CENTRAL COMMAND (NNS) -- During his week-long visit to the U.S. Central Command's area of responsibility, MCPON (Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy) (SS/AW) Terry Scott held a chief's call with a special surprise at Naval Support Activity Bahrain.
MCPON was accompanied by Vice Adm. Timothy J. Keating, commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/U.S. 5th Fleet, and Chief of Naval Operations Master Chief (SS/SW/AW) R. J. Chapman, force master chief U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/U.S. 5th Fleet.
MCPON began the chief's call by saying he had the authority to grant one thing. That one thing is the honorary rank of master chief petty officer, which he was granting to Keating.
"There is no man more deserving, who has demonstrated concern, care and respect for our Sailors and chief petty officers than Vice Adm. Keating," said Scott.
The granting of the honorary master chief rank came as a total surprise to Keating, whose initial response was "Holy Smokes!"
MCPON and Keating's wife, Wanda Lee, performed the traditional pinning of a master chief's anchors to the admiral's lapel. Keating then spoke about the previous day's visit to Iraq with MCPON. He said he saw despair and sadness, but also hope and joy of Iraqi men and women when they saw an American Sailor.
Keating noted that the visit to Iraq was special and then turned his attention back to his honorary promotion to master chief petty officer. "To be able to stand with you, not along side you, but with you as one of you, is an honor to which words cannot do justice," Keating concluded.
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