FROM July 31 to August 5, a group of midshipmen from the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland, got a taste of CNMI’s history and culture as part of the language, expertise regional and culture of the academy. It was – for many of these young future officers – the first time they had left the continental United States. With a tight schedule and many moving parts, it took a team/community/village effort to make it a success. On their behalf, I would like to express my thanks and appreciation by publicly acknowledging the following individuals and organizations here in Saipan as well as Tinian (as well as Guam and the Americas) whose participation, generosity and professionalism have makes this experience an experience worth remembering and a story worth telling:
• Naval Academy International Program Office (MD), David Anderson of Outdoor Focus, LLC, Las Vegas.
• Beth Demapan, Ray Deleon Guerrero Jr., Eva Chamorita and Willy Kaitabu.
• Shaun Christian and Directors/Staff of Star Marianas, Hertz, Maria Aileen Arnold and Staff of Islander Car Rental & Century Hotel.
• Mayor of Tinian Edwin P. Aldan, Bernadita Palacios, Jose Kiyoshi, Jose Atalig (photographer) and Franklin Mundo.
• Brooke Nevitt, National Park Service Officer, and Nataline Kaneshi, Ranger (who arranged to give us access to the US Memorial Park Visitor Center…on a day normally closed to the public!)
• Yumi “Naka” Brundidge, Sydney Takahashi and the crew of FishGuyzScuba, Pat Calvo and the staff of Kim’s Food Court & Snack Bar.
• Parker Yobei (Executive Director), Tony Piailug (Master Canoe Sculptor and Master Navigator), John Castro, Orlando Limes and all the trades helpers from the Seafaring Traditions Program of the Commonwealth Council of Arts and Culture.
• Chen from CK Electronics (across from KFC).
• JM Guerrero, who (with the help of Pat Calvo) presented each team member with a copy of a 1994 Saipan Pictorial color collectible!
• Fabian Indalecio for graciously sharing his passion and time with us.
• Jayvee Vallejera and Aldwin Batusin (Saipan Tribune) and Zaldy Dandan (Marianas Variety).
PS You can read the full story with over 100 photos on the blog at: https://www.discoversaipan.com/blog
WALT FJ GOODRIDGE