Family Featured

An Officer and a Daughter

May 27, 2015

The past month has been an amazing whirlwind of family events. The one that stands out the most was my daughter Julia’s commissioning as an officer in the Navy.  I have a few photos posted on my Facebook but wanted to share this with my blogger friends as well.

{First Class NROTC Midshipmen lining up for their commissioning ceremony}

It was a very emotional day for us as family.  We are not a “military family,” and Julia is the first Van Beek to be commissioned into the military. This is all new to us and we loved every minute of it. We are so proud of the choices she has made and her commitment to serving in the Navy, and even prouder that now we can now call ourselves a military family.

She was sworn in by our close family friend, Capt. Edmond L. Boullianne, USN, Ret. Ed has been a mentor to Julia over the years and he played a huge role in her decision to join the Navy.

 

{Watching Ed administer the Oath to Julia was the highlight of our day}

It is a tradition that a commissioned officer has to “pay” for his/her first salute from an enlisted member of the military, either retired or active duty.  Julia chose one of her best friends Megan for this, and in turn Megan received a shiny new coin.  Thank you Megan!

{Receiving her first salute from Megan}

 

Next comes the pinning of her rank.  She chose her dad, brother and I do to do this.

 

We then attended the joint commissioning ceremony for all the officers: Navy, Marine, Army and Air Force.  That ceremony was amazing as well.

 

One thing that touched me was how many of her college friends attended her commissioning ceremony.  I love each and every one of these young people,
and they made Julia’s day by getting up at the crack of dawn to watch this important event in her life.

 

{Thank you Zack, Liz, Addison, Chloe, Dylan, Rachel, Juliana, Blake and LeighAnna}

After the joint commissioning we spent a glorious day celebrating at a local winery with our amazing friends, the Boulliannes.

{Thank you Ed, Deb and Jean-Marc for spending this glorious day with us}

 

{Julia and her brother, Alex}

 

{Love this girl}

 

 

This is a photo of the four girls who were Julia’s best friends during her years in NROTC at the University of Virginia. Brigitte and Maggie are heading to Pensacola as a NFO and Pilot respectively, and Megan (second from left) will be commissioned next year. I love these girls as if they were my own.

While many of their peers may count down the days until college graduation, most NROTC midshipmen agree that commissioning is the pinnacle of their hard work throughout their college career.  It is a time for family and friends to participate in the recognition of their loved ones achievements as they begin this new chapter in their lives.

Julia graduated from the University of Virginia the next day, and the following weekend turned 22, which we celebrated with a house full of her friends. Within the next week or two she will be making a cross-country move to San Diego to fulfill her duty to the Navy as a SWO (Surface Warfare Officer).

So my friends, my blog has been lacking as of late because we’ve been busy.  Family always comes first around here, and as you can see it’s been an amazing month.  In addition to Julia’s events, my son also came home from Korea where he had been teaching for the past few months. Life is good.

I am so proud to call this young lady my daughter and best friend.I salute you Ensign Julia Van Beek!

 

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2 Comments

  • Reply Junkchiccottage May 28, 2015 at 4:12 pm

    Gay,
    I know you are so proud. It comes through in your writing. Your daughter is not only gorgeous but smart and has a great career ahead of her. Good luck to her. Love the picture of the two of you. So pretty. Frame that one!!!!
    I am on vacation this week but had to comment on this beautiful day in your lives.
    Kris

  • Reply Mary@mydogsmygardenandmary May 31, 2015 at 7:53 am

    Congratulations to your beautiful daughter. I know you are so proud of her. She will love San Diego. It is a great place to be and the weather is wonderful.
    Wonderful pictures and thank you so much for sharing this special day with us.
    Mary

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