Friday, September 13, 2013

U.S. Navy Lieutenant Commander James Hoeft going ashore ... thanks for 20 years of service

The Watch
Aye mates, for 20 years
This Sailor has stood the watch.

While some of us were in our bunks at night
Seaman Hoeft stood the watch

While some of us were in school learning our trade
Electronics Technician Third Class Hoeft stood the watch

In those years when the storm clouds of war were seen
brewing on the horizon of history,
Ensign Hoeft stood the watch

Many times he would cast an eye ashore
and see his family standing there
Needing his guidance and help
Needing that hand to hold during those hard times
But Lieutenant Junior Grade Hoeft stood the watch

He stood the watch for twenty years
He stood the watch so that we, our families and
Our fellow countrymen, could sleep soundly in safety,
Each and every night,
Knowing that Lieutenant Hoeft stood the watch

Today, we are here to say
Shipmate ... the watch stands relieved
Relieved by those you have trained, guided, and led
Lieutenant Commander Hoeft, you stand relieved
We have the watch!

 Boatswain, stand by to pipe the side, shipmate going ashore!

Jim Hoeft sits at the Governor's conference table in Richmond.
Lieutenant Governor Bill Bolling's 4th Annual Bloggers Day 
February 16, 2011

We know him as Jim or JR who was the founder of Bearing Drift and now has founded Virginia Politics On Demand, recruiting top-notch bloggers to help provide news and information to the Virginia blogosphere. He has covered Republican Advances, Eric Cantor's Republican Roundup, candidate events, interviewed elected officials and those running for office, and fill in for radio personalities. That is the Jim I've known since 2006.

Jim's other career was as an officer in the U.S. Navy and, in a ceremony in Virginia Beach on Friday, September 13, 2013, he retired after 20 years of service.

His Naval career began in 1992 at the Recruit Training Center in Orlando, Florida. From 1992-93 he was at Nuclear Power Training Command in Orland, and in 1993-94 part of Nuclear Power Training Unit in Charleston, SC. He ended up in Newport News, Va, from 1994-96 with the PCU Cheyenne (SSN 773). He spent 1996-99 at Old Dominion University NROTC, 2000 in Surface Warfare Officers School in Newport, RI, and returned to the USS Mitscher (DDG 57) from 2000-02 and the USS Ponce (LPD 15) from 2002-03.

Jim found his niche in public affairs:
2003-06: U.S. Fleet Forces Command
TAD: Hurricane Katrina
Navy Expedition Combat Command

2006-07: Navy Personnel Development Command

2007-08: Navy Public Affairs Support Element
TAD: Amphibious Squadron 8 embarked

2008-11: Joint Public Affairs Support Element
TAD: Operation Assured Delivery
Operation Odyssey Dawn embarked USS MOUNT WHITNEY (LCC 20)
Pakistan Flood Relief
Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill

2011-13: Maritime Civil Affairs and Security Training Command
IA: United Nations Stabilization Mission in Haiti
Congratulations to our friend and colleague with best wishes for the next chapter in his life and a sincere thank you for 20 years of service to our country.

Cross-posted at Virginia Politics On Demand

Photo by Lynn R. Mitchell

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