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By Chief Mass Communication Specialist Brian P. Caracci, Navy Reserve Region Readiness and Mobilization Command San Diego
In May 2021, Navy Reserve Center (NRC) Lemoore opened a new facility with state-of-the-art meeting rooms and equipment capable of hosting small and large groups. With the new facility came a renewed interest in tours, and an increase in requests to use the facility. It also provided the NRC with an opportunity to improve warfighter readiness while strengthening relationships among active duty, Training & Administration of the Reserve (TAR) and Selected Reserve (SELRES) Sailors.
“On base, there is really no facility that has classrooms and meeting spaces to hold large groups,” said Lt. Elizabeth Merino, NRC Lemoore’s executive officer. “We've helped almost every tenant command on base with reserving spaces for classroom instruction, retirement ceremonies and holiday parties.”
Merino said both Navy and Army commands have used the spaces.
When a water pipe ruptured on July 22 at Navy Medicine Readiness and Training Command (NMRTC) Lemoore, the facility was forced to close, impacting Reserve mobilization by delaying the completion of medical requirements. The medical staff at NMRTC reached out to NRC Lemoore to see if there were spaces to convert to a clinic.
NRC staff was ready and able support NMRTC, ensuring medical mobilization readiness and helping Reserve Sailors continue to meet the mission.
“The NRC has been supportive of us to come over and use its facility,” said Cmdr. Anna Choe, a pediatrician at Medical Homeport at NMRTC Lemoore. “It was like setting up a remote site compared to where we normally work. It has been great to have the space, the IT support, and even the landline phones. Even the offices were converted to exam rooms.”
One of the biggest challenges to using the NRC spaces is that all naval hospitals run on their own network. When NRC Lemoore staff first found out that it would become a hospital clinic, NMRTC IT specialists came over and worked with the NRC’s IT specialists. They were able to plug in and move NMRTC’s network. Now NMRTC is operating on its own network at the NRC using NMRTC medical laptops.
“Right now, NRC Lemoore is meeting the needs of our Reserve Sailors while also utilizing part of our spaces as a pediatric hospital where expectant mothers and new born infants can be treated by their doctors,” Merino said.
NAS Lemoore is home to Commander Strike Fighter Wing Pacific and Commander Joint Strike Fighter Wing. More than half of the Navy’s F/A-18E/F Super Hornet aircraft reside here. It is the only Navy installation to house the F-35C Lightning II. NAS Lemoore hosts 16 operational Strike Fighter squadrons, two Fleet Replacement squadrons and one Search and Rescue squadron and four west coast Carrier Air Wing Commands and staff.