Cmdr. Robert Bodvake stood on deck of the USS Momsen at Everett Naval Station and barked his first order to the deployed group "No Running". Strange you say, well he was speaking to a group of children age 6 to 12 who has either one or both parents in the military. They were on a "one day deployment of the USS Momsen".
The program, sponsored by the base's Fleet and Family Service Center and Child and Youth Programs help kids in military families understand their parents' roles in servng their country.
Navy firefighters manned a learn-by-doing station and children got to use the extinguisher to put out flames coming from a grill-like device. A nine year old was climbing the many stairs aboard the ship and exclaimed "I get seasick". Some completed a half mile run and some were working with the military dog handler.
Capping the ship's tour was a mock homecoming. The children lined the deck waving to their parents pretending to be heading back to port.
"Camp Deployment" is in it's second year and helps families understand what happens when their loved one sail off. Also the children see they aren't the only ones missing a parent that deploys. A sort of camaraderie.
The Everett Naval Station, the Jewel of the Military, proudly is home to the USS Abraham Lincoln and the USS Shoup.