(Via Ho’okele News)
Story and photo by MC2 Diana Quinlan
Navy Public Affairs Support Element West, Det. Hawaii
Navy Munitions Command East Asia Division (NMC EAD) held a change of command ceremony on Aug. 14 aboard the Battleship Missouri Memorial, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam (JBPHH).
Capt. Edward M. Galvin relieved Capt. Michael J. Singleton as commanding officer during the official ceremony.
During the ceremony, Capt. Mark Springer, commander NMC and NMC Pacific, served as the guest speaker and Navy Chaplain Cmdr. Jeffery Logan, commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet, provided the invocation. JBPHH Honors and Ceremonial Guard presented the colors.
Singleton took command of NMC EAD Hawaii in April of 2012. As a commanding officer of the East Asia Division, he oversaw operations in support of fleet units and operational forces in the U.S. Pacific Fleet Area of Responsibility (AOR) with subsidiary detachments in Sasebo and Yokosuka as well as units in Guam, Okinawa, Atsugi and Misawa and Diego Garcia annex.
“I did not have this vision for myself, it was a dream I didn’t dare to dream — leading a major command on my final leg of my soon-to-be-ending 38-year naval career,” Singleton said. “But once I got in the seat, I realized it was unquestionably the best job I ever had, and I don’t know if I will ever top it.”
Singleton spoke of his duties and the importance he placed on making sure that his Sailors and civilians were taken care of.
“It was very important for me to keep the command operational, keep the staff manned at proper numbers and provide outstanding service throughout our units and detachments,” said Singleton about his time at the command.
“I made sure I was always available. And seeing my Sailors being promoted or commissioned, and civilian employees being promoted and recognized is most memorable to me. This position was not about me, it was about the people I worked with.”
Singleton began his carrier in the Navy in October 1976 as an enlisted Sailor, advancing in the service to a high-ranking officer. Over the years he actively participated in the Mustang Round-Up Limited Duty Officer and Chief Warrant Officer recruiting drives, leading by example, helping and guiding Sailors to success in their military careers. Sailors under his command praised him for his leadership.
“We have probably the most supportive chain of command a Sailor can ask for,” said Information System Technician 2nd Class Derek Pebler. “We are a small command, so we saw Capt. Singleton every day and he always showed utmost care for his personnel, always making sure we are safe and secure and enjoy our work. I cannot think of a better CO.”
Singleton is planning to retire later this year, making NMC EAD Hawaii his last tour. “I feel that I accomplished everything I could. [There are] few more things that I would have liked to accomplish but it is time for me to go and Capt. Galvin can take charge and carry on.”
According to Singleton, his relief is more than capable of doing the job, “I believe, Capt. Galvin is a great leader and I have no concerns in passing the command to him. He is a great officer and I fully expect him to lead and exceed every expectation. He will have a great staff to support him and he will be successful.”
During presentation of awards, Springer presented Singleton with a Legion of Merit Medal for outstanding services and achievements.
Upon receiving his award, Singleton, as his final act as a commanding officer, surprised two of his Sailors by awarding Logistics Specialist 1st Class Alvin Norman with the Navy/Marine Corps Commendation Medal, and Yeomen 2nd Class Ciatta Tucker with the Navy/ Marine Corps Achievement Medal.
In his farewell remarks, Singleton thanked his command and his Sailors and civilian employees, emphasizing their importance to success of the command and the Navy as a whole.
“I thank you all for your support and dedication,” said Singleton. “But also for the goodwill with which you have performed your duty. Fair winds and following seas to you all.”
After the reading of official orders, Galvin said he was honored to relieve Singleton as commanding officer and promised the unit would continue to build on his legacy.
“I do not think you could find a better place to hold a naval change of command than on the mighty Missouri,” said Galvin in his address.
“Capt. Singleton, I would like to thank you for the full support you have provided me through my transition here at East Asia Division. I know I have big shoes to fill, however, I am confident that NMC EAD will continue to excel based on the high standards, good example and leadership you have provided during your tenure.”
Galvin also addressed the men and women of the command as their new leader.
“I am proud to have the opportunity to lead this command. I look forward to working with each of you as we support the extremely important mission of providing fleet ordnance support to our warfighters based throughout our area of responsibility,” said Galvin.
“Based upon the professionalism, competence, determination and drive that I have witnessed throughout the command, I am confident that we will not only handle any challenges that may come over the horizon, but excel at the important mission we have been entrusted to carry out.”
Galvin plans to dedicate his first steps as commanding officer to familiarizing with command functions and learning about its challenges, as well as establishing good rapport with Sailors and civilian employees under his leadership.
NMC EAD Hawaii is responsible for ordnance delivery to ships, submarines and aviation squadrons based in Japan, Hawaii, Diego Garcia and Guam. Command’s mission is to provide command, control and administrative support to NMC EAD units and detachments, which provide quality and responsive logistics, expert technical and material support of ammunition management and ordnance system components to the Fleet customer.