Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Once Upon A Time - Punctilious Correspondence

Correspondence With Naval Officers

All naval officers are expected to be punctilious with their personal correspondence. Letters written in a personal capacity or semi-official letters must be answered promptly by juniors and seniors alike. While it is the very height of discourteousness to 'forget' to reply, it is equally important to address the letter correctly.

The Chief of Naval Operations is always to be addressed as 'Dear CNO'. Other Flag Officers are to be addressed as 'Dear Admiral', irrespective of whether they are Rear or Vice Admiral. Alternatively, they may be addressed by the appointment they hold, for instance, 'Dear Commander, Fleet Forces Command'.

Officers of the rank of Captain and below may be addressed with only the rank or with the rank and name, for e.g. 'Dear Commander' or as 'Dear Commander Smith'. Civilians are addressed by their name or by their designation, (e.g., 'Dear Mr. Secretary' or as 'Dear Mr Gates'). Letters to juniors are to be similarly addressed with the only exception that if the officer is a close acquaintance the rank can be dropped and he can be addressed as 'Dear Jim'.

A semi official letter is ended with, 'Very respectfully', "Yours Aye', or 'Yours in Naval Service' - the former being the most formal of the three.

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