published Friday, June 29th, 2012

Military spotlight in Chattanooga

U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, left, congratulates 2nd Lt. Bailey Whitaker on his graduation from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md.
U.S. Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta, left, congratulates 2nd Lt. Bailey Whitaker on his graduation from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md.
Contributed Photo

Chattanoogan trains Afghan engineers

Chattanooga Lt. Jennifer Elliott was among the U.S. Navy Seabees of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 7 who have partnered with the U.S. Air Force's 443rd Air Expeditionary Advisory Squadron to train and instruct Afghan engineers at the Kandahar Air Wing on Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan.

The training taught Afghan Air Force civil engineers how to be self-reliant in completing construction projects, according to Petty Officer 3rd Class Michael Scichilone of Defense Video & Imagery Distribution System.

Elliott, a civil engineer Corps officer with NMCB 7, said, "This project provides technical expertise and assists with developing construction skills for Kandahar Air Wing engineers while they are simultaneously supporting their local mission."

As part of the training, U.S. forces taught the Afghan engineers carpentry, welding and construction of concrete walls and foundations. NMCB 7's Delta Company camp maintenance electricians also built an electrical training aid for the engineers to learn interior wiring.

"This project was extremely successful," said Elliott. "They were able to work alongside Afghan air force personnel and help them take ownership and control of construction operations in Kandahar."

Whitaker graduates from Naval Academy

Second Lt. P. Bailey Whitaker III was commissioned an officer in the U.S. Marine Corps following graduation from the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Md.

He is the son of Philip and Cindy Whitaker of Lookout Mountain, Ga., and a 2008 graduate of Baylor School.

Whitaker completed four years of academic, physical and professional training at the academy to receive a bachelor's degree in Naval architecture. He has been assigned to Quantico, Va., where he will continue his training.

Basic training

• Fort Jackson: Army National Guard Pfc. William T. Dodson Jr., son of Billy Dodson; Army Pvt. Morgan R. Tunell, granddaughter of Jenila Martin of Georgetown, Tenn,. graduate of Bradley Central High School.

• Fort Sill: Army Pvt. Clay E. Steele, son of Michelle Land of Dunlap, Tenn., graduate of Sequatchie High School; Army Pvt. Daniel E. Weaver, son of Kim Shamblen and Geen Weaver.

• Lackland Air Force: Air Force Airman Robert J. Fielden, son of Elizabeth Fielden of Ringgold, graduate of Ringgold High School; Air Force Airman 1st Class Joshua A. Westbrook, son of Tami Westbrook of Ringgold, Ga., and Tim Westbrook of Chickamauga, Ga., graduate of Chattanooga Christian School and Georgia Northwestern Technical College.

Also, Air Force Airman 1st Class Anthony L. Hindmon, son of Terry and Kim Hindmon, graduate of Central High School and Miller Motte Technical College; Air Force Airman Brett W. Walters, son of Pamela and James Walters, homeschool graduate; Air Force Airman Marquise A. Barfield, son of Lajuan Elston, graduate of Central High School.

Air Force Airman 1st Class Adam L. Miller, son of Darla Miller of Ringgold, graduate of Ringgold High School; Air National Guard Airman Terrill S. Clark, son of Janice Anderson and Bobby Belcher, graduate of Sequatchie County High School.

Also, Air Force Airman 1st Class Kelsey B. Simpson, daughter of Adrienne and Paul Simpson, graduate of Soddy-Daisy High School; Air Force Airman Darien K. Hogans, son of Kenneth and Erika Hogans, graduate of Signal Mountain Middle-High School.

Air Force Airman Robert B. Rogers, son of Robert Rogers, graduate of Boyd Buchanan High School; Air Force Airman 1st Class Lawrence M. Miller, son of Lawrence and Darla Kay Miller, graduate of North Georgia Military Academy; Air Force Airman Tsaraph B. Gilbreath, son of Gary Gilbreath of Trenton, Ga.

about Susan Pierce...

Susan Palmer Pierce is a reporter and columnist in the Life department. She began her journalism career as a summer employee 1972 for the News Free Press, typing bridal announcements and photo captions. She became a full-time employee in 1980, working her way up to feature writer, then special sections editor, then Lifestyle editor in 1995 until the merge of the NFP and Times in 1999. She was honored with the 2007 Chattanooga Woman of ...

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