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Too many honors and recognition come too late.

It's nice to see some that beat the curve.

Meet Chief Petty Officer David Eberhart.

Honorary Chief David Eberhart, USN.



My fellow Chiefs,

I wanted to share with you this picture as well as a short synopsis of how it came about.

AO1 David Eberhart (pictured) is terminally ill with cancer. I was his Chief for his first tour on the USS INDEPENDENCE and even then his goal in the Navy was to be a Chief Petty Officer. His career, though very successful, has been interrupted with cancer treatment, periods of remission and finally with the news of being terminal.

He is currently assigned to MALS-24 at Kbay. A few months ago he requested to see the MCPON [Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy - the Navy's senior enlisted sailor. -ed.]. MCPON Campa happened to be on the island visiting and went to the hospital to see AO1. It was explained to him [MCPON] how badly AO1 wanted to be a Chief and that he even took the Chief's exam from the hospital during a three day period -- he didn't have the strength for more than an hour at a time. On his good days he would put on his uniform and make his way to work though the time there took a severe toll on him physically.

He did not make board as he was six-points shy. It was requested by PACFLT Chiefs that AO1 be made an Honorary Chief Petty Officer. We talked about it in Newport and MCPON was in concurrence. The intent was for MCPON himself to make the presentation.

News came this week that AO1 Eberhart may not make it through the weekend as his health is rapidly declining. FLTCM Tom Howard along with a ton of Chiefs (including CMDCM Don Krampert from CPRW-2) from the area banded together to make this happen as quickly as possible. On Thursday, AO1 David Eberhart was designated an Honorary Chief Petty Officer.

I personally called and talked to Chief David Eberhart following his promotion Thursday and the excitement in his voice came with a strength and commitment that cannot be explained in words. He remembered well our time on the INDY but his short term memory is fading quickly.

Chief Eberhart's terminal prognosis remains listed in days. He is married with two children.

Thank you for all you do.

V/r Aaron

Aaron A. Shipley
Sailor and Command Master Chief
Commander, Patrol and Reconnaissance GROUP

As of this writing, Chief Eberhart is still with us. Which is why I wanted to get this up.

H/t to a Senior Chief for letting me know, and High Five to the Chief community Goat Locker for getting it done. If a bunch of senior NCOs think it's the right thing to do - it usually is wise to go along with them.

26 Comments

Thanks, John.
 
Sorry I didn't see an e-mail address for passing along congratulations directly. Please forward. Welcome to the Goat Locker, Chief Eberhart. It is an honor and a pleasure to have you with us. ETC J. A. Cook, USN Ret.
 
The only email addresses I have regarding this are official military addresses, which DoD prefers not to be published openly on the web. Rest assured, any good wishes will be made known to Chief Eberhart.
 
*sniff* GULP. Yeah, I've got a HUGE lump in my throat right now. Damn proud of you, Chief. DAMN proud.
 
Chief Eberhart, You are A FINE EXAMPLE OF REAL LEADERSHIP! Respectfully, "Grumpy"
 
Chief Eberhart, Congratulation, Chief Job Well Done. Frank Gentile USAF, MSGT (Ret)
 
Good on ya Chief!! Welcome to the Mess! God bless you and protect you. Once a Chief, always a Chief. DS Sep '90 - Korea!
 
John, that's a freakin' outstanding story!! Thanks for sharing that. As the son of a Command Master Chief, I know the honor that comes with being a Chief and what it meant to this man. Simply awesome.
 
Chief Eberhart - Your devotion, commitment and courage gives me pause to reflect on how fortunate we Americans are to have the best among us in the service of our nation. You have my sincerest admiration and appreciation! Chris Fleming USCGR
 
Chief Eberhart, Congrats, and welcome aboard. CTICM(NAC)
 
I am so happy and proud for Chief Eberhart! God Bless you Chief and thank you for your service!
 
OutSTANDING! In a world where the military is often shown as gun toting Neanderthals, this story shows to the world our community recognizes excellence in Spirit, Hope and Pride. Bravo Zulu to one and all. To Chief Eberhart, worry not about your family, we've got your six.
 
Never served myself, but everytime I read a story about the various militaries around the world they say that what distinguishes the American military and gives it it's strength is it's NCO's, and the amount of trust and respect accorded them by the officers. Here's an example of why they deserve it.
 
Never served myself, but everytime I read a story about the various militaries around the world they say that what distinguishes the American military and gives it it's strength is it's NCO's, and the amount of trust and respect accorded them by the officers. Here's an example of why they deserve it.
 
Well done, Chief. The Hat fits, and is fitting. Salute,
 
Nicely done, shipmate. Many thanks for the update. A quick aside regarding the AO rating. (And I hope the humor isn't too out of place.) I was stationed at NAS Pensacola, where the kids going through Aviation OCS were tagged as 'Aviation Officer Candidates' and had nametags with 'AOC Lastname.' They even wore little anchors on the collars of their khakis. Shortly afterwards, I was at Miramar talking to this 30-ish AOC. I initially thought, "wow, this guy certainly has his act together for a candidate, and is a bit older..." Fair winds! HM2 USNR
 
Outstanding...and humbling. Bless you Chief and congratulations. Well done!
 
...and following seas, Chief. Good on ya. Aloha oi, until we meet again. --cp, MSgt, USAF(ret)
 
John, I just today sent Cap'n Lex an email offering to pass on this very story, with pics, after he linked you. I couldn't see your post cause you're blocked in the daytime over here, dagnabit. Anyhoo, I see now that you have the full story posted, so I wanted to say thanks. Guys like Chief Eberhart, and the Chiefs that made this happen, exemplify today's CPO community and make us all stand a little taller. Welcome to the Mess, Chief! [I guess I have to be happy that apparently we're not blocked at night!]
 
This show's that the spirt is still there and remains within the CPO community BUT I never thought I would see a CPO referred to as a "Senior N.C.O." in what appears to be a navy communication (the originator of this document) - Senior N.C.O. is true in paygrade only but NEVER should a C.P.O. be referred to as an N.C.O. I can remember in the 60's being stationed with both the Air Force and Army trying to explain to them that we WERE NOT N.C.O.'s but C.P.O.'s and damn proud of it..We explained that we had to show our proficiency in our rate by examinaton to be promoted, not just put in the time........... but I guess things change, as the years slide by.
 
Congratulations AOC. Glad you made it. Vance Bennett MSTC USCGR
 
Mr. Dupuis - the retired Army guy who put the post up (that would be me) is one who made the characterization. You'll note in the blockquoted piece, Master Chief Shipley didn't do it. Your angst stems from the fact that I'm just a poster child for Goldwater-Nichols. But times have changed in ways you apparently aren't aware of either - senior Army non-commissioned officers have to show their proficiency, and are board selected for promotion, long gone are the days of just showing up for work waiting for someone to die or retire.
 
But times have changed in ways you apparently aren't aware of either - senior Army non-commissioned officers have to show their proficiency, and are board selected for promotion, long gone are the days of just showing up for work waiting for someone to die or retire.
John, you mean you guys copied the Marines?
 
Sigh. Pllbbbbbttttt!
 
Plebity? Is that a yes or a no? ; )
 
Congratulations, Sir!! God bless you. Thank you for serving our great nation.