A Memorial Day to Remember

By Lt. j.g. John M. Kaiser, CMTT OIC

Memorial Day weekend has come to signify the start of summer for many Americans and is often celebrated with blockbuster movies, cookouts with friends, and family vacations.  This past Memorial weekend was one of special meaning for a member of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11 who holds true the Navy’s core values of Honor, Courage, and Commitment.

Utilitiesman 1st Class Anthony Miller of Springfield, Ill. first enlisted in the Navy on February 6, 1996.  Miller’s previous duty stations include NAF Adak Alaska, NMCB-4, Great Lakes, Ill., NSA LaMaddalena Italy, and Stennis Space Center, Mississippi.  Miller has deployed six times throughout his career ranging from Puerto Rico to Afghanistan including an IA to Iraq with a U.S. Navy Seal Team.

Miller is currently a part of the Construction Management Training Team (CMTT) which is in direct support to the Regiment Combat Team (RCT) 5 Civil Affairs Group in the Helmand Province.   Miller is based out of forward operating base (FOB) Marjah in the Marjah District along the Helmand River Valley with a Civil Affairs Team (CAT). 

The CAT provides critical expertise and guidance to the Afghans in governance to help stabilize the local populace.  They also assess the need for critical infrastructure projects such as roads, clinics, schools, etc. Miller and the CMTT inspect projects to make sure the money is being spent wisely and the construction is being done correctly by the local nationals.  Afghan contractors are not versed in modern day techniques, therefore the CMTT is consistently providing guidance and training to ensure a long lifespan of what is being built.  Miller has been directly involved in eight projects worth over $2.5 million.

May 29, 2012 was a hot and dry day on the NMCB-11 Det site on Camp Dwyer.  It was a day of great honor and pride, and there was no better way to complete the Memorial Day weekend as Miller raised his right hand and re-enlisted, swearing an oath to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies. Miller’s four-year re-enlistment will take him to 20-years of service in the Navy and make him eligible to retire from active duty in the U.S. Navy.

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