Military notes

Navy officer in the spotlight

CAMP LEMONNIER, Djibouti – Petty Officer First Class Natasha Williams, a native of Marietta, is an Aviation Structural Mechanic in charge of safety operations, and was recognized as the Camp Lemonnier Member in the Spotlight, Sept. 9, 2019. Located in an austere environment, Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti is a U.S. Navy base located in the Horn of Africa and is the only enduring U.S. military base on the continent of Africa.

“I am extremely proud of Petty Officer Williams and congratulate her on her nomination as the Camp Lemonnier Member in the Spotlight,” said Master Chief Andy Gray, command master chief of Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti. “It’s not easy being deployed from home to an environment like the one we have here, but Petty Officer Williams exemplifies the Navy’s core values of honor, courage and commitment and is an outstanding representative of our command and our nation.”

Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti provides, operates, and sustains superior service in support of combat readiness and security of ships, aircraft, detachments and personnel for regional and combatant command requirements, enabling operations and providing stability in the Horn of Africa while fostering positive U.S.-African Nations relations.

Williams, a 2007 graduate of Warren Local High School, credits her success in the Navy to many of the lessons learned growing up in Marietta.

“Professionally, I have been able to expand my knowledge with safety and how ground safety operates,” said Williams. “It has also allowed me to step outside of the aviation community to learn something new.”

A key element of the Navy that the nation needs is tied to the fact that America is a maritime nation, and that the nation’s prosperity is dependent upon the ability to operate freely on the world’s oceans. More than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface is covered by water, 80 percent of the world’s population lives near a coast, and 90 percent of all global trade by volume travels by sea.

“We demand the highest standards from our sailors both professionally and personally,” said Capt. Ken Crowe, commanding officer of Camp Lemmonier, Djibouti. “Petty Officer Williams is the epitome of these standards and his exemplary behavior is an example of how all military members should carry themselves every day as an ambassador of the United States of America at home and abroad.”

Though there are many ways for sailors to earn distinction in their command, community and career, Williams is most proud of receiving a master’s degree of science in clinical psychology.

“School, in addition to long active duty days, took so much time away from family and friends,” said Williams. “Mustering the strength to work through it all paid off in the end.”

Williams comes from three generations of military service but is the first in her family to join the Navy.

As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied-upon assets, Williams and other sailors stationed at Camp Lemonnier know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes providing the Navy the nation needs.

“I love learning new things,” said Williams. “I am most proud of writing and implementing Camp Lemonnier’s first Confined Space Program and I also enjoy mentoring others service members.”