The Commander of the Naval Air Force Atlantic announced Thursday the selection of Aviation Boatswain’s Mate 1st Class Tinisha K. Franklin and Naval Air Crewman (Helicopter) 1st Class Brian P. McGarrigle as Sea and Shore Sailors of the Year.
Rear Admiral J.R. Haley, Commander, Naval Air Force Atlantic, highly praised both Sailors for their outstanding accomplishments. They were selected from nine other candidates representing more than 40,000 men and women serving in the Naval Air Force Atlantic.
“All nine Sailors standing up here today are already winners. They all represent the absolute very best of the naval aviation community. Each year, when we gather for these selections, it becomes an exceptionally more difficult decision to choose the finalists,” said Rear Admiral J.R. Haley.
Franklin is a Brooklyn native and entered recruit training in the Navy in August 2003. She was assigned to the USS Theodore Roosevelt after graduating from recruitment training and completing Aviation Boatswain Mate (AB) “A” school.
Franklin is now assigned to the Norfolk based nuclear powered aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman as an aircraft launch and recovery equipment quality assurance inspector in the Air Department V-2 Division. The ship is on deployment in support of Operation Inherent Freedom.
After the award ceremony, Franklin said, “We made it! For all my brothers and sisters in the competition and from the AIRLANT staff who made this week possible; For all the Sailors who have inspired me to this place, for their hard work, dedication and constancy. It is the highest honor to be able to represent my command out there supporting the mission! But it is great to look over and see my beautiful family and friends there as they have been from the beginning. This is one of the greatest feelings ever.
McGarrigle, originally from Palm Harbor, Florida, enlisted in the Navy in July 2006 and completed recruit training in January 2007. He completed training to become a Naval Air Crewman and is currently assigned to the “Airwolves” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron Forty (HSM 40) at Naval Station Mayport in Jacksonville, Florida, where he is the Operations Department Leading Petty Officer and Master Training Specialist on the MH-60R “Seahawk” helicopter.
“It is an honor to be selected, but even more of an honor to get to know the other finalists this week”, said McGarrigle. “This award is so much more than an individual award. I want to thank all my leadership and Sailors that helped me get here and a special thanks to my parents and my amazing wife Arriane,” McGarrigle said.
Both Sailors will advance to the next selection process to determine the Sailors of the Year for U.S. Fleet Forces Command.