USS Patriot Awarded Sixth Consecutive Battle “E” 
By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Devon Dow Navy Pubic Affairs Support Element West Det. Japan  
PACIFIC OCEAN – Commander, Naval Surface Forces announced mine countermeasures ship USS Patriot (MCM 7) is the winner of the 2011 Battle Effectiveness (Battle “E”) Award for Commander, Mine Countermeasures Squadron Seven, Feb. 28.

This is Patriot’s sixth consecutive year winning the Battle “E”, one of the Navy’s most prestigious command awards. The Battle "E" recognizes superior operational performance, assessing the command's accomplishments during training exercises and various command inspections. Patriot’s continued success serves as an exemplary model of surface warfare excellence in the Navy’s forward deployed forces.

“This crew demonstrates an intense drive to accomplish the mission, no matter whether it’s operational or an assessment and no matter what other distracting challenges might lay on the path to completion,” commented Lt. Cmdr. Suzanne L. Schang, Patriot’s commanding officer. “Failure is simply not an option for the crew of Patriot. This award – and the five before it - recognizes that incredible quality in these Sailors.”

Along with the 2011 Battle “E”, Patriot was awarded its thirteenth consecutive Maritime Warfare Excellence Award, sixth Command, Control, Communications and Information Warfare Excellence Award, fifth Engineering/Survivability Excellence Award, and its first Logistics Management Excellence Award.

“I am very proud of this crew, the awards are well deserved,” said Lt. Cmdr. Jonathan Hopkins, Patriot’s executive officer. “Being awarded Battle “E” requires a lot of hard work throughout the year and for Patriot to receive it for the sixth time is an example of the crew’s dedication to excellence.”

In 2011, Patriot executed an aggressive basic phase training cycle, certifying in Maintenance and Material Management, ULTRA-C, ULTRA-E, Supply Management Certification and Antiterrorism Force Protection. Patriot achieved these certifications while completing mine countermeasure centric exercises, Clear Horizon 2011 and Annual Exercise (ANNUALEX) 2011.

For Mineman 2nd Class (SW) Derek Smith, the 2011 Battle “E” marks the fourth consecutive year he has been apart of the Patriot’s success. He said he is proud of the ship’s accomplishments.

“I cannot think of any ship that has done what Patriot has, six Battle “E” awards in a row is pretty special,” he added. “It feels good know that you are apart of a crew that has accomplished so much, it is something I’ll always remember.”

The Battle “E” competition is conducted to strengthen individual command performance, overall force readiness, and to recognize outstanding performance within the naval surface force.

Patriot is currently on a Mine Countermeasures Partnership Patrol in the 7th Fleet area of operations and is one of four mine countermeasure ships forward deployed from Sasebo, Japan.
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