NAVY FAMILY OMBUDSMAN APPRECIATION DAY

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FM CNO WASHINGTON DC//00//
TO NAVADMIN
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UNCLAS //N01750//
NAVADMIN 256/06
MSGID/GENADMIN/CNO WASHINGTON DC/-/SEP//
SUBJ/NAVY FAMILY OMBUDSMAN APPRECIATION DAY//


GENTEXT/REMARKS/1.  ON BEHALF OF SAILORS AND FAMILY MEMBERS ALL OVER
THE WORLD, I WANT TO TAKE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO THANK THE THOUSANDS OF
DEDICATED NAVY OMBUDSMEN WHO WORK SO TIRELESSLY EVERY DAY TO IMPROVE
FAMILY READINESS.  WE COULD NOT DO IT WITHOUT YOU, AND WE ARE
GRATEFUL FOR YOUR SERVICE.
2.  AS TALENTED VOLUNTEERS, YOU FORM THE VITAL LINK BETWEEN COMMANDS
AND FAMILIES, HELPING EASE THE STRAIN OF LIFE IN THE NAVY SO OUR
SAILORS CAN FOCUS ON THE IMPORTANT WORK THEY MUST DO FOR THE NATION.
YOU KEEP THE CHAIN OF COMMAND INFORMED ABOUT A WIDE VARIETY OF
ISSUES FACING OUR PEOPLE -- FROM PAY AND COMPENSATION TO CHILD CARE
AND HOUSING -- WHILE ALSO PLAYING A MAJOR ROLE IN CRISIS RESPONSE
AND EMERGENCIES.
3.  IT IS A BIG JOB, AND IT IS GETTING BIGGER ALL THE TIME.  AS THE
PACE OF CHANGE AND THE NEED FOR TIMELY INFORMATION SPEED ON, WE FIND
OURSELVES INCREASINGLY RELYING ON YOU FOR GUIDANCE AND SUPPORT.
EVERYTHING FROM SURGE AND INDIVIDUAL AUGMENTEE DEPLOYMENTS TO
NATURAL DISASTERS AT HOME AND ALL OVER THE WORLD HAS DEMONSTRATED
JUST HOW CRITICAL YOU ARE TO KEEPING OUR NAVY FAMILY CONNECTED.
OUR NAVYS GOAL IS TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERY SAILOR AND EVERY FAMILY
MEMBER -- AT SEA AND ASHORE ALL OVER THE WORLD -- HAS ACCESS TO THE
TALENT AND EXPERTISE YOU HAVE TO OFFER.
4.  I WILL NOT SOON FORGET THE DAY I MET A DOZEN OR SO OMBUDSMEN
DOWN IN GULFPORT, MS JUST AFTER HURRICANE KATRINA DEVASTATED THE
GULF COAST.  ALL OF THEM WERE VICTIMS OF THE STORM IN SOME FORM OR
FASHION.  SOME OF THEM HAD LOST EVERYTHING THEY OWNED - AND YET EACH
OF THEM WAS THERE AT THE FLEET AND FAMILY SUPPORT CENTER, LOOKING
NOT AFTER THEMSELVES, BUT AFTER THE NEEDS OF OTHER NAVY FAMILIES.  I
WALKED OUT OF THERE CONVINCED THAT OUR SAILORS AND THEIR FAMILIES
WERE GOING TO BE JUST FINE, AND A RECENT TRIP BACK TO GULFPORT THIS
MONTH CONFIRMED IT.  THOUGH THERE IS MUCH YET TO DO IN THAT REGION,
THE OMBUDSMEN THERE HAVE WORKED EXCEPTIONALLY HARD TO HELP GET OUR
PEOPLE BACK ON THEIR FEET AND BACK TO A SENSE OF NORMALCY.  IT WAS
INSPIRING TO SEE.
5.  WHEN WE TALK ABOUT COMBAT READINESS OR HIGH RETENTION, WHEN WE
SAY WE ARE THE STRONGEST NAVY IN THE WORLD MANNED BY THE BEST
SAILORS IN OUR HISTORY WE CAN DO SO ONLY BECAUSE PEOPLE LIKE YOU
HAVE NEVER LET US FORGET THAT THE REAL SOURCE OF OUR STRENGTH LIES
AT HOME AND WITH THE FAMILY.
6.  AGAIN, THANK YOU FOR YOUR CONTINUED SERVICE TO THE NAVY AND THE
NATION.  ALL THE BEST TO YOU AND YOUR FAMILIES ON THIS OMBUDSMAN
APPRECIATION DAY.
7.  ADM MIKE MULLEN, CHIEF OF NAVAL OPERATIONS.//
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