Sea Service Awards
Rear Adm. Frank Ponds (right), commander of Navy Region Hawaii and Naval Surface Group Middle Pacific, shakes hands with a Sailor at the 51st annual Sea Services Awards ceremony at the Ala Moana Hotel in Honolulu.
Sea Service Awards ceremony honors service members
Story and photo by MC3 Dustin W. Sisco, Navy Public Affairs Support Element West, Det. Hawaii

HONOLULU Sailors, Marines and Coast Guardsmen were honored at the Navy League of the United States Honolulu Council 51st annual Sea Service Awards ceremony and luncheon, sponsored by Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC) at the Ala Moana Hotel on Dec. 9.

The ceremony was held to recognize military men and women who have provided exemplary service and performance of duty. Officiating with the Navy League were Rear Adm. Frank Ponds, commander, Navy Region Hawaii, and Capt. Larry Hill, deputy commander, Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard.

After the parading of colors and opening remarks from Mel Ing, the president of the Honolulu Council, the service members were treated to a sandwich lunch buffet.

Rear Adm. Charles Ray, commander of the 14th Coast Guard District and keynote speaker of the event, spoke about the service members before the recipients received their awards.

“Two days ago, we gathered at Pearl Harbor in remembrance of the sacrifices and contributions of what has come to be known as the greatest generation,” Ray said. “As I participated in those remembrance ceremonies, I could not help but reflect on the contributions of the current generationthe very best of whom we will honor here today-and how you will be remembered 70 years from now. I’m not sure the name that history will give you and your generation, but I sincerely believe that you will be honored for the incredible sacrifices, courage and dedication in duty that you have demonstrated over the past decade and that you continue to demonstrate on a daily basis.”

After Ray’s speech, Bob McDermott, the master of ceremonies of the event, also gave a few words about his appreciation for the service and sacrifices of service members.

“It’s amazing that all of you young people, who knew well that when you got into this thing, you were going to go to war somewhere, still decided to re-enlist and do your duty,” McDermott said.

“Hopefully, it won’t be for too many more years,” McDermott added. “It is very comforting to know that you are all out there, so thank you.”

After the keynote speaker gave his speech and the master of ceremonies finished his personal anecdotes, Ing, Ray, Hill and Ponds gave the awards to the 38 recipients of the Sea Service awards.

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