SANTA RITA, Guam -- Hundreds of Guam-based Sailors and guests celebrated the U.S. Navy’s 244th birthday during the annual Navy Birthday Ball Oct. 12, at the Dusit Thani Guam Resort in Tumon.
Retired Fleet Master Chief JoAnn Ortloff took to the stand as the night’s guest speaker, where she reminded the crowd of the great progress the Navy has made since its establishment in 1775 – from battle readiness and innovation to humanitarian aid and peace.
“Every generation of Sailors builds upon those who have gone before them, who mastered their crafts,” Ortloff said. “That’s how we have become the strongest Navy in the greatest nation in the world. You are a part of that legacy.”
Ortloff encouraged the Sailors to find what inspires them to uphold the sacrifice and commitment it takes to be in the Navy, and left them with 10 lessons learned over her 33 years of naval service:
- Don’t wait for things to happen to you. Make them happen for you.
- Words matter. Choose them wisely because they cannot be taken back.
- Do the right thing because people are watching, and are learning about your character through your behavior.
- Challenge the process, but not the authority, and recognize the difference. Encourage others to do the same.
- Change is good for the sake of improvement. Not for the sake of change.
- Find a part of “yes” in every “no.” If everyone accepted the “no,” there wouldn’t be innovation or second chances.
- It's easier to get on a negative bandwagon than a positive one because someone else is doing the driving, but take the wheel, change the direction, and drive.
- If you are not having fun, you are doing it wrong.
- We get what we raise, so raise wisely.
- Sometimes, we have to fail to know great success, as long as the failures were not intentional.
U.S. Naval Base Guam (NBG) Commanding Officer Capt. Jeffrey Grimes reflected on the Navy’s meaningful heritage and critical mission.
“What a tremendous event to celebrate our Navy’s 244th birthday,” Grimes said. “Fleet Master Chief Ortloff’s inspiring remarks are in keep with the Navy’s core values of honor, courage, and commitment, and serve as a reminder that we must remain steadfast in our efforts to keep our rich Navy traditions alive, while ensuring we are always ready to meet the current and future challenges to our national defense.”