should have given prizes for the best band outfit along with the best band!  The Wardroom didn't fair as well as they would have like to.  Here are the very talented Bands that won along with the members names:

1st place was Nipple Refuge - STG3(SW) Frederick, STG2(SW) Turner, STG2(SW) Rodriguez, FC2(SW) R. Johnson;

 2nd  place Plumber's Crack - MR2(SW) Gatchailian, HT3 Voss, HT3 Turner, HT2(SW) Kester;

3rd place 4 Guys 1 Cup - FC2(SW) Servin, FC3 Seto, IC3 Kaeding, OS2 Brito.


Believe me it's not all fun and games out to sea but when the crew has a chance to enjoy themselves it brings out the best in them.  I couldn't ask for a better crew to service along side with.   


I would like to personally recognize some outstanding JPJ Sailors on their recent achievements.  Good job shipmates and keep up the great work!


Senior Sailor of the Quarter:  CTT1(SW/AW) Mitchell

Junior Sailor of the Quarter:  PS2(SW) Miller


Bluejacket of the Quarter:    DCFN Cummins


Sailor of the Week:

ITSN Chan                    ET3 Garcia
ETSN Smith                    HM3(SW) Arnold

Navy Commendation Medal:

LT Belton                    FCCM Yee

Navy Achievement Medal:

DC1(SW) Foster                CTT1(SW/AW) Mitchell
EN2(SW) Evans                FC2(SW) Phillips
STG2(SW) Nichols              IC3 Ochsner
IC3 Robinson       


 Letter of Commendation:

BM2(SW) Robinson              OS2(SW) Spicher
STG3(SW) Frederick            GSM3 Meeks     

BM3 Pietras                  EMFN Barros
DCFN Cummins

Enlisted Surface Warfare Qualification:

SK2(SW) Harris                HM3(SW) Arnold
GSM3(SW) Feliciano            GSM3(SW) Verdugo
ENFN(SW) Lariosbriones


Very Respectfully,


CMDCM(SW) Karol M. Kramer

Command Master Chief







I hope you all are enjoying some great spring weather. Take a deep breath and relax because we have passed the halfway point!  With any luck it will be downhill from here and we can cruise on into homecoming. 


Spring is the time for new beginnings.  In our case, our new beginning starts with Homecoming!  There are probably a lot of questions out and everyone is wondering about what it will be like.  Of course, all of the usual things run through our heads: When will they be home?  Where will they pull in? What decorations are we taking to the pier? Will and how are we decorating the house?  Is my sailor’s favorite food in the house?  What will it all be like?  But these aren’t the only things to start thinking of now.  Even though planning is already underway by the FSG for the ship’s homecoming,  now is the time to plan for yours.  Discuss what you and your sailor would like, involve any children, and most of all make it meaningful to your sailor and you.  Don’t do something simply because it is expected that “everyone” will do it.  If you love to decorate then by all means have at it but if you are like me and would rather not decorate then don’t worry about it.  This will be your homecoming so I hope that you are able to enjoy it to the fullest.


You will also need to think about the actual transition into having your sailor home.  There are a lot of emotions that people will go through and a lot of adjustment.  To make matters even harder the ship has experienced two back to back deployments with workups and INSURV in between.  Because of this our Sailors have been used to working hard on the ship just as we have been working hard at home.  They have had their routines and we have had ours.  How will you coordinate your routines again?  Don’t forget patience will be needed by all.  Spouses and significant others will need to be patient with each other.  Parents will need to be patient with children.  There will be a readjustment period that everyone will go through.  We have all grown and we will have to get used to having each other around.  Simple things like working together while putting away the dishes, cleaning the house, budgeting, and even showing affection to one another may be difficult at first.  This is normal but a lot of issues can be avoided if you start talking now. 


The FSG and I have already begun thinking of the plans for our Homecoming event and I think you will enjoy them.  Mistianna Cerami is our Homecoming Chair and she, along with her committee, is doing a fantastic job trying to get everything together so that we can all have a fun and memorable Homecoming.  As you prepare for your homecoming please be aware that no balloons of any type will be allowed at the pier.  There is a two-fold reason.  First, we have someone with a severe allergy to latex and it isn’t fair to that sailor or family member to have their homecoming ruined by a trip to the hospital.  Second, the Navy doesn’t allow Mylar balloons on base.  There will be lots of other decorations and things going on pier-side.  This will be a festive event for all involved!  Be on the lookout for more information as we get closer to Homecoming!


I also wanted to thank VFW Post 1512 for kindly hosting the FSG’s Date Night in March.  They graciously allowed  us to use join them for dinner and Karaoke .  The members made the FSG feel welcomed and we enjoyed  meeting them.  Thank you so much for all of your help! 


Heather Cox

Command Ombudsman

USS John Paul Jones (DDG 53)

(619) 743-5416 OMB line

1-866-310-4650 Careline



Family Support Group News



Dear JPJ Family and Friends,


Can you believe we have already made it to the Half-way point of the deployment? March has been a great month with the Ceramicafe event for the children, date-night and our Half-way party/picnic. The FSG would like to thank the Lemon Grove VFW Post 1512 for allowing us to hold our March date night with them for dinner and karaoke. Everyone who attended had a great time. The first slide-show CD was sent to the ship by our photography committee chair, Angie Miller. Thanks to all who submitted photos and to Angie for putting it together for our sailors to view. Our next meeting will be April 1st at the Murphy Canyon Chapel and we will be discussing homecoming activities. The April Children’s Event will be at one of the local bounce-house gyms and is being sponsored by a generous donor. A date and time is yet to be determined. The April date-night is still in the planning stages, put we are hoping to be hosting a special movie event by mid-month, look for flyers for both events coming soon.


 I hope to see many of you at the upcoming events.


Julie Gushlaw, JPJ FSG President





United Through Reading


Have you received your DVD yet?  Encourage your Sailor to make a recording that your child will be able to watch again and again.  There is nothing like having a loved ones face and voice right there at home, even if they are deployed.  By participating in United Through Reading« the bedtime story tradition can begin or continue.

If you have received a video, don’t forget to complete the “Full Circle of Communication” by sending feedback to your deployed Sailor in the form of a picture, video, or even a letter or email.  Let your Sailor know their time was well spent and how much the tape means to you and your child.  Mail your Sailor another book and another video could soon be on its way.

Think about ways to bring the story into your everyday life.  Did the characters go on a picnic?  Why not pack a picnic like the one in the book?  Did they bake cookies together?  Try baking the same ones, then talk about your favorite moments in the story.  This is a great way to make the special moments last.

Our next issue will feature comments from our own participants on how the program is working for them and their families.  If you would like to submit a comment, contact your United Through Reading« Homefront Coordinator, Jolene Mitchell, at or fill out a homefront survey on United Through Reading’s website (


Educational Benefits

ě  Reading aloud with children will provide a solid foundation for their success in all of their educational experiences.


Emotional Benefits

ě  Spouse at home feels more parenting support.


ě  Improves morale for all family members.


United Through Reading«




Navy Trivia:

    What is the uniform symbol of a Chief Petty Officer?

                   A. coffee mug

                   B. fouled anchor

                   C. goat

                   D. star


Save the Date!

Many topics are observed during the month of April.  A few of these are: The Military Child, Child Abuse Prevention, Autism and Stress Awareness.  For more information on any of these topics check out the following links:

April 4th

April 11th


Ask the Ombudsman!

Question: Why are we having all of these schedule changes?

Answer:  The simple reason: The needs of the Navy have changed.  A more complicated reason is that the world events may have changed and  indicate a need to shift locations or missions.  Additionally, in order for a US ship to visit a foreign port we must obtain permission from that country’s government.  While your sailor may have said “we are going to ports x, y, and z”, this isn’t always the case because the ship may have been denied access to that port.  Your sailor probably won’t be able to tell you exactly why the ports have changed for a variety of reasons.  First, they may not know the answer.  Second, OPSEC may prohibit discussions of why things happen, especially if the mission changes.  Please be aware that schedules change in every branch of the military and that we aren’t the only command that has schedule changes.  Patience is something that is hard to come by with schedule changes.  Just remember your Sailor doesn’t like the changes any more than you do, especially when it means that a phone call home or a chance to get off the ship is that much farther away.

This Resource is for You!

From: About the Red Cross

Mission Statement

The American Red Cross, a humanitarian organization led by volunteers and guided by its Congressional Charter and the Fundamental Principles of the International Red Cross Movement, will provide relief to victims of disaster and help people prevent, prepare for, and respond to emergencies.

The Fundamental Principles of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement include: Humanity, Impartiality, Neutrality, Independence, Voluntary Service, Unity, Universality. 


The American Red Cross (ARC) has a close working relationship with the US military and aids in getting emergency messages to deployed members.  In the event that emergency communication is needed the ARC can do the following:

  • Verify the circumstances of a death, critical illness or injury, or other emergency affecting a service member’s immediate family
  • Send an emergency communication message to the service member’s location
  • Ensure delivery of the message
  • Follow up with the family back home

If you are in need of assistance in getting an emergency message to your military member and you reside with your military member please call  877-272-7337 (toll-free) and have the following information handy:

  • Service Member's Full Name
  • Rank/Rating
  • Branch of Service
  • Social Security Number
  • Military Address
  • Information about the deployed unit and the home base unit (for deployed service members only)

If you do not reside with your military member, please call your local red cross chapter, which can be located at

Other services that can be provided are, access to financial assistance, counseling and assistance to veterans


Source: “About the Red Cross: Mission Statement”.  Red Cross.  22 March, 2008.


Navy Trivia Answer: B

FOULED ANCHOR - The foul anchor as a naval insignia got its start as the seal of the Lord Howard of Effingham. He was the Lord Admiral of England at the time of the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588. During this period the personal seal of a great officer of state was adopted as the seal of his office. The fouled anchor still remains the official seal of the Lord High Admiral of Great Britain. When this office became part of the present Board of Admiralty, the seal was retained on buttons, official seals, and cap badges. The Navy's adoption of this symbol and many other customs can be directly attributed to the influence of British Naval tradition. The fouled anchor is among them.

Source:  Smith Sr., Daniel. "Navy Historical Facts and Trivia."  State Guard Association of the United States.  15 March  2008.     < >.       


Sailors love snail mail!  Although we have the convenience of email, don’t forget to send letters and packages to your loved one at sea!  Send mail to:


Service Member’s Name


FPO AP 96669-1271


Remember…sailors love snail mail!

April 2008






























Taxes are due!






















It is never too late to be what you might have been.

- George Eliot, English Novelist