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May is Military Appreciation Month

Top headlines
An Idaho Army National Guardsman embraces a family member Feb. 23, 2022, before deploying to support Operation Enduring Freedom. Photo By: National Guard Master Sgt. Becky VanshurMilitary Spouse Appreciation Day is Friday, May 6

by David Vergun, DOD News
This year's Military Spouse Appreciation Day is May 6.
Traditionally, it is the Friday before Mother's Day, building on the idea that 92% of military spouses are female, C. Eddy Mentzer, associate director of military community support programs for the Office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Military Community and Family Policy, said.  Read more....

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An Idaho Army National Guardsman embraces a family member Feb. 23, 2022, before deploying to support Operation Enduring Freedom. Photo By: National Guard Master Sgt. Becky VanshurDOD recognizes military children during April's Month of the Military Child
For nearly 40 years, April 1 has marked the Defense Department's kickoff for the Month of the Military Child, and this month promises to be packed with events for parents and children of all ages, said a program analyst in DOD's Children, Youth and Families, Office of Military Family Readiness Policy, Military Community and Family Policy.  Read more....

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An Idaho Army National Guardsman embraces a family member Feb. 23, 2022, before deploying to support Operation Enduring Freedom. Photo By: National Guard Master Sgt. Becky VanshurApril is Sexual Assault Awareness & Prevention Month
Bringing attention to and preventing sexual assault and military sexual trauma is an every-day, year-long goal. While National Sexual Awareness and Prevention Month is recognized in April, bringing attention to and preventing sexual assault and military sexual trauma is an every-day, year-long goal.   Read more....

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An Idaho Army National Guardsman embraces a family member Feb. 23, 2022, before deploying to support Operation Enduring Freedom. Photo By: National Guard Master Sgt. Becky VanshurCamp Pendleton takes big steps toward wildlife preservation
by Lance Cpl. Nataly Espitia , Camp Pendleton
April is widely regarded as Earth Month all over the globe. Camp Pendleton honors, protects, and conserves the Earth not only on this occasion, but every day of the year. Plenty of land and resources go into the conservation and care for wildlife aboard the installation.   Read more....

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MCAS Miramar welcomes community to save the date for 2022 Miramar Air Show  
MARINE CORPS AIR STATION MIRAMAR, Calif. (March 28, 2022) – The commanding officer of Marine Corps Air Station Miramar, Col. Thomas M. Bedell, and the commanding general of the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, Maj. Gen. Bradford J. Gering, invite the San Diego community and aviation enthusiasts to the 2022 MCAS Miramar Air Show, Sept. 23-25.
The theme of this year’s air show is “Marines: Fight, Evolve, Win.” and is a direct reflection of the Commandant of the Marine Corps Force Design 2030 program and the technical innovations the service is undertaking to remain the 21st century’s force in readiness.
“It’s been almost three years since MCAS Miramar was able to open its doors to our neighbors and share in our love of aviation, and I am extremely excited to be able to do so once again. We
are proud to call America’s Finest City home and bring back one of the world’s most anticipated aviation exhibitions,” said Bedell.
While the full schedule will be released in the upcoming weeks, guests can count on seeing the Marine Corps’ F-35B demonstration, the unique Marine Air-Ground Task Force demonstration, the Air Force’s F-22 Raptor demonstration team, Aaron Fitzgerald flying the Red Bull Helicopter, a 5G Technology Expo and much more.
The air show is free to the public and upgraded seating options will be on sale this summer. For ticket information, COVID-19 protocols, business and vendor opportunities, and more, please visit the Miramar Air Show website at

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Navy Exchange and Marine Corps Exchange customers can support Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society 
NEX and Marine Corps Exchange (MCX) customers can support the Navy-Marine Corps Relief Society (NMCRS) by purchasing a $5 benefit ticket at select NEX and MCX locations and online at April 3 – May 7.
The purchase of the $5 benefit ticket entitles customers to $5 off as well as a 5% discount applied to a one time in-store purchase from May 1 - 7. The discounts are good on regular, sale and clearance merchandise. Some exclusions apply.
Customers can also purchase the benefit ticket online at Once purchased, customers will receive an email with a coupon code for 5% off along with an additional $5 off coupon for any online purchase made May 1 - 10. Some exclusions apply.
In 2021, NMCRS assisted over 34,800 clients with $29.5 million in assistance. NMCRS offers visiting nurses, budgeting for baby, thrift shops, financial education and educational assistance programs to Sailors, Marines and their families.
As one NMCRS client commented, “I never imagined I would need help when I donated in the past, but I’m so thankful to have NMCRS.”
Since 2011, NEX and MCX patrons have donated over $4.5 million to NMCRS.

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San Diego's VA Medical Center renamed after
Capt. Jennifer Moreno  

In March President Biden signed into law H.R. 3665, designating the San Diego VA Medical Center as the Jennifer Moreno Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center and supporting the designation of a prominent space within the facility to honor Kathleen Bruyere.  Read more....

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Veterans Association of North County logo.Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day event held at VANC resource center in Oceanside
Veterans Association of North County and Hospice of the North Coast hosts a Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans Day Celebration event 9 a.m. to noon, March 30, at the VANC resource center, 1617 Mission Ave. in Oceanside to honor Vietnam War veterans for their service and sacrifice.
The keynote speaker is Marine Lt. Gen. (Ret.) Edward Hanlon, Jr. Vietnam veterans will be presented with lapel pins provided by the Department of Defense’s Vietnam War Commemoration. Surviving spouses will be presented with Certificate of Honors for their personal sacrifice and the sacrifice of their spouse. A slideshow will be given featuring photographs of veterans while they were serving during the Vietnam War.
A remembrance table will be set up for attendees to share photos and mementos of Vietnam veterans unable to attend. Bring photos and mementos of friends, family, and loved ones to display on this table during the morning, to be taken home at the end of the program. Attendees can also remember comrades and loved ones by writing their names on cards that will be provided at the event.
Veterans are encouraged to wear their uniforms, along with gear that identifies them as a Vietnam veteran.
Slideshow photos of veterans during their service in Vietnam can be e-mailed (in jpeg format) to Shelly Dew by March 23 at
Doors open 9 a.m. and program starts 10 a.m. followed by lunch at 11 a.m. Free admission. Reservations required by March 23 at

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Russia and China falsely accusing use of biological weapons against Russians, say officials 
March 10, 2022 -- The United States is not assisting Ukraine with biological weapons in its war with Russia and there are no indications that biological weapons are being used by Ukraine, said a Defense Department official.  Two senior defense officials held an on-background press briefing at the Pentagon. Read more....

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Machinist’s Mate 2nd Class Caleb Cruse, currently assigned to amphibious transport dock ship USS Portland (LPD 27), embraces his son following the ship's return. Portland, a part of the Essex Amphibious Ready Group, returned to Naval Base San Diego March 4 after a deployment to U.S. 3rd, 5th, and 7th Fleets in support of regional stability and a free and open Indo-Pacific. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Jacob D. Bergh.USS Essex ARG returns from seven-month deployment
Essex Amphibious Ready Group, 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit return from deployment
The Essex Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) returned to port at Naval Base San Diego March 4, concluding a seven-month deployment to U.S. 3rd, 5th, and 7th Fleet areas of operation.
Essex ARG is comprised of the multi-purpose amphibious assault carrier USS Essex (LHD 2), amphibious transport dock USS Portland (LPD 27), and dock landing ship USS Pearl Harbor (LSD 52) led by Amphibious Squadron (PHIBRON) 1. Read more...

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NAVAL BASE SAN DIEGO (Feb. 6, 2022) Sailors assigned to Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS O'Kane (DDG 77) embrace their families after returning to their homeport at Naval Base San Diego. O’Kane, a part of the Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group, returned to Naval Base San Diego, Feb. 6, following an independent deployment to the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleets in support of national tasking and to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific. U.S. Navy photo by MC1 Kelby Sanders.USS Savannah (LCS 28), newest San Diego ship
by Petty Officer 2nd Class Vance Hand
NAVAL BASE SAN DIEGO - Littoral combat ship USS Savannah arrived at its homeport of Naval Base San Diego March 1.
Prior to arriving in San Diego, Savannah officially joined the fleet on Feb. 5 when it was commissioned in Brunswick, Georgia. During the ship’s sail-around, they completed a successful transit through the Panama Canal. Read more...

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Perry Chrysler Dodge Jeep Ram San Diego

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Carl Vinson CSG returns home to San Diego from deployment; USS Lake Champlain's wrap-up
The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group returned to San Diego, marking the end of an eight-month deployment to U.S. 3rd and 7th Fleets areas of operation, Feb. 14. Read more....

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Airmen and civilians at Dover Air Force Base, Del., palletize ammunition, weapons and other equipment bound for Ukraine, Jan. 21, 2022. Since 2014, the United States has committed more than $5.4 billion in total assistance to Ukraine, including security and non-security assistance. The United States reaffirms its steadfast commitment to Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity in support of a secure and prosperous Ukraine. Air Force photo by Mauricio Campino
Dedication ceremony held for Women's Reserve Battalion Monument
MARINE CORPS RECRUIT DEPOT SAN DIEGO, Calif. (February 11, 2022) – At the beginning of World War II, it was rare to see American women in military uniforms, but as the war progressed, bitter fighting in the pacific led to an urgent need for more Marines. It was our brave American women, from across the country, who answered the nation’s call. Their presence, accomplishments and contributions, are now woven into Marine Corps history and their legacy has paved the way for future generations, shaping the organization as we see it today. Read more...

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NAVAL BASE SAN DIEGO (Feb. 6, 2022) Sailors assigned to Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS O'Kane (DDG 77) embrace their families after returning to their homeport at Naval Base San Diego. O’Kane, a part of the Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group, returned to Naval Base San Diego, Feb. 6, following an independent deployment to the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleets in support of national tasking and to ensure a free and open Indo-Pacific. U.S. Navy photo by MC1 Kelby Sanders.USS O'Kane returns home from deployment
The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS O'Kane (DDG 77) returned home to Naval Base San Diego, completing an eight-month independent deployment to the U.S. 5th and 7th Fleet areas of operation, Feb. 6. O'Kane deployed in June 2021 in support of national tasking, serving as the ballistic missile defense (BMD) commander for Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 1 while operating in the U.S. 7th Fleet and the primary BMD asset while in the U.S. 5th Fleet. Read more...

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KC-46a PegasusMarch Air Reserve Base named preferred location for next KC-46A Pegasus
WASHINGTON (AFNS) -- The Department of the Air Force selected March Air Reserve Base (ARB), in Riverside County, California, as the preferred location to host the next KC-46A Pegasus aircraft. The decision was made after conducting site surveys that assessed locations based on factors related to mission, infrastructure capacity, community support, environmental considerations and cost. Twelve KC-46As will replace KC-135 Stratotankers at March ARB. The new tankers will bring many enhanced capabilities, such as boom and drogue refueling on the same sortie, worldwide navigations and communication, cargo capacity on the entire main deck floor, receiver air refueling, improved force protection, and multi-point air refueling capability. The location is about an hour and a half north of San Diego. A final basing decision will be made after an environmental impact analysis, which is expected to take place in fall 2023. Grissom ARB, Indiana, and Tinker Air Force Base, Oklahoma, are considered reasonable alternatives and will also undergo environmental impact analyses. Read more about the KC-46A Pegasus...

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NAVCENT expands unmanned integration, operates Saildrone in Arabian GulfNAVCENT expands unmanned integration, operates Saildrone in Arabian Gulf
Task Force 59, NAVCENT’s dedicated staff for new unmanned systems and artificial intelligence discovery, initiated Saildrone operational testing off the coast of Bahrain one month after launching the a Saildron in the Gulf of Aqaba. Read more...

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Official seal of the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO)CNO Gilday issues new 'Charge of Command to commanders
Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Mike Gilday issued a new "Charge of Command" to commanders Jan. 11, 2022. Read more...

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Official seal of the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO)Navy extends boot camp training to from 8 weeks to 10 weeks
GREAT LAKES, Ill. - Recruit Training Command (RTC), the Navy’s enlisted boot camp, has extended the duration of its basic military training (BMT) program from eight to 10 weeks.
Recruits who arrived Jan. 3 and thereafter will be enrolled in the 10-week BMT program.
“We’ve added more leadership and professional development to the basic training toolkit, which Sailors can rely on throughout their careers,” said Rear Adm. Jennifer Couture, commander, Naval Service Training Command. “This additional training reinforces character development with a warfighting spirit so our Navy is strong, lethal and ready.”
“Sailor for Life,” a new training phase in the additional two weeks, provides recruits with more training in mentorship, small-unit leadership, advanced Warrior Toughness training, and professional and personal development through the Navy’s MyNavy Coaching initiative.
“The additions were the result of fleet feedback and the hard work of all the staff here at RTC and throughout the Navy,” said Lt. Cmdr. Katy Bock, military training director, Recruit Training Command. “Every recruit now graduates with more tools and skills to make them more effective and combat ready Sailors.”
Recruit Training Command continually builds on what it means to be a basically trained Sailor. The 10-week BMT program enhances Recruit Training Command’s ability to supply the Navy with basically trained, engaged and connected warfighters.
For more information about Recruit Training Command, visit

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PACIFIC OCEAN (Nov. 8, 2021) An F-35C Lightning II, assigned to Marine Wing Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 314, launches from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72). Abraham Lincoln is underway conducting routine operations in the U.S. 3rd Fleet. U.S. Marine Corps photo by 1st Lt. Charles Allen.First USMC F-35C squadron deploys with Carrier Air Wing Nine
Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 314 of 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing has marked a key milestone for Marine Corps history as they departed San Diego Bay with Carrier Air Wing Nine aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln as the first Marine squadron to deploy the F-35C on an aircraft carrier. Read more...

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PACIFIC OCEAN (Jan. 3, 2022) F-35C Lightning II, assigned to Marine Fighter Attack Squadron (VMFA) 314, arrive aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) as they prepare to deploy alongside the Navy as an integrated part of Carrier Strike Group 3. The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group, led by Carrier Strike Group 3, deployed from San Diego, Jan. 3, in support of global maritime security operations. An integral part of U.S. Pacific Fleet, U.S. 3rd Fleet operates naval forces in the Indo-Pacific and provides the realistic, relevant training necessary to flawlessly execute our Navy's role across the full spectrum of military operations-from combat operations to humanitarian assistance and disaster relief. U.S. 3rd Fleet works together with our allies and partners to advance freedom of navigation, the rule of law, and other principles that underpin security for the Indo-Pacific region. (U.S. Marine Corps photo by 1stLt. Charles Allen/Released) USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group deploys from San Diego
The Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group departed on a regularly scheduled deployment Monday, January 3, in support of global maritime security operations. Read more...

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Photo of military housing in San Diego.DoD releases 2022 Basic Allowance for Housing rates
The Department of Defense has released the 2022 Basic Allowance for Housing (BAH) rates. BAH rates will increase an average of 5.1 percent when the new rates take effect on January 1, 2022. An estimated $25.6 billion will be paid to approximately one million service members. The temporarily increased BAH rates, effective October 1, 2021 for 56 military housing areas across the country, will expire on December 31, 2021 and will be replaced by the 2022 BAH rates. Read more...

See rates here:

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Dept. of Navy, California Energy commission partner on energy and water initiatives
SAN DIEGO - The Department of the Navy and the California Energy Commission signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Dec. 1 that will help the Navy and Marine Corps and the state collaborate on energy and water-related projects at DON Installations. Read more...

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California lawmakers pass bill for license reciprocity for military spousesCalifornia lawmakers pass bill for license reciprocity for military spouses
New state license reciprocity legislation was signed and passed by California Gov. Gavin Newsom, Oct. 8, 2021, easing restrictions for veterans and spouses of California active-duty service members to actively practice certain professions or vocations. Read more...

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Don't turn your back on domestic violence graphic.Department of Defense offers information about Domestic
The DoD’s 2021 Domestic Violence Awareness campaign is over but resources are available all year long. The campaign brought awareness to the military community’s responsibility to support victims, respond to abuse, and focus on prevention efforts this month and throughout the year.
Victims have two reporting options:
Unrestricted: those who want to pursue an official investigation report through the service member’s command, FAP or local law enforcement.
Restricted: those who do not want an official investigation but do want victim advocacy services, medical care and/or counseling should make a restricted report to a FAP victim advocate, clinician or supervisor, or a military health care provider. Read more...

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The former Freedom-variant littoral combat ship USS Freedom (LCS 1) departs Naval Base San Diego, Calif., on Sept. 30 in preparations to be towed to Naval Inactive Ship Maintenance Facility Bremerton. Freedom was decommissioned after more than 10 years of service. US Navy photo.First Littoral Combat Ship, USS Freedom, decomissioned
USS Freedom (LCS-1) was decommissioned in Sept. at Naval Base San Diego after 13 years in the fleet. The decommissioning service was limited to ship plankowners and former crew members due to safety measures in place due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read more...

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US Naval Community College logoU.S. Naval Community College now accepting applications
QUANTICO, Va. — The U.S. Naval Community College is now taking applications for the first phase of its Pilot II program. Read more...

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Picture of sample ID card.DoD says it's time to renew your extended ID card
The Defense Department is asking as many as a half-million ID card holders to go online now and make appointments to renew their IDs — many of which are past the expiration dates printed on them.
DOD extended the expiration dates electronically to account for the challenges of renewing them in an COVID-19 environment.

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US Dept of Veterans Affairs logoResources for struggling veterans
Veterans from all eras are reacting to the events around the world, and may question the meaning of their service or whether it was worth their sacrifice. US Dept of Veterans Affairs in California offers the following information. Read more...

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United Through Reading®
Service members invited to record stories for family
United Through Reading® (UTR) is a free program helping ease the stress of separation for military and veteran families by having the service members or Veteran read children’s books aloud for their family to watch at home during times of physical separation. It is available for any type of separation, including but not limited to, deployment, training, geobaching, or shift work.
UTR provides service members and veterans a chance to make lasting connections from afar through the power of shared storytime. The recording and the book are given to the child and family at home at no cost.
Being a parent is not required; service members can send the recording & book(s) to any special child in their life such as younger sister or brother, niece, nephew, grandchild, or godchild.
The recording can be made via UTR’s free and secure UTR App, at one of UTR’s story stations, or at the Mobile Story Station at a community event. For more information visit or e-mail

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