Subase Pearl Harbor Det 716 

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LCDR Grant Carmichael 

Greetings to all my fellow shipmates!  I recently connected with my good friend Bill Lord and he asked me to put together this brief history and background of how I'm still serving in the Navy.

Still in the Navy.

I am a Lieutenant Commander serving with a unit in Minneapolis.  My drill weekend job is to be the Officer in Charge of a Remote Drill Site, which is the extension of a Minneapolis unit.  We work in lcdr_carmichael.jpgOmaha at US Strategic Command.  It's a six-hour drive, which is a long way from the 1 ½ hour journey which first associated me with Subase in 1984!  I just celebrated my 31st anniversary with the United States Navy in September of 2008, and I'm well into this 32nd year of my career.  I served on active duty recently in 2002, being mobilized to Hawaii.  Going back a bit, I actually joined the Navy Reserve-delayed entry-in December 1976, went to San Diego boot camp in August of 1977, then on to active duty through 1982.  While on active duty I was promoted to Third Class in Electronics School, and made Second while on board the USS Parsons, DDG-33.  I joined the Reserves in September of 1984 and made First Class while with Subase.  I was with Subase from 1984 to 1994 and was commissioned in July of 1994.  I was an Ensign from 1994 to 1996, LTJG from 1996 to 1998, LT from 1998 to 2000, then in 2003 I was promoted to Lieutenant Commander.  I will be "up" for Commander this March/April timeframe of 2009.  It's hard to believe that I have reached this milestone in my career.  I remember thinking of what a great role model Commander Rehwaldt was in my life so long ago, and now, I'm up for that very same rank.

Family life.

My family is the joy of my life.  I have three children, Paul, 12, James, 10, and Emma, who is 8: 6th, 5th, and 3rd grades.  My wife Lisa owns her own business-Sensaria Natural Bodycare-and has owned this since 2002 when I was mobilized.  I have been married-which some of you attended-since 1990, all of which has been wonderful.  I don't like being away from them when I do "Navy stuff", so it's been harder and harder to stay in the Reserves as they all get older.

My time with Subase

 When I think back to my early days with Subase, I remember, "I am working with ‘bubble-heads'?"  I was so wrong!  This time with Subase was a time I will cherish forever.  I was in college and drove up to Minneapolis each weekend, sometimes with Jerry Hiatala, and sometimes with Harold Kruse.  Those were busy, busy weekends.  On the day I enlisted in the Reserves, the officer that read the oath was retiring!  He was the Chaplain too!  So, I knew this would be OK. 

From what I remember of drill weekends, I recall time that flew by quickly, but the personalities and the places remain with me.  I remember Thor sitting in the back corner of the classroom studying his math courses and being on a "water diet".   (For the longest time I actually thought his name, "Thor", was just a nickname, when in fact, it was his real name: "Thorleif"!)  I remember Gary Esler grant_carmichael.jpgpracticing his Morse code in the classroom and then leading the charge to clean up after lunch!  And of course, Jerry Gregonis saving all the receipts he could so that he could write off the expenses from the Navy on his income tax.  He used to drive those brand new Chryslers to drill weekends too and we'd all be very jealous!  Well, at least me.  And there were the jokes by Commander Rehwaldt about the Hittites, the time Capt Francis wore sunglasses and we played the theme from Top Gun for morning quarters and actually WATCHING Top Gun as a Reserve training event.  The briefs by Master Chief Fosse on how to write evaluations, and the Training Officer's briefs on the SORM.  Uhhh!  And those ONION SKINS!  Remember?  That's how we got paid?!?!  I hated them.  Mark "Marky" Flom had the greatest sense o humor too-dry, but funny.  He was always looking out for me, even though he wasn't a "twigget".  But the event I remember most was the "ET off-sites" at Bill's house.  The Electronic Techs would actually get together at Bill's and we'd call it "drill weekend training" in the spirit of "electronics" training.  It was always done with the "nudge, nudge, wink, wink" to the "Os". 

My time with Subase has certainly been blessed and I am proud to be a "bubble-head", if only adopted by all of you.  Thanks for taking care of me and for launching me to this success.  I owe a lot of this to you all; you were my role models and I thank you for the gifts you have given me.

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