ABOARD USS HARRY S. TRUMAN, At Sea (NNS) -- For many Sailors, the Navy is a great way to travel around the world, see different places and explore different cultures they would not see otherwise. The Navy also provides the excitement and responsibility of being stationed and serving in places where only a handful are selected to go.
Hospital Corpsman 1st Class (FMF/SW/AW) Faron Craig was recently selected for one of these memorable assignments. She has been chosen to fill an independent duty corpsman billet at Camp David, starting early next year.
As an independent duty corpsman aboard USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), Craig is the divisional leading petty officer in HST's Medical Department and takes great pride in the opportunity that has been presented to her.
"I was equal parts excited, scared, and nervous," she said. "I feel that most of my peers are also excited for me."
Originally called Shangri-La, Camp David was established by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt atop the Catoctin Mountains in Maryland. It is essentially a quiet and relaxing retreat that is meant to offer the President privacy, brief periods of respite and the opportunity to "see the whole world very clearly."
During times of conflict and strife, from the conduct of World War II to the volatile incidents of international terrorism in the 1980's, it has offered the solitude and tranquility essential for presidential decisions.
Over its history, a majority of the presidents have also used Camp David to host visiting foreign leaders, with Prime Minister Winston Churchill of Great Britain being the first during May 1943.
This, however, will not be the first time Craig has been placed in a unique situation that has allowed her to travel where few Navy Sailors have.
During HST's shipyard availability, Craig was sent to Vietnam on a reconnaissance mission of sorts. Working with the Vietnamese government and their military, Craig and was sent to recover the remains of a Navy pilot that had been missing in action since the Vietnam War.
For her, it was an extremely memorable experience.
"There is total excitement in knowing that by finding the remains of somebody missing in action, you can bring closure to that person's living relatives," she said.
As a corpsman, Craig shows her intense devotion to her job and always looks forward to helping people.
"My long term goal is to eventually do a humanitarian mission in South America," she said. "My desire is not only to help heal but also to learn about different cultures and different people."
Even though Craig is looking forward to her new position at Camp David, she feels bittersweet about leaving HST and its crew behind.
"I feel great about leaving but also sad because I see HST doing great things during deployment that I would like to be a part of," she said. "I also feel that each person on board is a fiber to the tapestry that shows the world that we are definitely a force to be reckoned with."
For more news from USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75), go to the HST NewsStand page at www.news.navy.mil/local/cvn75.