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Navy’s 245th Birthday Celebration goes BIG in Texas …The Big Screen That Is

by Ens. Nathan Winn, NIOC Texas Public Affairs Officer
15 October 2020 During a year in which the COVID-19 pandemic has created unique challenges, Sailors from Navy Information Operations Command (NIOC) Texas found a way to celebrate their heritage at a physically distant Navy Day Ball event.

The NIOC Texas Navy Day Ball Committee recognized that hosting an event this year would require extra ingenuity, and they collectively rose to the occasion. “In July, the Navy Day Ball Committee decided to create a presentation that could be played virtually to the command,” said Chief Cryptologic Technician (Networks) Ryan Kearney, who chaired the committee. “Somebody proposed playing it at a drive-in and the idea took off from there.”

Hosted at the Stars and Stripes drive-in theater in New Braunfels, TX, the family-friendly evening featured a presentation including a special message from Chief of Naval Operations, Adm. Michael Gilday, door prizes, and the screening of the movie ‘Midway’.

Executive Officer, Cmdr. Meredith Schley stated the importance of continuing the event despite difficult circumstances.

“NIOC Texas unit cohesion and morale has suffered under the COVID-19 pandemic restrictions,” Schley said. “The NIOC Texas Navy Day Ball Committee thought creatively to host an event that would allow us to collectively come together to recognize our Service’s history and heritage. The excited undertone around the command in anticipation of the Navy Day Ball is something that until now has been missing all of 2020.”

Sailors throughout the command voiced their appreciation for the opportunity to relax and enjoy a night of commemoration and celebration.

“With COVID-19 going on I’ve missed going to the movies with my friends and being able to hang out with shipmates outside of work,” said Cryptologic Technician (Interpretive) Third Class Aisling O’Beirne. Thank you to the Navy Day Ball Committee for putting this together.”

NIOC Texas conducts information operations and provides cryptologic and related capability to the fleet, joint and national commanders, as well as administrative and personnel support to Department of the Navy members assigned to the San Antonio area. NIOC Texas is a subordinate command of U.S. Fleet Cyber Command and comprises Task Force 1040 of the U.S. 10th Fleet.

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