Thursday, September 15, 2011

Captain Gary Edwards - Made an Honorary Chief Petty Officer - Approved by MCPON Rick West

“A long, long time ago, when I was a young, inexperienced ensign, I reported to my first ship, the USS Saginaw (LST 1188),” Edwards said. “An old, mean, crusty Chief Petty officer took me under his wing. Now technically, I was his supervisor, but in reality, I was his student.”  “He taught me that a good leader leads by example, and takes care of his Sailors,” Edwards continued. “The naval officer I am today was due to his mentorship all those years ago. And each day I try to live up to his expectations of what it means to be a good leader.” 

Standing just over 5-feet tall, Thompson is dwarfed by Edwards, who stands 6 feet, 4 inches. The audience roared with laughter as a member of the CID Chiefs Mess brought “The Equalizer” – a custommade, engraved oak stool – to the stage for Thompson to stand on as he pinned a set of his own anchors on Edwards’ uniform. 

With the designation of honorary Chief Petty Officer, Edwards joins such notables as comedian, Bill Cosby; actor, Ernest Borgnin; Chief of Naval Operations, ADM Gary Roughead; Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, ADM Mike Mullen; Pearl Harbor survivor-turned motivational speaker, William Gentry; current Secretary of the Navy, Ray Mabus and former Secretary of the Navy, Donald C. Winter.

“This is a very special honor for a very special officer,” Thompson said.  “In my 30 years in the Navy, I’ve never seen it happen before, but CAPT Edwards really deserves this honor.”

I am told that the MCPON declined Captain Edwards' 
offer to make him an honorary Ensign.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Captain Edwards is a superb CO. Period.