NMRTC Bremerton Welcomes Four Newest Navy Chiefs

19 November 2021

From Douglas Stutz

In time honored tradition, a name change like no other took place at Navy Medicine Readiness and Training Command (NMRTC) Bremerton, November 19, 2021.Chief Hospital Corpsman Benjamin R. Chapin, Chief Personnel Specialist Chia W. Hu, Chief Hospital Corpsman Julius M. Ramirez and Chief Yeoman Zakeyia E. Vickers will henceforth be known, referred,
In time honored tradition, a name change like no other took place at Navy Medicine Readiness and Training Command (NMRTC) Bremerton, November 19, 2021.

Chief Hospital Corpsman Benjamin R. Chapin, Chief Personnel Specialist Chia W. Hu, Chief Hospital Corpsman Julius M. Ramirez and Chief Yeoman Zakeyia E. Vickers will henceforth be known, referred, and addressed as ‘chief.’

Chapin, Hu, Ramirez and Vickers were all promoted in an official pinning ceremony in front of family, friends, a fellowship of NMRTC Bremerton Chief Mess brothers and sisters, and staff to the rank of U.S. Navy chief petty officer.

“I am absolutely delighted to be here to pin these four outstanding Sailors. All have worked very hard to be here. And it’s not over. Like the mountain climber who crests one hill, there’s another following,” said Capt. Patrick Fitzpatrick, Naval Hospital/NMRTC Bremerton commanding officer and keynote speaker.

“I was asked to talk about leadership. To be a leader is to give of oneself,” continued Fitzpatrick, “I value honesty, integrity, toughness, dedication. You’re part of a team. No one gets here alone. It takes trust, discipline and self-motivation as you continue to step up your game. You are also entrusted in care of our Sailors. They look to you for advice and direction.”

The pinning ceremony is a culmination of the chief transition process – a six week long affair – which included a host of training, assignments and hard work, while simultaneously teaching leadership, establishing esprit de corps, promoting unity, and building teamwork. There was group physical fitness routines, multiple lessons to further enhance knowledge on naval heritage, shared wisdom on tackling myriad issues and concerns, along with also participating in core values discussions centered on honor, courage and commitment, leadership and teamwork training.

The newly pinned chief learned early that they were becoming part of a truly unique military enlisted classification, for there is no other armed force which has a rank equivalent to that of a chief in the United States Navy.

All armed forces have two classes of rank with enlisted and commissioned. Yet the United States Navy has the distinction of having an additional class of service with the bureau appointed chief petty officer. This is what makes the title of ‘chief’ even more distinctive. Although the paygrades E-7 through E-9 are equivalent to those of other services, the Navy is considered distinctive in that it confers much more authority and responsibility on those whom are deemed worthy of becoming a Navy chief, while demanding more professional performance and practiced proficiency than any other Department of Defense branch of service.

“We are incredibly grateful to have you on our team. Becoming a chief is a culmination of hard work and training,” remarked Fitzpatrick.
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