SAN DIEGO -- Capt. Douglas Verissimo, the commanding officer of the amphibious transport dock ship USS New Orleans (LPD 18), announced the command’s Sailors of the Quarter (SOQ), Aug. 5.
The SOQ’s were as follows: Chief (select) Boatswain’s Mate Christopher Beach as the Senior Sailor of the Quarter, Ship’s Serviceman 2nd Class William Hodor as the Sailor of the Quarter, Operations Specialist 3rd Class Laura Olague as the Junior Sailor of the Quarter, and Electrician’s Mate Fireman Colton Merritt as the Blue Jacket of the Quarter.
“As my time comes to an end on board New Orleans, it gives me great pleasure to honor these Sailors for their hard work, professionalism, and outstanding military bearing,” said Verissimo. “They have all set the bar and contributed to our highest standards of New Orleans’ teamwork over the past few months and have earned their title as Sailors of the Quarter.”
The Sailor of the Year program was first established by the Navy in 1972 by the Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Elmo Zumwalt to recognize a Sailor for their aptitude and initiative to stand out amongst their shipmates.
“This was a title I was not expecting to receive,” said Hodor. “I would have never been able to get here without the outstanding work that my Sailors in Supply Department put in for me day after day.”
At the end of the year all selected Sailors of the Quarter will then stand before a board of selected committee members who will determine the command’s 2015 Sailors of the Year.
New Orleans is the second ship in Navy's San Antonio class of ships, designed to be the most survivable amphibious vessels. The fourth in the U.S. Navy fleet to bear the name, New Orleans was commissioned in March 2007.
The ship combines 21st century amphibious shipbuilding and warfighting technologies to support current and future Marine Corps aircraft and landing craft, and is capable of taking nearly 1,200 Sailors and Marines into harm's way.