Welcome to NavyDads.com Mark! 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, and is attached to VAW-125, and back on the USS Theodore Roosevelt. 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 NavyDads.com 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 NavyDads.com 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 NavyDads.com 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 through...be 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 Mark 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 NavyDads.com.
As a parent of a sailor currently or soon to be at Great Lakes you'll have many questions about what John-Matk 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!