ABOARD USS HARRY S. TRUMAN, At Sea (NNS) -- I love you too, dad,” is not a phrase you hear often in a room as ominous sounding as the "war room," but recently, love and pride filled the normally tense setting.
One USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) Sailor experienced something that few ever have. In a ceremony attended by numerous well wishers, Aviation Electronics Technician 2nd Class Jason February of Sea Operational Detachment, was reenlisted for six years by his father, Marine Col. Bill February, commanding officer, Headquarters and Service Battalion Marine Forces Pacific, through a video teleconference.
“It was a great opportunity, and I’m really glad it happened,” beamed the younger February, trying to fight back an ever-growing smile.
As happy as he was, his father was even prouder to have been able to watch his son continue his career.
“This is a proud moment,” he said, his eye sparkling through the monitor. “I look at my son, and I can’t even describe the feeling. When you watch your child grow, you hope for the best, and when you see the result, the only thing to feel is pride. If his mother was here, she’d be in tears.”
While waiting for the ceremony to begin, father and son were able to speak, and even though neither was alone, they were able to share some candid stories and precious childhood events. The most talked about however, was of course, the idea of a Marine’s son enlisting in the Navy.
“It’s a funny story,” laughed the elder February, “We were sitting around the dinner table discussing my PCS (permanent change of station) to Guantanamo Bay (Cuba). The only comment he made was, ‘Who’s going to enlist me?’” Trying to fight back the laughter, he bellowed, “Enlist you in what?”
Although the ceremony went off flawlessly, there were initial doubts that it would happen at all.
“I really thought this wasn’t going to happen,” said the younger February. “The plan was to have him fly out here... he asked if we had VTC capability. I told him we did, but I didn’t think it was going to be possible. Well, he found the captain’s email address, and he started the process from there.”
As the events winded down, the colonel left his son with a few words of encouragement.
“If you need anything, give me a call,” he said slowly, trying to prolong the moment. “Go Navy, beat Army,” he chuckled. “I love you.”
For related news, visit the USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) Navy NewsStand page at www.news.navy.mil/local/cvn75.