Navy Dads

Bill Harper
  • Male
  • Chicago, IL
  • United States
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Started this discussion. Last reply by Chuck Sep 4, 2017. 4 Replies

I have a question. My son has been over in Japan for a little over a year. He is due for a leave in January. My wife and I want to purchase his airline tickets. What is the easiest way to do that?

NAVY NEX store at GL.

Started this discussion. Last reply by NavyDads CoAdmin Jim Gramza Apr 6, 2016. 3 Replies

Ok, I have a question. I am a U.S. Army Vietnam veteran. I called up there at GL this morning. They told me that you can only shop at the NEX store if you are a retired veteran or if you are totally…Continue

SR pictures for graduation

Started this discussion. Last reply by NavyDads CoAdmin Jim Gramza Mar 31, 2016. 5 Replies

My wife and I read on navydads that in the 4th week of basic, recruits get their pictures taken for graduation. Are these pictures available for purchase by parents and, if so, how can we inquire…Continue

General questions about recruit training

Started this discussion. Last reply by NavyDads Admin (Paul) Mar 31, 2016. 6 Replies

My son started his recruit training on 3-1-16. I am trying to get a couple of questions answered. I would like to know when we can expect to get the form letter the RTC is supposed to send out to the…Continue


Bill Harper's Page

Profile Information

Your Sailor's First Name (Please Do Not Post SEAL Names)
What Is Or Will Be Your Sailor's Rating (Job Classification) - ex. ABE, AM, GM, etc
I believe he will be in Firefighting/Damage Control
Describe A Little About Yourself (your IP address/location will be checked::
I am a retired Vietnam veteran, four years in the Army.
Served in 1967-68
Prior Military Experience
Proud Army Veteran
What Brought You To This Site:
My son is recently enlisted (before PIR)
What Were Your Feelings When Your Sailor Joined The Navy:
First of all, PROUD! My son is 21 and I a
Have mixed feelings--proud, a little nervous, a little afraid for him but I am glad he made the decision on his own to join the Navy.
What Is Your Relationship With Your Sailor
Please Share: How Did You Find Us?
My wife found this website through Navy Moms.

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Posted on April 27, 2016 at 4:09pm 1 Comment

I just looked at my countdown clock on my phone. 1 day, 17 hours until my son graduates from basic training at G.L. My wife and I can hardly wait for Friday, April 29th to get her Here!

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At 6:20pm on September 28, 2017, NavyDads CoAdmin Jim Gramza said…

Bill, you might start here for a less expensive flight

At 5:34pm on August 12, 2016, NavyDads Admin (Paul) said…
At 10:34am on March 12, 2016, Navy Dads Co-Admin Tom said…

Hi Bill....Welcome to Navy Dads! First let me thank you for your Service! You must be very proud of Matt. Explore the site. There is a lot that you can learn about what he will be going through. Check out the Boot Camp group.....plenty of videos and information for you! I wish Matt the best as he begins his journey!

At 10:13pm on March 11, 2016, NavyDads Admin (Paul) said…

Welcome to Bill ! When my daughter enlisted in 2005 and left for RTC, I had virtually no knowledge of Navy life or how the Navy did things. By the time her PIR rolled around, I was starting to get the hang of things and understand some of the language and abbreviations, but still felt like a fish out of water when dealing with most topics concerning the US Navy. When my son enlisted and left for Great Lakes in 2007, I got serious about trying to learn as much as possible about the Navy. Now, several years into my journey, I’m blessed to say I have two sailors in the family - my son Eric (AM2) was on the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71), was attached to Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 37 (HSM-37) in Hawaii, was attached to VAW-125, and just transfered to VRC-40 ("Rawhides"). My daughter Kat is now a Navy veteran and was stationed on the carrier Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) as a Mass Communications Specialist(MC3). If were around in those early days, it would have made my first days as a Navy parent much easier!

I'm sure you'll find as useful, educational and informative as I have over the past few years. Click How To Get Started for a guide on getting going in your experience! I hope you take the time to explore the site and make some new friends. Read the discussions and add your comments. Browse through the postings in the various groups or start a new one. If you have any comments, questions or concerns about your sailor and what he is going sure to post them! In my experience someone here can answer your questions or concerns or can point you in the direction to find out. And Bill this is a great place to brag as well! So join in, get active, and be sure to let us know how your son is doing! Please remember that we talk about the Navy here and we must keep the security and safety of our sailors and the fleet in mind. On the right or starboard side of every NavyDads page is an area we call Key Information. Please take a minute and read through the Operations Security (OPSEC) link for some guidelines as to what we should not talk about in a public forum like

As a parent of a sailor currently or soon to be at Great Lakes you'll have many questions about what Matthew is going through. In the Navy Bootcamp group is a discussion called A MUST READ for all New Navy Parents. Read through this post as it will do a lot to give you some understanding about what your sailor is learning and why. And be sure to check out the videos available in the Bootcamp Group as well and as PIR nears be sure to spend time in the PIR group for hints and helps!

Best Regards- Paul

At 10:02pm on March 11, 2016, NavyDads CoAdmin Jim Gramza said…

Hey Bill!

DC or Damage Controlman is a rate. Rate = job. Here is a link to a description of his rate:

At 9:58pm on March 11, 2016, NavyDads CoAdmin Jim Gramza said…

Welcome aboard to Bill! When my son first enlisted, I was a little scared and worried for him. Not coming from a military family at all, I had no idea what to expect. What I found out was that he had made the most mature decision of his life! I found lots of answers to my questions right here on

My son Stephen was an AWO2 on the P-3 Orion. However, after 6 years of service, he was medically discharged in July of 2014. We are proud of our son and his service to our country.

If you are attending PIR, there is a very large meet and greet for all the moms and dads  at the Sundance Saloon, 300 Lakehurst Rd., Waukegan, IL 60085. It starts at 5:00pm Chicago time.

Join us on Facebook too!

Once again, welcome to our site and I hope you enjoy your stay here. GO NAVY! HOOYAH!

Best Regards- Jim



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