By Ryan Labadens, Naval Construction Battalion Center Public Affairs
Master-at-Arms 2nd Class Gerard Naquin, leading petty officer for the Reserve security forces unit assigned to Navy Operational Support Center (NOSC) Gulfport, said that even with the limitations brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, his unit was still able to knock out AT requirements and help augment NCBC active duty and civilian security forces.
Part of the his team’s AT requirements include re-familiarization with various aspects of the military justice system, non-lethal and hand-to-hand combat training, weapons familiarization and practice at the NCBC security forces firearms training simulator.
“We also have a full day of live-fire training at the indoor range at Keesler (an Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi), shooting the M9 semi-automatic pistol, and the M4 carbine and the M500 shotgun,” said Naquin.
The unit also assists the base active-duty and full-time civilian security forces members, standing post watches, working on patrols and even participating in drills or other security force exercises.
“Once we have all our qualifications, we can basically do all the things the active-duty guys do and can try and help to take the burden off of them whenever we can,” said Naquin.
While here, the Reserve Sailors were also able to volunteer some time assisting the Gulfport USO (United Service Organizations), Jan. 15. The Sailors helped move items into storage and load equipment into vehicles for transport to a USO location opening at Campy Shelby in Hattiesburg, Mississippi.
After five years active duty and six years as a Reserve Sailor, Naquin, from Madisonville, Louisiana, said he and the other Reservists feel privileged to be able to continue to serve the Navy in their Reserve capacity at NCBC.
“I love doing it. It’s a job where I get to directly assist the Navy community as a first responder,” he said. “Even if it’s just giving somebody a hand with something — they can call us and we can do our best to accommodate and serve them as we’re needed. I just love what I do.”