My Last Reenlistment into Navy

On August 3, 2019 I reenlisted back into the Navy Reserves after successfully reaching 20 years of Naval service. I intend to retire from Naval service in 2023 to pursue a new career. Here are the the pictures that capture my moment during and after ceremony.

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Memorial Day

Memorial Day is an American holiday, observed on the last Monday of May, honoring the men and women who died while serving in the U.S. military. Memorial Day 2019 occurs on Monday, May 27.

Originally known as Decoration Day, it originated in the years following the Civil War and became an official federal holiday in 1971. But during World War I the United States found itself embroiled in another major conflict, and the holiday evolved to commemorate American military personnel who died in all wars.

For decades, Memorial Day continued to be observed on May 30, the date Logan had selected for the first Decoration Day. But in 1968 Congress passed the Uniform Monday Holiday Act, which established Memorial Day as the last Monday in May in order to create a three-day weekend for federal employees; the change went into effect in 1971. The same law also declared Memorial Day a federal holiday.

Many Americans observe Memorial Day by visiting cemeteries or memorials, holding family gatherings and participating in parades. Unofficially, it marks the beginning of the summer season.

 

Wonder Ending to Pieper Brothers

With the news media hungry and seemingly seeking out “bad news” stories regarding our Navy, thought I’d take a minute to share a “Good News” story from your Naval Forces Europe/Naval Forces Africa/U.S. SIXTH Fleet AOR.

For decades, he was known only as Unknown X-9352 at a World War II American cemetery in Belgium where he was interred.

On June 19, 1944, Radioman 2nd Class Julius “Henry” Pieper and his twin brother Radioman 2nd Class Ludwig Julius Wilhelm “Louie” Pieper were members of Landing Ship Tank Number 523 (LST-523), off the coast of Normandy, France.  Only 13 days after the June 6, D-Day landings, LST-523’s mission was to deliver supplies at the Normandy beachhead and remove the wounded. It never got there.  The ship struck an underwater mine, exploded, and sank as it tried to approach Utah Beach, of the 145 Navy crew members, 117 perished.

While Louie’s body was soon found, identified and laid to rest, his twin brother Henry’s remains were not immediately recovered and following the establishment of permanent overseas U.S. cemeteries, Henry was memorialized on the Tablets of the Missing, also at Normandy American Cemetery.  Henry’s remains were recovered in 1961 by French salvage divers and, due to the unrelenting resolve of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) to account for Americans who went missing while serving our country, Henry’s remains were identified in 2017.

On Tuesday 19 June 2018, 74 years to the day after trying to reach the blood-soaked D-Day beaches, Radioman 2nd Class Julius “Henry” Pieper, at the request of his family, was laid to rest beside his twin brother in Normandy. A lone bugler played taps as the casket was lowered in an end-of-day military ceremony attended by a half-dozen family members, closing a circle of loss. Each laid a red rose on the casket and two scattered American soil over it.

The professionals of Navy Region Europe, Africa, Southwest Asia, with tremendous support from the Naval Forces Europe Band, Naval Hospital Naples, US Marines, and the US Embassy Paris, led the efforts to ensure our shipmate, who made the ultimate sacrifice, received the professional and dignified burial ceremony he so earnestly deserved.

In reading the background on the twin brothers, their service and sacrifice, and the efforts our country has taken to identify the missing brother, I know we are all proud to wear the cloth of our Nation in defense of freedom!

Thank you for all each of you do every day in service to our great Nation!

This short video (2 minutes) capturing the event located at:

https://apnews.com/7db6b2231a8743458e0c045157107f43

U.S. Navy Observes LGBT Pride Month

The U.S. Navy’s primary mission of deterring and defeating adversaries in all domains across all spectrums of warfare, the Navy is committed to building and maintaining force comprised of the most capable and qualified Sailors regardless of ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, class or background.

Navy joins the nation in observing LGBT Pride Month