Oak Hill Sailors Reenlist Aboard 'Old Ironsides'

Story Number: NNS030714-12Release Date: 7/14/2003 2:18:00 PM
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By Journalist 2nd Class (SW) Brandan Schulze, USS Oak Hill Public Affairs

BOSTON (NNS) -- In its 205th year, USS Constitution made her annual Salute to the Nation Turnaround Cruise on Independence Day.

After "Old Ironsides" returned to its berth, Yeoman 1st Class Marcus D. Jackson of Washington, Ga., and Chief Signalman Gregory J. Duncan of Hickory, N.C., came aboard to reenlist and pledge a few more years of service to the U.S. Navy.

Both Sailors are stationed aboard USS Oak Hill (LSD 51), which is in town for the 22nd Annual Boston Harborfest.

Duncan said this reenlistment would be his last, taking him up to his 20-year mark. For Jackson, his three-year reenlistment will take him to 18 years.

Jackson said the port visit in Boston gave him the perfect chance to reenlist aboard a ship that was so well known for its part in naval history.

"It was a wonderful experience. I couldn't have imagined a better opportunity," said Jackson.

Other Sailors aboard the "Nation's Protector" were on hand to witness the reenlistment and were very impressed with the patriotic event.

"I can't think of a better place to reenlist on the Fourth of July," said Personnelman 3rd Class Robert Bridges, who saw the ship for the first time.

It was also the first trip to Constitution for Cmdr. John L. Bryant, Oak Hill's commanding officer. Bryant served as the reenlisting officer for the ceremony, and said he was very impressed with how great the ship looks and the professionalism of the crew.

"It was a huge thrill for me to be standing on the deck of history performing one of my favorite official duties - reenlisting great Sailors. Not to mention, my wife was pesent. I believe this will rank amongst my top 20 Navy memories."

After the reenlistment, the command master chief of Constitution presented the two reenlistees with expended shells from the cannons of the world's oldest commissioned war ship.

For information about USS Constitution, visit www.ussconstitution.navy.mil.

For related news, visit the USS Oak Hill (LSD 51) Navy NewsStand page at www.news.navy.mil/local/lsd51.

USS Constitution (“Old Ironsides”), the oldest commissioned warship afloat, makes her annual 4th of July “turnaround cruise” in Boston Harbor
Official U.S. Navy file photo of USS Constitution making its annual July 4th turnaround cruise in the Boston Harbor. Two USS Oak Hill (LSD 52) Sailors had the opportunity to reenlist aboard the Navy's oldest commissioned warship.
July 11, 2002
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